Habit Change

The Link Between Food and Depression {What to Eat to Naturally Feel Happier}


Oftentimes we view the mind and body as separate entities. We treat the mind with cognitive therapy and see a psychiatrist and we treat the body through the various systems and health care specialists for each system’s issue, such as a cardiologist for the heart, or neurologist for the brain. Unfortunately this view of the body and mind is antiquated and simply not true. Everything in our body is connected and the foods we eat and digest can and do directly affect our brain, our mood, and mental illness.

Medicine has now discovered the link between insulin resistance or even prediabetes and a greater risk of losing brain function prematurely, having cognitive decline, poor memory. and alzheimers.

But how does sugar and processed foods affect our daily mood?

I personally feel spikes in anxiety a day or two after eating any amount of excess sugar. Before I dove into research on all things wellness, I never thought to ask myself after a period of heightened anxiety,


Now I do, and I generally can tie that moment of anxiety back to food that didn’t serve me. Through my research, I began to find studies that validated what I was experiencing. Even more so, there are other studies indicating that diabetes medications are being tested to treat anxiety and depression because the connection between heightened blood sugar and depression is so evident. The goal for most of us though is to prevent that initial rush of sugar and then insulin in our bloodstream in the first place. There are so many success stories of people eradicating or controlling otherwise debilitating anxiety or depression with the use of food.

Here are 3 Ways To Reap the Benefits of Limiting Sugar

  • Recognize the Addiction: In the previous study mentioned, sugar withdrawal was substantiated as a real thing. You can become addicted and it can be very difficult to stop. Being aware of it gives you power. When you begin to remove sugar, know that you’re craving it and be patient. With time those cravings will be reduced.

  • Fill Up On Real, Healthy Foods as Replacements: Great substitutes for sugar are berries, fruit, or dark chocolate that contains 70% or more of cocoa. All are excellent alternatives to processed sugar to stave off cravings and get over the initial obstacle of cravings.

  • Increase the Intensity of Your Workouts: Add higher intensity to your workouts and not only will you increase the feel good hormones in your body, you may reduce your cravings altogether. This study showed that exercise participants who exercised at a greater intensity had lower levels of the hormone that stimulates appetite.


For those of you inspired by the stories of people healing themselves naturally, but may be dealing with more complicated health issues, there are some amazing medical doctors who also believe and practice functional or integrative medicine to use your own body’s healing mechanisms to create big changes.

One of those incredible game-changing doctors is Dr. Jessica Floyd, a Mayo-Clinic trained, Board-Certified Neurologist, who just launched into the world of coaching clients with a more integrative approach through her new business Synapse & Soul.

Check her out on social media and stay tuned for her website to launch soon! Also, come back to the blog for a Q&A on Dr. Jessica’s new business.

Instagram @synapse_and_soul

Facebook Synapse & Soul

3 Life-Changing Tips on How-To Believe In Yourself (A How-To on Training Your Thoughts To Support Your Dreams)

Arguably, believing in yourself is the number one requirement to accomplishing anything in your life. If you never believe in yourself, you’ll never take action, and if you never take action, things stay the same, you stay the same.


Believing in yourself means changing the broken record of sabotaging thoughts going through your mind. To change your thoughts you must first be aware of them and the effect they have on your reality.

The past year has brought tons of changes in my life. More importantly, I finally took action on things/dreams/goals I’ve had for years. How did I do it? I got sick and tired of waiting. I finally understood that no one and nothing will come into your life and just tell you, you’re good enough. And even if they do, if you don’t believe it for yourself, it’ll never stick. So, to do things in life, make changes, reach for dreams, you have to, must, first believe in yourself and believe you’re worthy.

I’ve included 3 life-changing tips on how to, finally, believe in yourself.

Rather than being your thoughts and emotions, be the awareness behind them.
— Eckhart Tolle

Tip Number 1: Practice Thought Awareness

Consciousness of your thoughts is huge. It is so big that this one tip could change everything in your life. Eckhart Tolle is an incredible resource to dig deep into thought awareness. He explains how to garner this awareness and listen to your thoughts. He has taught me to become the objective observer of my thoughts. Once you start to become aware of your thoughts, you can start to question them. Somewhere in your upbringing, history, or experiences, you may have been told things about yourself that stuck with you. Maybe you failed at something or were picked on for one particular thing as a child and it stuck with you. When you have to overcome fear and begin to believe yourself as worthy of a goal or a positive change in your life, you have to address these thought patterns that can most often prevent us from growing.

A great way to increase this awareness and work on this is this simple meditation/journaling exercise.

  1. Find a pen and paper and have them near you. Find a comfortable seat, and close your eyes.

  2. Begin to tune into your breath. Focus on the air moving in your nose and slowly releasing out your nose. Bring your focus to your belly as it rises and falls with each breath.

  3. Let your breathing maintain its natural rhythm as you begin to bring your awareness to your thoughts.

  4. Be patient with yourself and imagine yourself as an objective observer inside your head.

  5. As thoughts spring up into your awareness, acknowledge their presence, and detach or disengage from any involvement, judgment or reaction to them.

  6. Begin to turn inward and pose the question, “who am I?”

  7. Listen for the response. Bring your awareness to the back and forth within your mind. Maybe your thoughts are positive, confident, and empowering and then somewhere in your mind those empowering thoughts are shut down or rejected.

  8. Just listen. Follow up with questions such as “What am I good at?”, “How can I serve?”

  9. Again, listen to the back-and-forth.

  10. Open your eyes and write down what came up. All that came up even if it was conflicting or contradictory.

If you are feeling emotions that rise up unexpectedly or that you can’t seem to process, this is a great exercise to continue doing. Meditate on questions you need answered and get to the root of your emotions as if they’re simply symptoms to an underlying thought pattern or reaction to a current situation. This is how to learn from yourself.

Tip Number Two: Suspend Belief and Talk-Back

This tip can feel quite silly to begin with but this is a process not a quick fix. Once you are aware of the thought patterns in your mind you must then begin the work on addressing them. The first part is to suspend the belief of the thought. So many of us believe what our minds tell us. We forget we are not the thoughts but the observer of the thoughts and we believe. That belief carries us through life as probably one of the most significant influencers on our decisions. Our decisions make our reality. So, to begin, you must challenge the thoughts that don’t serve you. Why do I say “suspend belief”? Why can’t we just not believe them? Well, I personally have found it’s just not that easy. Sometimes these thought patterns have been ingrained in our thinking for decades. Our mind creates a cozy little home for thoughts that have been around for decades and it takes a bit more work and time to undo that.

So, once the thought that does not serve you comes into your awareness, tell yourself that just for this moment or this day you will not believe it. Say to yourself, “that’s not true” or “that’s not real” or “(insert thought) is not really me.”

Secondly, talk back to yourself. Develop a manifesting (present tense) mantra. Maybe if your sabotaging thought is “I can’t exercise” your manifesting mantra to talk back is “I am strong and healthy.”

Continue this process of suspending the belief of the thought that doesn’t serve you and countering it with the manifesting mantra.

Tip Number Three: Embrace Authenticity - Be Courageous Enough to Show Up As Yourself

Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we’re supposed to be and embracing who we are.
— Brene Brown

The last tip is pretty tough. But that’s why the title says “life-changing”. To be authentic takes courage. I love this Brene Brown quote because she hits on a very important part of this. It’s a daily practice. It doesn’t just happen once and you never have to work at it again. Once you bring an awareness into your life about the stories in your head about who you are, you’ll get to know yourself better. You’ll also get to know the story you’ve told yourself. The most important part of this is simply understanding this one truth - you are not that story. So start living by that truth. You are not that story you’ve believed. Once you detach your identity from the “story” you’ve convinced yourself you were, begin to build your authentic self back piece by piece. It can be a bit unsettling to have to stop believing in an identity you’ve clung to for years. So be patient and know this is part of the process. As you grow into and find that authentic self, that place of true joy, know that it will cause you to feel expansive, excited and peaceful. You’ll find less resistance because it’s not someone else’s life you’re seeking to live, it’s your life that you’re born to live.