Mental Health and Gut Health

Mental Health | Gut Health | Microbiome | Immunity

Scientific data is beginning to show an elaborate connection between gut health and brain function. Learn more about how you can positively influence both.

Is there a connection between mental health and gut health? And if so, is the connection in one direction, or in both directions? That is, can your brain’s health influence your gut function, and can your gut health have an influence on your  brain, and thus, mental health?

Last month, I arrived two minutes before a six-hour continuing education lecture on the subjects of immunity, inflammation, and the gut microbiota was slated to begin, and there were but a few seats left in the crowded hotel conference room. Apparently, I picked a hot topic! The majority of the participants were nurses and doctors, and based on the speed of the note-taking I witnessed, there was great interest in the topic. However, I wouldn’t expect the average person to care, even though I think everyone should.

For you, I will disseminate those six hours of lecture into the best takeaways for you regarding the connection between your gut and your mental health. For our purposes here, I’ll try to keep the medical terminology simple and on point about its connection to brain health and mental health.

Continue reading “Mental Health and Gut Health”

Fall 2016 Welcome Message

The leaves are turning, the morning air has a familiar crispness to it, and the kids are back in school.

Welcome to Fall! It’s become my tradition here on the Seattle Direct Counseling blog to welcome visitors to our site at the beginning of the Fall season, as well as to welcome back clients who have taken their summer vacations or have been on hiatus for awhile. Welcome back.

There is an exciting buzz of possibility and change at SDC. I (Imei) just completed an Ironman race in August, and physically I have never felt more challenged, stretched… and exhausted! Yet, I am thrilled to bring to my work a renewed compassion and focus on helping each one of you move towards the goals that mean the most in your lives.

Already halfway into September, I have a couple of reminders regarding Seattle Direct Counseling and your mental health

  1. With darkness coming on earlier, I shift evening hours by 30 minutes, so the last session of the day ends at 6:00pm.
  2. Also with the fading light, people who struggle with SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) should be considering proactive preparation, such as making sure UV light boxes are in working order, supplementation in the diet is made, exercise increased, and book your strategy session with me early (before October is ideal).
  3.  September is Suicide Prevention Month. Chances are that either you or someone you know struggles with thoughts about suicide. Now is a good time to book an appointment and talk about these thoughts rather than letting them become overwhelming, hopeless monologues. If you are helping someone else to begin therapy because of suicidal thoughts, we are ready to be of help.
  4. By the end of the month, I traditionally see people stop walking or running outside because of the change in weather. Consider your strategy for cross training and for indoor activities that give you a full-body workout, alternating cardio workouts with anaerobic short-intervals of high intensity. Many people find exercise a way to fight winter blues, anxiety, and work stress.
  5. Did you know: Mindfulness Meditation can be a part of your session. Ask us about starting your sessions in the office with mindfulness meditation, as well as meditation exercises you can do at home to help alleviate anxious thoughts and promote focused thought and clarity.

The most frequent request I am receiving now is whether I am taking new clients in September and October. The answer is: YES, as long as there is room on my schedule. If you are just coming by our website for the first time, welcome. Take your time to peruse our resources, and feel free to book your complimentary consultation.