For Ailments of the Mind, Look to the Body
To treat mood and mind, look to the body. Nutritional status, hormone balance, food sensitivities, toxins and digestive function influence not only temperament and attention but also energy levels, sleep quality, and immunity. The idea that afflictions such as anxiety and autism, ADHD and Alzheimer's & Parkinson's, can be effectively treated, not by administering psychoactive medication, but by investigating and repairing the body's key basic systems, is resisted by most conventionally trained clinicians. The brain, though, is not magically disconnected from the rest of the body. And if pressed to explain something like Wernicke's encephalopathy or streptococcal associated pediatric autoimmune neuropsych disorders (Pandas), even the most Cartesian clinician would struggle to argue otherwise. How can the biology of the brain not be affected by the biology of the body? Stripped of our cultural programming, we understand this almost without thinking. It's the medical specialties, the drug advertisements, the insurance reimbursement rules that want us to chop our bodies up into discrete, disconnected bits. So, not only might your joint pains, skin rash, irritable bowel, and depression all be related, but it could also be that the only way to durable recovery and sustainable good health is by seeing and addressing the proverbial "big picture."
For me the easiest way to achieve this new and kind of exciting insight into the body's inner workings is the Organic Acids Test-- basically poring over metabolic "foot prints" of the body's inner workings. All you do is pee in a plastic cup and send it off to Kansas or North Carolina. In two weeks or so, you have the results!
Some folks might also want to know their hormone status-- not just Dhea and cortisol but also pregnenolone (the hormone of memory), progesterone (hormone of calm) and other sex hormones. Conventional doctors and NPs can order this via blood work, of course, but there is also always the option of saliva and urine.
If this current health crisis has taught us anything, I would venture to say it has awoken us (if we hadn't already appreciated) to the reality that really only we can keep ourselves healthy. And being proactive is worth even more than the proverbial "pound of cure."