It’s the day after Halloween, and my dining room table is completely covered with candy. Some of my old favorites are featured: Reese’s pumpkins, peanut M&Ms, Milky Way, and Heath. In our house, my kids get to pick their favorite pieces, no more than ten (I’m flexible because the size varies), and the rest gets donated. Mom and Dad get to save a few as well, because ’tis the season, right?
I know there’s an intuitive eating movement to let kids have all the access and listen to their bodies for stopping cues, and I respect that… but it doesn’t line up with what we know about brain health. Big Food Patriarchy wants your kids (their consumers/users) hooked on candy for a lifetime, so of course they develop their products to hit the bliss point of food, without ever feeling the physiological satiation or urge to stop.
I’m all about teaching my kids to listen to their bodies, but we also have to understand the neurotransmitter hijack that occurs with these engineered food products and the long term impact on developing brains.
It’s not about willpower, discipline, or being able to eat intuitively. It’s about understanding that our brains are wired for survival. And anything that gets our serotonin and dopamine hitting harder and faster pumps up our norepinephrine to make us feel good in the moment – until we don’t anymore, and we need another stronger hit.
This is a tough conversation, but it is important to be aware of the way our kids’ nutrition impacts mood, concentration, focus, and overall health. Nutrition plays a direct role in neurotransmitter function, so we can’t have an honest conversation about kids’ mental health without addressing nutrition!
Dr. Joan Ifland, PhD, MBA, FACN, is a Nutrition Researcher & Processed Food Addiction Counselor. Dr. Ifland is a Fellow of the American College of Nutrition and she holds her PhD in Addictive Nutrition. She has 20 years’ experience in the field of food addiction and recovery. The Founder of Food Addiction Reset, Dr. Ifland is a leading expert in the field, author of the textbook on the topic. Processed food marketed to children has a powerful impact on their brain function with long-term consequences.
Download this episode here or find wherever you get podcasts.
Rai Moorhead is a a Master Certified Health Coach with over 15 years of professional and personal experience with health, nutrition and fitness. She specializes in helping women reframe negative thought patterns about eating and exercise into positive affirmations. She is passionate about helping women see that true beauty is beyond the scale and the mirror.
In this episode, we cover all the tips and tricks to support busy moms and their family’s health! Download here or find wherever you get podcasts.
Dr. Roseann Capanna-Hodge is a mental health trailblazer, founder of The Global Institute of Children’s Mental Health and Dr. Roseann & Associates, who FORBES magazine called, “A thought leader in children’s mental health.”
Her new book, “It’s Gonna Be Ok: Proven Ways to Improve Your Child’s Mental Health” is available now.
In this episode we discuss her book and why her information and methods have been helpful and life-changing for so many parents and children. Download here or find wherever you get podcasts!
Symptom reversal and reduction in kids
Pros and cons of labels
The latest research on meds and kids
How to change the dialogue on kids’ mental health
Eight pillars of mental health
How to regulate your child’s nervous system
The foods that power up kids’ brains
How low fat foods increase depression
How 100% of people on ADHD meds have side effects
How to improve sleep habits
For more information, follow Dr. Roseann on social media @drroseann or at her website drroseann.com.
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I have been so ready for this latest episode of the podcast to air! If you are a parent, caregiver, teacher, or if you have any proximity to kids at all – download this episode ASAP!
Dr. Roseann Capanna-Hodge is a mental health trailblazer who Forbes has called “The leader in children’s mental health.” She has helped thousands reverse the most challenging conditions, such as ADHD, anxiety, mood, autism, learning disability, Lyme, and PANS/PANDAS using proven holistic therapies.
In this episode, we discuss the anxiety epidemic affecting our children, why it has been happening, and what we can do about it.
Children’s mental health issues continue to rise, and now one of every four children will be diagnosed with a chronic condition by the time they are eight years old. How can we support the health of our children through nutrition?
Reed Davis, Founder of Functional Diagnostic Nutrition, joins the podcast once again to offer his expertise after decades of helping thousands of clients get to the root of their health issues. Download the episode here or find wherever you get podcasts.
Thanksgiving was last week and I think many may be suffering from “kitchen fatigue.” Whether it’s the limitless sides and casseroles and baking, or unending prep and clean up, I know there are many of you out there who just don’t want to think about food after a holiday.
So let’s get back to basics. Let’s keep it simple! Step inside my kitchen for a second, and I will share my favorite ways for simplifying cooking in a way that packs in the nutrients.
The first thing I do after a time of celebrating or a big holiday is consider how I can up my veggie load again. Veggies make me feel good and my brain clear, and even though I turned just about every vegetable I know of into some kind of casserole for Thanksgiving dinner, I missed the simplicity of roasting them or throwing them into a quick salad.
This is where my favorite tried and true principle of “cook once, eat a few times” comes in.
With everything going on in the world, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. I recently sat down with my friend, fellow health coach, Melissa McGaughey, and we discussed how to simplify our daily needs into just THREE things we are focusing on for our continued health.
But we didn’t just stop with us and our needs. We expanded the conversation to include the top three things that our kids need every day. You can listen to the entire episode here.
Key topics include:
Our favorite easy ways to include more whole foods into our daily diet
Why sunshine is the best way to “charge your battery”
The types of exercise we’re loving right now
Sleep hygiene and why it’s time to find some blue light blocking glasses
The importance of meditation and intentional breathing
Mindset and gratitude and the impact it makes on our whole body health
No matter where you are in your health journey, this episode will help inspire you to keep going and incorporate tiny habits to make a big impact.
I don’t have to remind anyone that the last few weeks of this pandemic and period of social distance have been unlike anything experienced or seen in our lifetime. My work schedule has been interrupted, my husband’s work schedule has been interrupted, our social life has disappeared, and my kids are completely thrown off. Field trips were cancelled, basketball season has been delayed, and school went online until…when? Do we even know? Dates spin in and out of my head, fighting for the return of normalcy. Is it April 9th? 21st? Or do we wait for the 30th to resume prior activities? I can’t even keep track.
This kind of disruption and uncertainty is difficult for me. Change of all kind is hard for me, especially as one who fights to stay mentally stable. I get the opportunity to verbalize that, share about it with my friends (via phone or text only, of course), and have long discussions with my husband.
My kids, however, don’t know how to express their fear or anxiety as well. For them, it comes out in misbehavior, aggression, moodiness, hyperactivity, tearfulness, or even closed off apathy. That is developmentally understandable. As their prefrontal cortexes are still developing, it is difficult for them to access emotions or positive decision-making when they are in fight or flight mode. A stressful trigger, like being told they can no longer see their friends or go to school, is going to take a toll on their bodies. Stress hormones get ramped up, contributing to more fear and anxiety that is difficult to process. Chronic stress can also affect the immune system and its function.
This is true for adults as well. Even though we have the luxury of developed brains, it is still difficult to access our frontal lobe and respond appropriately to hardship when we are faced with extreme stressors.