Food is the Best Medicine - Interview with one of my mentors
Dr. Robert Harris was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in 2010, after an army colleague noticed his right arm wouldn't swing when he marched in 2007. Stationed on a base in Texas, near a chemical plant there leaking chemicals, and in Yugoslavia where he was exposed to nerve agents, Dr. Harris suffered gradual nerve damage from the built-up toxins in his body.
After experiencing severe side effects from medicines he had taken to combat the symptoms, he turned to nutrition for help. Having a doctorate degree in Sociology, he understood good research practices, untouched by advertisement falsehoods. Eventually he stumbled upon NutritionFacts.org, Dr. Gregor's nutrition fact website. Dr. Gregor creates a vlog where he explains the most up-to-date research on nutrition. After our call, I perused videos on artificial sweeteners, which detailed the effects they have on one's body by citing research. It was super informative, I came out of it understanding the dangers of Sucralose and how naturally sourced means little about its safety.
I'd need to check out other websites to form an opinion on its validity, not knowing the science or having conducted research, but at a cursory glance, and from the reassurance of Dr. Harris, I trust their judgement to a certain level.
Here's how we met:
Three years ago, in early 2014, I decided to get off my psychotropic medications. They had been given to me by my family out of fear of how I'd acted as a kid. My first pill was in 4th grade, when I was 10 years old.
I had over time internalized that I was mentally ill, and that this medication would heal me. Much of this was the mentality my family had, and the mentality many modern families have when faced with a health issue which at some level presents itself in the brain. With the advertisements we see quite often, blaming symptoms (which are more often than not, treatable with lifestyle, exercise and diet changes) on specific chemical imbalances and offering powerful chemicals in pill form as the solution.
I met Dr. Harris and started wellness counseling. He imparted sociological research and lifestyle, exercise and diet advice to me over the course of about a year.
When I first got off my medication, before balance was introduced into my life through having a clean body, I had severe withdrawal symptoms.
By forming a diet based off plants and grains (I find a different type of diet works much better for me now, with little grains and ample animal products) under Dr. Bob's counseling, I brought myself through the withdrawal, into an exercise routine and into health. It goes to show that even in the face of intense hardship, with the right action and the right persistence, you will prevail!
I've gotten clear blood labs across the board in my recent checkups, and stabilized in all areas - mood, energy, strength - after taking control of my body from the medication. The Food/Mood journal Dr. Bob introduced enabled me to become aware of how strongly my foods and my moods were correlated.
Dr. Bob preaches to the people around him how closely food and mood are correlated. 90% of your Serotonin in your body is produced in your gut. In what's called the "Enteric brain." It presides over the movement of your intestines, the blood flow, communication to the brain of nutrition levels in your blood... It's the "gut" people feel when they "feel it in their gut." And if you eat the wrong stuff, that's one of the places in your body which is first affected! Throwing off your neurotransmitters, destabilizing your mood and causing all kinds of hecticness, moreso than too much cookie crumbs in your beard.
So check what you eat, see if changing your grub to become more health-minded based on evidence and science alters your life for the better and start exercising. It was a life-saver for me!