When we think about mental health, too often we don’t take our diet into consideration. Yet the food we eat can have a great impact on the way we think and feel. Almost everyone by now knows that too much E numbers can affect children’s behavior, but there is more to our food than that.
If you would like to learn more about how our diet affects our mental and physical performance, I can really recommend

Vitamins and supplements to alleviate stress


In my practice as a counsellor I often meet people who were advised by their GP to take an antidepressant, but are reluctant to do so. Counselling enables you to address the issues that make your life stressful, but I would also suggest small changes in your diet and lifestyle, that will make a big difference.

These are the vitamins and supplements you might consider taking before starting on a serious medication.

Research indicates that the majority of mentally and emotionally ill have deficiencies in B-vitamin complex. The recommended daily dose is 25-50mg daily. Even completely balanced and happy people tend to become depressed and experience other symptoms of emotional disturbance when made niacin or folic acid deficient.

Another mineral, essential for our mental wellbeing, is Magnesium. It is important for proper nerve functioning. Recommended dose – 250-500 mg daily. Calcium alleviates tension and promotes relaxation, recommended daily dose – Calcium, 500-1,000mg.

Omega-3 is another great mood booster – it contains DHA, which forms about half of all the fat in brain cell membranes. It is needed to build and preserve pliable brain cell structures so the brain can work effectively. DHA is shown to improve mood by boosting serotonin levels. You need to take a supplement for at least a month before you will feel the difference. When you buy a supplement, make sure it contains both EHA and DHA.

Give these vitamins and supplements a try and enjoy increased levels of energy and vitality!



Millions of women are affected by PMT every month, yet very often it is dismissed by health practitioners as a “just in your head” sort of thing. The term PMT is used to describe the wide range of physical and emotional discomforts: bloating and indigestion, insomnia and depression, anxiety, cramps, anger and irritability. If there are some pressing problems in your life that require a solution, PMT might make them seem bigger and more acute. No amount of health supplements or medication will help you get rid of these issues, so before you start working on your PMT it is advisable to give your attention to all the unresolved issues in your life. It might be helpful to process your feelings with the help of a qualified counsellor.
But if there is nothing tangible that need sorting in your life and you are still feeling nervous, anxious and tense at this time of the month, then you could try these vitamins and supplements.

Vitamin B6, 50-300mg daily
Magnesium, 500mg and calcium, 250mg, daily
Vitamin B5, 1000mg daily
Evening Primrose oil, 500mg, 1-3 times daily

You could try traditional herbal remedies, such as Dong quai and black cohosh, preferably after a consultation with a qualified herbalist. Ayurvedic herbal remedy Triphala aids digestion and has a calming effect.

Exercise will help improve abdominal circulation and perspiration will remove excess fluids. It is also recommended to avoid certain foods before and during your period – salt and salty foods, cold foods and beverages, alcohol and caffeine in all form. Foods to increase are:
strawberries, watermelon, artichokes, asparagus, parsley and watercress (these are natural diuretics); raw sunflower seeds, dates, figs, peaches, bananas, potatoes, peanuts and tomatoes (rich in potassium).