- Mood Changes
Our Approach to Improving Mood:
Mood problems occur for many different reasons. It is not necessarily all in your head. It is more likely that it is all in your body.
Cause #1 Hormonal Imbalances
Most mood problems are actually related to hormone imbalances. Low levels of cortisol, DHEA, estrogen,progesterone and/or testosterone will trigger a biochemically-induced mood problem (anxiety,depression, irritability, nervousness, changing moods, etc.).
Cortisol and DHEA are two of the main stress related hormones in our body. When cortisol and DHEA are depleted or low, we can feel depressed simply because of the physical and mental exhaustion that takes place. When cortisol levels are unstable we can have up and down moods throughout the day as well as feel irritable.
Some people feel “wired and tired” from adrenal exhaustion – they can get amped up and even feel anxious, and at the same time have moments through the day where they feel burned out and tired. This can also be due to cortisol levels bouncing up and down.
When progesterone levels are low you can feel anxiety, irritability, and nervousness, and even have difficulty sleeping and relaxing.
Lastly, when estrogen levels are low you can have mental fogginess, forgetfulness, depression, anxiety,changing moods, and difficulty falling asleep.
Cause #2 Digestive Imbalances
The GI tract is called the “second brain”. Most of the serotonin in your body is made in the GI tract, not in the brain. Amino acids are the building blocks of all our brain chemicals. A good supply of amino acidsstarts with a healthy digestive tract. If there are problems with digestion, especially of proteins, then the supply of amino acids is poor, and this gets reflected in the brain chemistry.
Hidden food allergies can also cause mood problems. Food allergies are known as the “great mimicker” because they can cause just about any symptom in the body, including depression, anxiety, and evenpanic attacks. I have one patient in particular that has an allergy to corn. Whenever he eats corn he feels intense anxiety. The solution for him – he no longer eats corn. Yes, it can be that simple.
Cause #3 Detoxification Imbalances
Certain types of depression can be traced to chemical and environmental toxicity as their root cause. Heavy metals, such as lead, mercury, aluminum, and cadmium, are also toxic to the brain and nervous system. Heavy metals interfere with normal metabolism by disrupting enzyme systems.
When the body is unable to eliminate harmful chemicals or heavy metals, those substances can (and usually will) build up to harmful levels. Many of these substances easily penetrate the brain and spinal cord, and cause depression and other mood problems. One of the most commonly reported benefits from a safe and effective detoxification program is alleviation of depression.
What to expect from us:
If we suspect your mood problem is caused by hormones then the next step would be to test your cortisoland DHEA with a simple saliva test. The best way to test sex hormones (estrogen, progesterone, andtestosterone) is also with saliva testing.
If we suspect your GI tract is causing your mood problem then the next step may be to test for a hidden GI infection and/or hidden food allergies. The best way to test the GI tract for infections is with a GI panel. This requires four stool samples. Don’t worry…we will walk you through the details of the collection process so you can easily do it at home.
The best way to test for food allergies/sensitivities is with an elimination/challenge diet. For those patients who would rather have a test that is quicker and easier, blood testing is the next option.
Individual treatment programs vary, but always include advice on lifestyle changes (diet, exercise, sleep,stress management, etc.), nutritional supplements (herbs, vitamins, minerals), and sometimesacupuncture.
Take the Next Step:
Call our office today and talk to Dr. Carri directly to see if you are a good candidate for our program.