Food and Mood: How Parenting and Your Plate Are Connected
guest post by: Michelle Brown
I once had an ugly moment when I was pregnant with my second child where I threw the cat- yes, threw her– out the door. Thankfully cats always land on their feet. I however, didn’t fare so well. Ashamed at my behavior and feeling totally out of control, I broke down in tears at what I’d just done.
While it wasn’t one of my finer moments, it did serve as a wake-up call to take a good look at my health, my emotions, and my future. Exhaustion and irritability were the defining factors in my life – and I couldn’t simply blame it on the pregnancy hormones. I remember constantly thinking, “What’s wrong with me?”
I spent most of my twenties and early thirties feeling like I could never “pull it together” in my life. Sure, to most people I looked and acted normally- I was a responsible adult and a (mostly) good mom who made sure my children were clothed, fed and happy, the bills were paid and the laundry was done. But inside I was crumbling. In a constant state of fatigue, I didn’t have the energy to do much more than survive. Worst of all, I dealt with mind-numbing depression and brain fog that kept me from finding the motivation to move forward.
To be perfectly honest, I really felt like there was something wrong with me. As in, who I was fundamentally as a person. Why did everyone else seem to have it so together, moving forward with their life while I felt like I couldn’t do more than just survive?
I remember telling the Lord on many occasions, “All I can give you is this: I’ll never give up.” I hung onto the hope that God had better things in store for me, even if they seemed inexplicably out my reach. God answered my prayer for healing in a way I never imagined one fateful afternoon while reading one of my favorite blogs. (It’s amazing what you can learn from a blog, huh?) 😉
I’d always had a passion for nutrition and cooking and “fun” for me was looking up new recipes on my favorite healthy eating sites. Imagine my surprise when, instead of a new recipe to share, one of my favorite clean eating bloggers shared her new diagnosis with thyroid disease- and how she’d learned that foods like gluten, dairy, and soy products were often at the root of thyroid issues.
Having been diagnosed with hypothyroidism years before, I was shocked at what I read as I researched the links she shared on her website about thyroid issues and the power of food to overcome them. Wheat was inflammatory? Soy products were bad for you? Why hadn’t anyone told me that the very foods I thought were healthy were actually destroying my health?
Over the next few months, I changed the way I was eating, removing not only gluten but all grains from my diet, as well as dairy products, soy, sugar and processed foods. I eventually consulted with a functional medicine practitioner who helped me tweak my diet further, as well testing for nutrient deficiencies and gut infections. (I had a nasty case of H. pylori, a bacterial infection that was contributing to the autoimmune symptoms I was experiencing.)
What happened next was truly a miracle. The joint pain, debilitating fatigue, mouth sores and skin issues I had dealt with for years began to melt away, and I’m not exaggerating when I say that I felt like a different person. Best of all, I felt focused, calm and in control of my thoughts, and not nearly as grumpy and easily irritated with my hubby and my kids- a change I know they appreciated!
I became a believer in the power of food to affect our health and mood- so much so that I went back to school to become a Certified Transformational Nutrition Coach and now spend my days helping others overcome the fatigue, brain fog, and digestive issues that plague our society these days.
I share my story with others in the hopes that other women who feel stuck in the same place I was- struggling with exhaustion, overwhelm, irritability and guilt- can find the answers they need to ditch the fatigue and finally move forward.
You know, I noticed the other day as I was reading the creation account in Genesis, that when God created man and woman and placed them on this earth, he didn’t put a grocery store full of convenience foods on the corner for them to draw nourishment from. He put them in a garden full of fresh, healing foods that provided the nutrients and enzymes they needed to thrive spirit, soul, and body.
What if we ditched the toxic foods that create imbalance and ill health in our bodies and instead choose nutrient-dense, nourishing foods like fruits, veggies, grass-fed beef and wild-caught fish, olive and coconut oil? What if simply making better choices in what we put on our plate could affect not only our waistline, but our mental health as well? What if we could be better moms, better wives, better friends, and even better lovers of God by taking the time to nourish our bodies the way they were meant to be nourished?
If you’re wondering if the foods you’re eating could be derailing your best efforts at living your life with joy, peace, and energy, I’d love to offer you my free Food Sensitivities Quiz to help you determine if the foods you’re eating could be at the root of your exhaustion and overwhelm.
And, momma? Where ever you are in life, whether you feel like exhaustion is overcoming your best efforts at being a great mom or you feel like you’ve finally gotten a few things figured out- don’t give up. The answers are there- and they may just surprise you!
By: Michelle Brown
After spending way too many years living in a constants state of fatigue, brain fog and depression Michelle finally decided she had enough!
Michelle found the power of real food and simple habits to transform her own life and now she has a passion for sharing with others what a few simple changes in their daily routine can do for their lives. A Certified Transformational Nutrition Coach and best-selling author, Michelle can be found at overcomingauto.com where she helps moms ditch the toxic foods, thoughts, and habits that are leaving them exhausted and irritable- not a pretty combination for any mom. Her latest book, “Toxin Takedown”, will be released November 2016.
Find Michelle at:
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/overcomingautoblog/
Facebook Group for Exhausted Moms: https://www.facebook.com/groups/508821205970138/