103 Unlatched Breastfeeding with Jennifer Grayson

Jennifer Grayson on #CraveCast

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Today on the Crave Cast I am interviewing Jennifer Grayson. She is an author of a new book called: Unlatched: The Evolution of Breastfeeding and the Making of Controversy. Breastfeeding is certainly a controversy here in the United States. We have an incredibly large international diverse population but her book and the topic it covers is so interesting. Her book really dives into the history of breastfeeding and the trouble that women in America of having with it and the different topics around it.

Jennifer is an environmental journalist, Huffington Post columnist and her work has appeared in several publications. After having her own children, her lifetime commitment to restore the vanishing connection to the natural world led her to her research for Unlatched. Be sure to stay tuned until the end and share this podcast with anyone you know who is pregnant, wants to become pregnant or is having problems with breastfeeding.

Jennifer Grayson on #CraveCast

Sexualization happens when breastfeeding is not commonly viewed-Jennifer Click To Tweet

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn

 

Show Notes:

  • How much controversy is there around breastfeeding?
  • Why are we afraid of boobs?
  • Modern society vs not
  • What are the rates of breastfeeding in America now?
  • What has she learned through the process of writing this book?
  • What can be done to support pro-breastfeeding?
  • Are all hospitals baby friendly?
Death by artificial feeding was a great public health problem in early 20th century US. Click To Tweet

Resources:

www.jennifergrayson.com
Unlatched: The Evolution of Breastfeeding and the Making of Controversy

Jennifer’s Facebook

102 Bread, Wine, and Chocolate with Simran Sethi

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast- Simran-Sethi-Ep102

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Welcome back Crave Bears! In today’s interview, I will interview food educator, eco-hero, and journalist, Simran Sethi on her book Bread, Wine, Chocolate: The Slow Loss of Foods we Love. She reveals what we are losing and how we are losing it and how to rescue the foods that we crave. It’s an amazing book and a great introduction to all of the forces that come together to bring us this incredible cornucopia earth has to offer. Stay tuned until the end to dive into this book with me and Simran!

Also, this month’s swag bag is a $1700 swag bag! Our guest today is adding something juicy this month to the swag bag. Go over to iTunes and leave a review about the show!

 

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast- Simran-Sethi-Ep102

 

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
I'm not looking for the highest yield. I'm looking for the best taste. #SimranSethi Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • How was Simran inspired to write her book?
  • Why is it a problem that our food is 30 percent the same stuff?
  • Why are we headed towards the sixth mass extinction?
  • How is the suicide rate within the farmer population?
  • Why is it important to let people know about the food crisis?
90% of our milk on the shelves comes from one breed of cow! Click To Tweet

Resources:

Seeds of Change

www.localharvest.org

Bread, Wine, Chocolate

 

70 percent of our seeds are controlled by four companies! #SimranSethi Click To Tweet

101 Feel Worthy with Nancy Levin

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Nancy-Levin-Ep101

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Welcome back my Clan of the Crave Bears! Welcome to episode 101! A couple of announcements, last week we had a great interview with Dan Harris author of 10 Percent Happier where we talked about meditation for skeptics. We announced a 14-day meditation challenge! You can join us every day. It’s 5 minutes or less a day and we are right in the middle of it but you can join now! Go to the app store and download Dan Harris’s 10 Percent Happier meditation app. It’s free and for the first 7 days, you get quick little video lessons about the basics of meditation. Join us on facebook at bit.ly/wfdgroup with daily hits from me and tips, our meditation journey. We made it a 14-day challenge because the science shows that if you meditate every day for 14 days you start seeing a benefit from meditating.

Next big announcement, we are having our first live meetup! Come join me and other Crave Bears at our Crave Bear Picnic! I’ll be in my hometown, Portland, Oregon on August 14th from 5 to 7 pm. Come join me at the Arbor Lodge park in the picnic area!

Also, this month’s swag bag is a $1700 swag bag! Our guest today is adding something juicy this month to the swag bag. Go over to iTunes and leave a review about the show and we will tell you more about what that means in today’s episode! So make sure to listen all the way to the end of the episode.

Today we are talking about self-worth. This is one the biggest causes for food cravings and emotional eating. Just not feeling worthy. Today our guest, Nancy Levin will be talking about money, finances and the stress that women experience around these topics which then leads them to use food to calm us down. We will be specifically talking about how food and craving relate to our “money story”. We will be talking about Nancy’s new book: Worthy: Boost Your Self-Worth to Grow Your Net Worth. She is also the bestselling author of Jump…And Your Life will appear and Writing for my Life…Reclaiming the Lost Pieces of Me. She is a master integrative coach and the creator of the Jump coaching and Worthy coaching programs. She works with clients privately and in groups to design lives in alignment with their truths and desires. You can visit her online at www.nancylevin.com .

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Nancy-Levin-Ep101

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
I love and value myself just for who I am! Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • What made Nancy want to write “Worthy”?
  • What did she do at Hay House?
  • Why is it so hard to delegate?
  • What is the difference between self-worth and net worth?
  • When do we start to set our beliefs?
  • Self-esteem vs. self-worth
  • Let’s talk commitments!
  • How can boundaries affect net worth?
  • What is “the cycle”?
  • Why is action so important?
Our present moment decision will determine our future. Click To Tweet

Resources:

www.nancylevin.com

Hay House/Balboa Press http://www.hayhouse.com

www.instagram.com/deliciousalex

 

100 Meditation for the Skeptics with Dan Harris

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Dan-Harris-Ep100-3

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

We’re here! It’s episode 100! Welcome, my Clan of the Crave Bears! I’m so excited to be announcing episode 100! Who would have thought a year and a half ago when I launched this little show that we would now have this vibrant, growing, engaged community of you, my Crave Bears. We are growing in numbers every week. Thank you so much for your support! And thank you to all the authors, experts and dear friends of mine who have come onto the show to share their wisdom and give you inspiration.

Our topic today is something that I have struggled with over the years but I have seen the positive effect it has had on my own life. When done correctly this technique can work on the body and mind. So today, my dears, we are going to talk about meditation with none other than Dan Harris! He is an award-winning journalist from Good Morning America. We are going to talk about the benefits of meditation and Dan’s story.

But at the end of the show, I want you to stick around because we have a special announcement on how you can get in on our two-week meditation challenge with me and Dan. I was very lucky to meet Dan a couple of times last year when his book 10 Percent Happier came out. This book is a skeptic’s guide to meditation. At 7 am in 2004 Dan Harris freaked out in front of 5 million people. He had an all-out panic attack on Good Morning America. Half way through what he was supposed to read on a live show, he just bailed. To redeem himself he had to go on a healing journey. The psychologist he saw found the probable cause of his well-hidden drug use, depression after recovering for several years reporting on the war in Afghanistan, Israel, Palestine, Iraq. He was self-medicating and dabbling in some serious drugs and it led to this on-air panic attack.

I want to tell you about our special August swag bag! For our 100th episode to celebrate, it’s actually not going to be a $1000 swag bag, but a $1700 swag bag! To win this swag bag all you have to do is go to iTunes and leave a meaningful review on The Crave Cast and subscribe to the show. Send me a screenshot of the review via email, Twitter, Facebook or in a comment here to be entered to win.

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Dan-Harris-Ep100-3

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
I have a problem with are the people who tell you, you can get whatever you want with the power… Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • How did Dan get into meditation?
  • How does he feel about spirituality?
  • What is “the voice in our head”?
  • What kind of people should you be weary of when learning about meditation?
  • What is the science behind meditation?
  • Why keep meditating?
  • How many kinds of meditation are there?
  • How was his first retreat?
  • How does meditating make you less of an asshole?
  • What is emotional intelligence?
Once you see how chaotic your mind is the less likely to be yanked around by it. Click To Tweet

Resources:

10 Percent Happier

10 Percent Happier App

www.headspace.com  

www.instagram.com/deliciousalex

99 Life + Spirituality for Healing

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Monica Kenton-Jamie-Martin-Ep99

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Welcome back my Clan of the Crave Bears! We have two great and interesting interviews for you today ,but first I want to make sure you know that we are having a picnic. That’s right! We are having our very first Crave Bear Picnic: August 14th in my hometown Portland, Oregon. So let’s have a picnic! On August 14th at Arbor Lodge Park in the Arbor Lodge neighborhood in Portland, Oregon. Come out 5 to 7pm pacific time. I would love to see you and meet you. Bring something to share, bring yourself, your family. I’m going to bring my family and it’s going to be super fun.

This week we are starting something new on the Crave Cast. A lot of you, including me, have a spiritual bent. Many of us are curious about spirit, we pray, we meditate, we connect to the earth, we have our own version of connection with something bigger.

So I decided to have my dear friend Monica Kenton on the show. I call Monica when I need a little spiritual re-tuning. I asked Monica if she would be part of an experiment and be our spiritual guide. Help us bring more spiritual energy into our lives whether its God, the Universe, Spirit or whatever you call it. Monica agreed to come on the show once a month to tell us her perspective and help guide us a little bit. She is a wonderful spiritual mentor and trained in several different modalities from ancient wisdom, modern day spiritual practices, trained as a shaman and she is very socially conscience. She really wants to help people make a life they love while making a difference to the planet. Monica is going to tell us what’s happening right now and what are the energies of August and what actions can we take from this spiritual guidance to really awesome results. Be sure to listen all the way through!

After Monica, I am going to be interviewing Jamie Martin, the head editor at Experience Life Magazine. I was so honored to be on the cover of Experience Life Magazine a couple of months ago. I’m having her on the show to talk about as an experienced publisher what inspires her and what is she looking for next in terms of trends in this healthy living world.

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Monica Kenton-Jamie-Martin-Ep99

 

 

 

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
The true power of manifestation, it’s the power of the web of life! Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • How did Monica become a spiritual mentor?
  • What exactly does she do?
  • What is the energy like coming up?
  • How can we get over the “I’m not good enough”?
  • What advice does she have for people going into august?
  • How did Jamie get into Experience Life Magazine?
  • Why this magazine?
  • What kind of feedback does she get from readers?
  • What inspires her?
  • The 80/20 rule
A healthy libido is essential to overall good health! Click To Tweet

Resources:

www.monicakenton.com

www.facebook.com/monicakentonfans

www.experiencelife.com

97 The Girlfriend Manifesto with Ayesha Meriweather

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Ayeshia-Merriweather-Ep97-2

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

In the last week or two, it feels like the world is on fire. Videos of people being shot and killed, snipers killing policeman and women in the line of duty. Rage and hope filling the streets, tears, anger, and sadness. It feels like a lot! I was in Arizona to see a doctor and because I was in a car I was listening to the news a lot. I was feeling sad and angry and feeling really lost. It was Sunday night after I got back to the city that I was able to talk to people I was close to, people that I love. I think that was the only thing I knew how to do. I am so pleased and heartened and hopeful to have Ayesha Meriweather on the show this week and to talk about how we are really feeling and honoring the anger and really listening to each other.

Sometimes I think that’s all that we can really do to heal is really listen. That’s listening to our bodies, listening to ourselves, honoring what we see, not judging it or making it bad. Just listen! We just need to listen to each other. Sometimes that’s hard to do because we want to have the answers. Ayesha and I talk about that in this interview. We want to have it figured out and have the answers but we don’t always have that. We are not always perfect in how we say things but your intention matters!

I hope you enjoy this interview with Ayesha Meriweather. She is one the co-founders and creators of The Girlfriend Manifesto. She has been creating safe, empowering spaces for women online and in person at retreats with Girlfriend Weekends. Ayesha is very passionate about helping women heal in their own lives and with each other. Enjoy!

Don’t forget about our Swag Bag Giveaway! Here is how you can enter in to win this $1000 swag bag:

  1. Go to iTunes put up a meaningful review about your thoughts about The Crave Cast, what you’ve learned, what you’ve loved, why people should tune in. or you can go to bit.ly/cravecast and leave a review.
  2. Once a month I will be picking one meaningful review, I’ll get in touch with you, will announce it here on the podcast and I will be sending you all of these incredible goodies. So be sure to enter the $1000 swag bag giveaway at bit.ly/cravecast!

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Ayeshia-Merriweather-Ep97-2

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
For me, transparency is a huge way to feel more empowered. Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • What is The Girlfriend Manifesto?
  • What are women desiring?
  • How does she support women?
  • What is imposter syndrome?
  • What is an apothecary?
  • “The highlight reel” compared to “behind the scenes”
  • What social issues she is passionate about
For women it’s so much easier to feel like an imposter and to feel like we should know how to do something before… Click To Tweet

Resources:

www.thegirlfriendmanifesto.com

www.instagram.com/thegirlfriendmanifesto

It holds you more accountable to be a part of the solution rather than shielding yourself from the pain and… Click To Tweet

96 Orange Is The New Black Star, Alysia Reiner on Women in Hollywood

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Alysia Reiner-Ep96

Welcome back to the Crave Cast! We are talking about women in Hollywood and the roles of women on the big screen. The way that women are represented in Hollywood in our hyper-social media culture shapes how women are represented in society. Quite frankly, right now women are not represented well in these areas. There is gender pay inequality which came out as a result of a hack of Sony. It was leaked that Jennifer Lawrence made much less than her male co-stars in the same film. She made public statements about this and has learned to be a tougher negotiator on her own behalf.

Reports show that in 2014, 85% of films had no female directors, 80% of films had no female writers, 78% had no female editors and 92% had no female cinematographer. How can this be? What this means that virtually all of our movie consumption is from the male perspective, from the male point of view, and women are not adequately represented in viewpoint, or in content in the majority the films we watch today.

We want to create a world that is more equal, and we need more women’s voices telling those stories. Women make up only 13% of screenwriters in UK films and only 8% of directors in the UK. So the situation isn’t unique to American culture. It took Pixar 15 years to create a female lead in one of their films. There is only 1 female role for every 3 roles in family films. So yo can see how prevalent the issue is and we need women to be represented in a more balanced way in our popular culture. Women only make up 5% of characters in political power. What does this tell little girls about their future?

Geena Davis is a powerful Hollywood activist on a quest to improve the representation of women on our screens. Today’s interview is with Alysia Reiner. She’s an actress and has the role of Fig in OITNB. She’s also filming Better Things right now, and she plays DA Parks in How to Get Away with Murder. She’s everywhere right now! She’s a producer for Equity, a film that is the first female Wall Street film starring Alysia Reiner. She loves the role of a change maker and she’s committed to helping women have equal representation in film, politics, business and the home. You are going to love this interview with Alysia Reiner.

Don’t forget about our Swag Bag Giveaway! Here is how you can enter in to win this $1000 swag bag:

  1. Go to iTunes put up a meaningful review about your thoughts about The Crave Cast, what you’ve learned, what you’ve loved, why people should tune in. or you can go to bit.ly/cravecast and leave a review.
  2. Once a month I will be picking one meaningful review, I’ll get in touch with you, will announce it here on the podcast and I will be sending you all of these incredible goodies. So be sure to enter the $1000 swag bag giveaway at bit.ly/cravecast!

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-Alysia Reiner-Ep96

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
Every woman who watches media, sees herself as a minority. Every man sees himself as the… Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • Alysia shares her path to acting and where she is now
  • How she became aware of women’s roles in films and how she knew she had to change it
  • How every woman who watches media sees herself as a minority & that effect on us
Seeing the world through my eyes as the Mother of a daughter has changed my view of the world. Click To Tweet
  • The impact on our health and well-being when we don’t see women represented in media
  • Why she wants her child to feel free to be absolutely comfortable with herself
  • How Meryl Streep was a role model for her as she grew up
  • What it’s like to be on a hit show that is female-dominated
How you language to your children on a daily basis determines how they view themselves. Click To Tweet
  • The new film that is due out any day now and where you can see it
  • Why you shouldn’t be surprised if you get a gift of The 4 Agreements from Alysia
It’s outrageously empowering to be a part of a hit show that is female dominated! Click To Tweet

Resources:

Watch the trailer for Equity:

Check out Equity the Film on Facebook

 

Food and sex are 2 of the best things about being human; we have to remove the shame around them! Click To Tweet

95 Women’s Money with Farnoosh Torabi

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-FarnooshTorabi-Ep95

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Welcome to the Crave Cast! It’s summer 2016! We have a couple of important announcements. We are going to have our first west coast crave bear meet up! I will be in Portland, Oregon on August 14th and I will be doing a live in-person meet up. Where and what time I am not sure but I will keep you posted. Go over to my hangout Facebook page and join my Facebook group at bit.ly/wfdgroup and I will be listing exact times there or just listen to upcoming episodes.

Let’s talk about money! Money is stressful and it’s one of the most common stresses that Americans experience. I have my good friend Farnoosh Torabi on the show today. Farnoosh is one of America’s leading personal finance experts. She has her own great podcast called “So Money”. I actually appeared on it a while back and it was really fun. We met and had tea and had such a good time. Farnoosh is hooked on helping Americans live their richest, happiest lives! She has written for “O” the Oprah magazine and she is the host of a show that we will talk about more where she goes and interviews famous people and entrepreneurs and follows them around. It’s really cool! Her latest book is really interesting. It’s called “When She Makes More: The Truth about Navigating Love and Life for a New Generation of Women.” We are going to talk about money and our relationship with money in our relationships and how traditional gender roles can sometimes make money more complicated. Enjoy this episode and be sure to listen all the way to the end so you can learn how to enter in for next month’s swag bag!

Don’t forget about our Swag Bag Giveaway! Here is how you can enter in to win this $1000 swag bag:

  1. Go to iTunes put up a meaningful review about your thoughts about The Crave Cast, what you’ve learned, what you’ve loved, why people should tune in. or you can go to bit.ly/cravecast and leave a review.
  2. Once a month I will be picking one meaningful review, I’ll get in touch with you, will announce it here on the podcast and I will be sending you all of these incredible goodies. So be sure to enter the $1000 swag bag giveaway at bit.ly/cravecast!

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-FarnooshTorabi-Ep95

 

 

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
One in five women is the bread winner in their marriage. @Farnoosh Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • How did the traditional gender roles affect her own marriage?
  • What is her book “When she Makes More” about?
  • How does stress about finances affect people’s health?
  • Who are the people that usually worry more about finances?
In all families 40% of women are the bread winners and that includes single moms.@farnoosh Click To Tweet
  • What kind of questions and responses does she get from her podcast?
  • What is “Follow the Leader”?
  • How did she prepare her life to be able to host a show?
  • Don’t assume that your partner will just know what you need!
Maybe not everybody can be an entrepreneur but entrepreneurs come from anywhere. @Farnoosh Click To Tweet

Resources:

Twitter – @farnoosh

www.somoneypodcast.com

www.followtheleader.cnbc.com

“When She Makes More” ~ Farnoosh Torabi

94 Miki Agrawal: Menstruation Shame Slayer & World Changer

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-MikiAgrawal-Ep94

The Cravings Whisperer Podcast with Alexandra Jamieson

Welcome back my Clan of the Crave Bears! This is the place where we have a non-judgmental space to find out what our cravings really mean. So last week, I mentioned that I was taking a Summer hiatus. Well, a dear friend of mine talked me out of my hiatus! We have too much momentum going to take the Summer off! So I’m looking forward to spending my Summer right here with you!

Now today I am the Shame Slayer and we are talking about menstruation, and I encourage you to continue to play this episode even if your children or husband are in the room. It’s a very natural part of life and it played a part in all of us being here. So, let’s get rid of the shame surrounding menstruation and just talk about it openly and honestly.

Today’s guest is Miki Agarwal. Miki Agrawal is a force of nature. She was named 2015 Social Entrepreneur of the Year at the World Technology Awards and her Company THINX was named Time Magazine’s “25 Best New Inventions of 2015″. Miki was also the recipient of the TriBeCa Film Festival’s “Disruptive Innovation Award” and was named one of the “Top 20 Millenials on a Mission” by Forbes.

She is the CEO and Co-Founder of THINX, a high-tech, beautiful underwear solution for women to wear during their periods. She teamed up with AFRIpads in Uganda to fund a pack of reusable cloth pads for every underwear sold to get millions of girls back in school. To date, Miki and THINX have helped over 30,000 girls go back to school.

This girl has it going on! Thinx are “period proof panties”. You won’t believe how many girls miss school each year due to menstruation. This is an important product and can truly make a difference in the lives of girls. It’s time to end our body shaming around our periods.

Don’t forget about our Swag Bag Giveaway! Here is how you can enter in to win this $1000 swag bag:

  1. Go to iTunes put up a meaningful review about your thoughts about The Crave Cast, what you’ve learned, what you’ve loved, why people should tune in. or you can go to bit.ly/cravecast and leave a review.
  2. Once a month I will be picking one meaningful review, I’ll get in touch with you, will announce it here on the podcast and I will be sending you all of these incredible goodies. So be sure to enter the $1000 swag bag giveaway at bit.ly/cravecast!

Alexandra-Jamieson-Featured-Art-The-Crave-Cast-MikiAgrawal-Ep94

You can Subscribe to the podcast on iTunesSoundCloudStitcher or TuneIn
100 million girls miss a week of school when they have their periods. Click To Tweet

Show Notes:

  • What Thinx are and how they work
  • The technology behind Thinx
  • How Thinx are sexy and beautiful, feel like normal underwear, but still functional
  • The give-back component of Thinx and how women in 3rd world countries benefit
A productive woman in a developing community gives 90% of her income to her community and family. Click To Tweet
  • How women in 3rd world countries are dealing with periods without proper supplies
  • Where to find the 13 minute introduction video about Thinx
  • Why men have no idea what a period is and how it works
  • Why Nepalese men blamed menstruating women for a devastating earthquake
The shame and taboo surrounding menstruation is completely misplaced. Click To Tweet
  • How Miki came to be able to freely discuss menstruation, when she was raised with shame around it
  • Why schools should teach both boys and girls about menstruation together
  • The need for the curriculum for educating on menstruation that Miki is creating
50% of hospital beds in Africa can be eliminated by proper hygiene. Click To Tweet
  • Why the hygiene market is ripe for disruption and the medical problem it can solve
  • Why HelloTushy can solve many of the hygiene issues we experience today

Resources:

www.shethinx.com

www.hellotushy.com

 

93 Healing Depression + Anxiety with Dr. Kelly Brogan

 

I grew up pretty happy-go-lucky.

 

I love my family, and felt strong and healthy, surrounded by those smart, funny, caring people. We played outside a lot, had enough of the basics, and every few year our cats had kittens…this was the 80’s so fixing your pets wasn’t so popular in rural Oregon.

On the back porch with my big brother Brendan

On the back porch with my big brother Brendan

 

Every vacation and holiday was spent bundled in the car driving to celebrate with aunts, uncles, and grandparents. Games, laughter, and witty verbal acrobatics were served alongside massive meals.

 

Yet my family, like most, had a dark side.

Depression, anxiety, addiction, and self-medication litter the family tree like plastic bags stuck in its branches.

 

My mother’s sister and father both committed suicide, using prescription medications, within a few years of each other when I was very young. It devastated the family, especially my mom.

 

Other family members have struggled with drug addiction, depression, and anxiety over the years, but I thought I’d dodged the bullet.

 

Along with my dad’s blonde hair, I thought I’d inherited his family’s calm, steady strength. Then I hit my first health crisis at the age of 25.

 

Along with near-constant migraine headaches, digestive troubles, painful periods, and a 20 pound weight gain, I felt depressed, foggy, and disconnected from the vitality of my youth.

 

Coke, vanilla lattes, Peanut M&Ms, and Ben & Jerry’s Super Fudge Chunk were my cravings of choice, the sugar and caffeine pulling me through long days at an office job I hated.

 

If you’ve ever suffered through chronic depression, or even a short window of the blues, you know the pain, frustration, hopelessness, and fear that walks with it, hand in hand. Dreams seem impossible, or are just forgotten. Love and joy feel too far away, like distant, grey memories.

 

And because the body feels so bad, it often craves quick-fix bandaids like sugar, sex, coffee, smoking, gambling, or shopping.

 

Food, especially sugar and caffeine, became my main source of energy and pleasure. But what I didn’t see then was that those cravings were a red flag that something was wrong.

 

The first doctor I visited for the near-daily migraines handed me two prescriptions after a few minutes in his office: Prozac and painkillers.

 

The fear and pain of my family’s history with addiction and suicide came rushing back as I left his office, popping another handful of Advil. I knew I didn’t want to start taking those drugs, even if they meant temporary relief.

 

I had seen, first hand, the possible future that comes with becoming dependant on these drugs.

 

I knew there had to be another way.

And I found it…

IMG_1594

 

What I discovered was a growing world of authentic healing, alternative doctors, and functional nutrition that not only healed my depression, brain fog, headaches, and weight gain, it became my passion.

Acting out in a hateful way leads to more hate and more violence. Click To Tweet

 

I studied at the world-famous Natural Gourmet Institute, to learn how to cook healing foods. I dove into deeper emotional education at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. And I’ve gone further into the brain science with a 6-month Certification in Applied Positive Psychology (Emiliya Zhivotovskaya, the founder of the CAPP program was a past Crave Cast guest – listen to our interview here:)…

 

In order to get out from under the cloud of exhaustion, brain fog, depression, and physical pain of the migraines, I had to learn what my body and brain really needed, what my cravings were really asking for, and heal my sugar and caffeine addictions.

 

I’m NOT anti-sugar, nor do I believe any food is evil… (except high-fructose corn syrup – we should all avoid that 100%)

 

Now I have a very different relationship with sugar and caffeine. I sometimes enjoy them, but mostly avoid them. I feel when it’s ok to have those foods when I’m craving them – especially if I want to enjoy a celebration with my family or friends or have a seasonal treat.

 

And, most importantly, I feel when my body is really craving some deeper kind of healing. I feel like I want sugar, when what “she” really needs is a friend to connect with. You may crave caffeine when what your body really needs is a new sleep hygiene strategy and more soothing, joyful movement. I know when my bacterial balance is off, because I’m also having bloating, a zit or two, and brain fog.

 

The beauty is, science confirms everything it took me years to put together on my own: what you eat can cause or heal your depression. I detailed a lot of the journey in my latest book, Women, Food, And Desire, but there’s more science just coming out.

 

Today on the podcast, I interview Kelly Brogan, MD, author of A Mind of Your Own: The Truth About Depression and How Women Can Heal Their Bodies to Reclaim Their Lives. Kelly studied cognitive neuroscience at MIT before receiving her MD from Weill Cornell Medical College. Board certified in psychiatry, psychosomatic medicine, and integrative holistic medicine, she is one of the only doctors in the nation with these qualifications.

82 percent of what we are calling medication effect is entirely placebo. Click To TweetThis book and her recommendations (which line up perfectly with my Cravings Cleanse + Mindset Makeover program) have truly changed people’s lives: her readers are healing their depression, anxiety, and the vague family of mood symptoms that so many of us suffer from.

 

Calling depression a disease is really no different than calling a fever a disease. Click To Tweet

Links and Resources Mentioned:

A Mind of your Own – Kelly Brogan

Anatomy of an Epidemic – Robert Whitaker

www.Ewg.org

www.ewg.org/skindeep

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