7 Ways to Help Balance Estrogen in the Body

Methods to Help Manage Healthy Estrogen Balance

Hormonal balance is complicated. As women, we have a constant ebb and flow of hormones in our bodies that can greatly affect how we feel from day to day. Not only that, these hormones (estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone) work synergistically in the body to keep things running smoothly and hinge on a delicate balance that can easily be disrupted by lifestyle habits and environmental exposures. When that happens, we tend to feel, well, not quite right.

Estrogen dominance is the most common type of hormone imbalance—characterized by frequent headaches, mood swings and anxiety, bloating and weight gain, irregular periods, trouble sleeping, unexplained fatigue, worsened PMS symptoms, and more.1

Some of these symptoms may sound familiar to you. Maybe you’ve already been checked for estrogen dominance or hormonal imbalance. The good news is, there are a few things you can do to help manage estrogen dominance—starting today.

  1. Protect yourself from xenoestrogens.
    • This is perhaps the most important factor to consider and the most difficult to track. Now more than ever, we are surrounded by xenoestrogens: harmful chemical compounds that mimic estrogen in the body and may disrupt the delicate balance of the endocrine system. The scariest part is, many common household and beauty products contain them.2-4
    • What can you do about it? Whenever possible, choose organic beauty products made with safe, naturally derived ingredients. Common drugstore items often contain parabens, and other harmful chemicals—which are all sources of xenoestrogens. The same goes for common cleaning products and laundry items; those flowery fabric softeners and dryer sheets are thought to potentially do more harm than good. A quick Internet search can provide a plethora of more natural alternatives and DIY methods for keeping your house clean and your clothes soft!
  1. Switch up your diet.
    • You may find it helpful to avoid high-estrogen foods that may be contributing to a hormonal imbalance, like wheat, dairy, and soy,5-7 and eat liver-supportive foods. A healthy liver is key to the body’s detoxification process, as it helps to removes excess toxins (including excess estrogen) from the body. Leafy greens, cruciferous vegetables, healthy fats, and herbs like cilantro, turmeric, and milk thistle are some great options for targeted liver support that you can incorporate into your diet today.8-12 And whenever you face an afternoon slump at the office, sip green tea! It’s packed with antioxidants that help combat oxidative stress.
    • Whenever possible, choose foods labeled USDA Organic—free of antibiotics and hormones that could further contribute to hormone imbalance.
  1. Consider herbal supplements.
    • Herbs can be a simple way to help support healthy hormonal balance, and they’re easy to add to your daily routine. It’s important to note, however, that there’s no one-size-fits-all and no one herb will work the same for all women. Consult a healthcare professional to find out if herbal supplementation is right for you.*
    • Remember: Always speak to your healthcare practitioner first before starting a new supplement regimen. Herbs can be a powerful ally in your journey to optimal health, but they must be taken under expert, personalized guidance.
  1. Say no to plastic.
    • From plastic water bottles and kitchenware to plastic shampoo tubes, plastic is virtually everywhere. Why? Because it’s cheaper and easier to use. But with that convenience comes a very big cost—namely, the potentially health-compromising chemicals plastics can contain.13,14 That’s why you’ve likely been hearing the buzzword “BPA-free” a lot lately. Bisphenol-A (BPA) is another one of those xenoestrogens—possibly contributing to an increase in hormonal imbalance the more we are exposed to it.15
    • As an alternative to plastics, choose glass and stainless steel whenever possible. Think of it this way: Both are easier to clean and don’t harbor stains and smells like plastics do. When cooking, choose cast iron, stainless steel, or copper cookware to protect your food from toxic exposure.16
  1. Drink filtered water.
    • Think tap water is OK? Think again. In 2009, the Environmental Working Group published a three-year study that found 316 chemicals—including xenoestrogens—in tap water across the United States.17 And according to the World Health Organization, even “purified” water is not all it’s cracked up to be. That includes distilled and reverse osmosis water, which have been stripped of their healthful minerals.18 Bottled water is even worse; in fact, researchers have found multiple endocrine-disrupting chemicals in a single bottle of water.19
    • For the best source of hydration, invest in a high-quality water filter that removes harmful contaminants found in tap water without compromising mineral content. Best of all, faucet and countertop filters are inexpensive and super easy to use.
  1. Exercise.
    • With all the health benefits exercise has to offer, it’s an absolute necessity for optimal health. Studies have shown that regular aerobic exercise lowers estrogen levels in the body20,21—leaving you less susceptible to estrogen-imbalances and helping you build lean muscle mass.22 Not only will you feel better, you’ll look better, too.
  1. Relax.
    • You’ve heard it time and time again: too much stress can wreak havoc on your health. When your body is under stress, it releases stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. And when the stress is ongoing, the constant release of these hormones can disrupt your overall balance23,24 and cause physical symptoms like low energy, gastrointestinal disturbances, poor sleep quality, low libido, muscle tension, and more. Blow off steam with creative activities like singing, playing music, drawing, and dancing, or practice mindfulness exercises like yoga and meditation. Find what works for you and make it your go-to stress reliever!

 

Living with estrogen dominance does not have to be a lifelong challenge. With these alternative methods, you can limit your exposure to xenoestrogens and help regulate your body’s natural hormonal balance.

If you have not had your hormone levels checked and show signs of estrogen dominance, please visit your healthcare practitioner.

 

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

References:

  1. Wilson DR. Signs and symptoms of high estrogen. Healthline. https://www.healthline.com/health/high-estrogen. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  2. National University of Natural Medicine. Xenoestrogens—What are they? How to avoid them. Women in Balance Institute. https://womeninbalance.org/2012/10/26/xenoestrogens-what-are-they-how-to-avoid-them/. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  3. Watson CS, et al. Xenoestrogens are potent activators of nongenomic estrogenic responses. Steroids. 2007;72(2):124–134.
  4. De Coster S, et al. Endocrine-disrupting chemicals: associated disorders and mechanisms of action. J Environ Public Health. 2012;2012:713696.
  5. The Scripps Research Institute. Estrogen-mimicking compounds in foods may reduce effectiveness of breast cancer treatment. NewsWise. http://www.newswise.com/articles/estrogen-mimicking-compounds-in-foods-may-reduce-effectiveness-of-breast-cancer-treatment. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  6. Remesar X, et al. Estrone in food: a factor influencing the development of obesity? Eur J Nutr. 1999;38(5):247-253.
  7. Patisaul HB, et al. The pros and cons of phytoestrogens. Front Neuroendocrinol. 2010;31(4):400–419.
  8. Park G, et al. Skin Pharmacol Physiol. 2012;25(2):93-99.
  9. Suryanarayana P et al. Med Sci Monit. 2007;13(12):BR286-292.
  10. Robbins MG, et al.  J Food Sci. 2010;75(6):H190-199.
  11. Yoshida K, et al. World J Gastroenterol. 2015;21(35):10091-10103.
  12. Das SK et al. Indian J Biochem Biophys. 2006;43(5):306-311.
  13. Environmental Working Group. Timeline: BPA from invention to phase-out. EWG.org. https://www.ewg.org/research/timeline-bpa-invention-phase-out#.WqHgb5Pwau5. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  14. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Bisphenol (BPA) initiatives. NIH. https://www.niehs.nih.gov/research/programs/endocrine/bpa_initiatives/index.cfm. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  15. Endocrine Disruptors. https://www.niehs.nih.gov/health/topics/agents/endocrine/index.cfm. Accessed May 2, 2018.
  16. Environmental Working Group. EWG finds heated Teflon pans can turn toxic faster than DuPont claims. EWG.org. https://www.ewg.org/research/canaries-kitchen#.WqHhBJPwau6. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  17. Environmental Working Group. EWG’s tap water database. EWG.org. https://www.ewg.org/tapwater/#.WqHhUZPwau5. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  18. Kozisek F. Health Risks from Drinking Demineralised Water. National Institute of Public Health. Czech Republic.http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/nutrientschap12.pdf . Accessed May 2, 2018.
  19. Wagner M, et al. Identification of putative steroid receptor antagonists in bottled water: combining bioassays and high-resolution mass spectrometry. PLoS ONE. 2013;8(8):e72472.
  20. BreastCancer.org. Exercise lowers estrogen levels in older women. http://www.breastcancer.org/research-news/20100216. Accessed March 6, 2018.
  21. Kossman DA, et al. Exercise lowers estrogen and progesterone levels in premenopausal women at high risk of breast cancer. J Appl Physiol (1985). 2011;111(6):1687-1693.
  22. Maffulli N. Sports Medicine for Specific Ages and Abilities. United Kingdom: Churchill Livingstone; 2001.
  23. Maduka IC, et al. The relationship between serum cortisol, adrenaline, blood glucose and lipid profile of undergraduate students under examination stress. Afr Health Sci. 2015;15(1):131–136.
  24. Plechner AJ. Cortisol abnormality as a cause of elevated estrogen and immune destabilization: insights for human medicine from a veterinary perspective. Med Hypotheses. 2004;62(4):575-581.

Submitted by the Metagenics Marketing Team

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7 Ways to Live a Creative Life

Unless we’re artists, when we think of paintbrushes, play and simple pleasures, we often think that’s for people who aren’t that busy, people who don’t have the responsibilities I have, people who don’t have kids. That’s for people who are not me.  

But these things are the very ingredients of a meaningful, satisfying life. Of a creative life. And while different seasons allow for different opportunities, each of us has time for that.

According to Maya Benattar, LCAT, a music therapist and psychotherapist in New York City, a creative life is “being connected to a sense of play, spontaneity and permission.” She believes this is vital because it pulls us out of the everyday. It helps us connect to our true emotions, to who we really are, beneath our lengthy to-do lists.

For artist and art therapist Amy Maricle, LMHC, ATR-BC, a creative life means making art, spending time with other artists and recognizing that these activities are as critical as any self-care practice. “It means knowing there is an artist within you, and giving her some encouragement and a space to play.”

Whether she’s painting, writing or cooking, Maricle feels like the creative energy flows through her. “Art makes me feel connected to something bigger than myself.”

Stephanie Medford, an artist, writer and teacher, views a creative life as “a life of curiosity, wonder, play, and a little bit of magic.” It means paying attention to life’s details and small miracles. It means finding a way to share what she’s experienced with others.

When Medford starts to lose touch with her creativity, everything else also starts to wither. “When I’m not making room for creativity, I’m not present, and when I’m not present, I become consumed with worries, fears and judgment.”

Creativity also is a powerful cycle for Medford: The more she writes or makes art, the more open she is to curiosity, awe and wonder. The more curious she is, the more she pays attention and spots inspiration, which makes it easier to write and make art.

“When the cycle is working, I feel alive and my life [has] purpose. I feel more interested in what’s happening in the world, and more engaged and connected to other people.”

“A creative life to us is mainly: keeping an open mind,” said Irene Smit and Astrid van der Hulst, the founders and creative directors of Flow Magazine. For instance, when they started their magazine a decade ago, there were many rules for creating a successful publication—like having a smiling woman on the cover and not having blank pages. However, Smit and van der Hulst were drawn to covers of notebooks and children’s books and pages with quotes and illustrations. So they did what felt right to them. They still do, letting what resonates with them and makes them smile dictate their decisions.

How you define a creative life is really up to you. Below you’ll find an assortment of ideas—from connecting to your inner child to seeing the world anew to playing with specific projects.

Prioritize play. Benattar encouraged readers to play, “whatever playing means to you, whatever helps you feel lighter and freer.” “Find something that feels like flow and lets you turn your brain off a bit.”

You might define play as improvising musically, cooking, dancing or going to a playground. You might choose to swing on the swings, instead of trying a new art technique, Benattar said. Thinking back to your childhood may give you some good hints. For instance, you might build blanket forts, spin elaborate stories or run at top speed, she said.

Channel your creativity into everything. “I love being creative in a lot of the things I do,” said Maricle, founder of Mindful Art Studio. “It makes my life feel more meaningful and rich.” In addition to visual art, she channels her creativity into writing, dancing and cooking.

Follow the questions. Medford likes walking in the woods, where she sees and hears a lot of birds. Which sparked her curiosity. The more she researches these birds, the more excited she is to get outside and observe. “Lately birds have started appearing in my artwork as well, since they’re becoming such a powerful symbol of wonder for me.” What questions are you curious about? Follow them.

Start a long-term project. Medford calls this her go-to strategy for staying inspired and creating regularly. She picks something with specific parameters and an end goal. She then carves out time every week to work on it.

In the past, she’s done every exercise in the book Draw, Paint, Print Like the Great Artists by Marion Deuchars; given herself weekly drawing assignments for an entire year, with different monthly themes; and read 100 poems and created an Instagram post for each one. What long-term project can you take on? (Maybe pick one you think you absolutely can’t do, and prove yourself wrong.)

Go offline often. Smit and van der Hulst used to answer emails in the evenings and on vacation. They used to fill up quiet moments with their smartphones. Today, however, they savor more time offline, which actually ignites their imagination. “The best ideas come to us when we are standing in the queue at the supermarket, when we are bored, just sitting on the couch or in the sun, when we are waiting for a train.”

When we’re staring at our screens, we miss things, tender things, silly things, inspiring things: “a stork building its nest as you ride past on the train, the conversation two little kids are having while you’re waiting at the baker’s, the lamp a woman has placed on her head like a hat for a fancy-dress party.”

Make it easy to make art. Maricle suggested dedicating a space in your home for art making—no matter how small. “Leave your art out and in process, it will tempt you to keep going.” She also suggested carrying a portable art kit, filled with items like a small notebook and fun pens. This way as you’re waiting in the car or doctor’s office instead of scrolling, you can doodle and sketch and write.

Take your time. Living a creative life also means taking your time, according to Smit and van der Hulst, authors of A Book That Takes Its Time and the forthcoming Creativity Takes Courage. “When you slow down your pace, there is more time to enjoy the little things around you, to see the details in the street where you are walking, to smell the flowers, to stay open to what happens around you.” When we slow down, they said, it’s naturally easier to savor life’s tiny but meaningful pleasures.

For Medford engaging in activities such as writing, drawing and collage making is important. But what matters more is “the everyday attitude of creativity, of seeing the world as an interesting, awe-inspiring place, worthy of being explored.”

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The Journal of Best Practices: A Memoir of Marriage, Asperger Syndrome, and One Man’s Quest to Be a Better Husband

The warm and hilarious bestselling memoir by a man diagnosed with Asperger syndrome who sets out to save his marriage.

At some point in nearly every marriage, a wife finds herself asking, What the @#!% is wrong with my husband?! In David Finch’s case, this turns out to be an apt question. Five years after he married Kristen, the love of his life, they learn that he has Asperger syndrome. The diagnosis explains David’s ever-growing list of quirks and compulsions, but it doesn’t make him any easier to live with.

Determined to change, David sets out to understand Asperger syndrome and learn to be a better husband with an endearing yet hilarious zeal. His methods for improving his marriage involve excessive note-taking, performance reviews, and most of all, the Journal of Best Practices: a collection of hundreds of maxims and hard-won epiphanies, including “Don’t change the radio station when she’s singing along” and “Apologies do not count when you shout them.” Over the course of two years, David transforms himself from the world’s most trying husband to the husband who tries the hardest. He becomes the husband he’d always meant to be.

Filled with humor and surprising wisdom, The Journal of Best Practices is a candid story of ruthless self-improvement, a unique window into living with an autism spectrum condition, and proof that a true heart can conquer all.

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Hope & Resiliency: Understanding the Psychotherapeutic Strategies of Milton H. Erickson

Milton H. Erickson is recognised as one of the most innovative clinicians of our time. Known as the father of modern hypnosis and the source of inspiration for many forms of family therapy and brief therapy (including the increasingly popular solution-focused therapy) Erickson s influence has reached far beyond the perimeters of any one country or culture.
Much of the scientific and popular literature is beginning to focus on the themes of hope and resiliency – Erickson worked from a philosophical position that is best explained using these two concepts.
Although Erickson is most commonly examined through the lens of hypnosis, this book takes a much broader approach and defines several key components that made him successful as a therapist. The fundamental strategies described are relevant to all mental health care professionals, regardless of their theoretical orientation. The book is written by leaders and experts in the field of Ericksonian therapy.

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Tim Sweeney’s Guide to Releasing Independent Records

Ask any major label A&R rep and they’ll tell you: the best way to develop your music career is to release your own record. What they won’t tell you is how to make your release a success by getting your record played on major college and commercial radio stations, reviewed in key music publications, and stocked in national chain and independent record stores.

That’s why you need Tim Sweeney’s Guide To Releasing Independent Records. Packed with hundreds of money-saving tips, helpful hints, and never-before-revealed secret strategies used by industry insiders, this informative guide will teach how you to set up your own independent record label; make a great-sounding record without spending a lot of money; get quality distribution into major retail chains and indie record stores; design a winning promotional strategy for your release; convince college and commercial radio stations to play your record, and use the exposure generated by your release to bring! yourself to the attenetion of a larger label.

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First Congress Took Sex Workers’ Websites. Now It’s Coming For Their Bank Accounts.

Huffington Post

“What a lot of organizers are worried about is how these broad anti-trafficking initiatives are often applied in a targeted manner that hurts more vulnerable people rather than helps them,” Liara Roux, a sex worker and producer of independent adult media, told HuffPost. “If this bill is passed in a climate where sex work is so stigmatized that no distinction is made between a trafficked individual and someone who is just trying to survive, you’re just as likely to see vulnerable people’s bank accounts closed as actual traffickers caught.”

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​How Technology Affects The Way Our Brain Works

Author imageTechnology has transformed the way we live, work, communicate and entertain ourselves. At the click of a button, we can conduct transactions, get information, learn new skills and even find love.

Our generation has seen the most drastic jumps in technological advances and this has not only changed the way we perceive the world but also how our brains receive and process information. We seem unable to tear ourselves from our smartphones, tablets and innumerable social networking platforms, going so far as keeping our devices near us all day.

One Gallup poll revealed that more than 50 percent of all smartphone users in the US check their mobile devices a few times an hour or more, and an astonishing 63 percent can’t bear to part with their mobile gadgets, keeping them nearby while sleeping at night. Young people use their smartphones more than any other age group with more than 70 percent of those polled checking their devices a few times or more every hour.

Living in this digital age means that we have come to rely on devices in one way or another. However, how many of us give any attention to how technology is affecting our behavior, relationships or lives? Maybe we should be more mindful of how often we use technology since it’s been found to alter our brains in these 5 ways:

1. We now have shorter attention spans and are more distracted.

Before the deluge of iPhones, iPads and other devices, the average person had an attention span of about 12 seconds. Now it’s believed that we can only concentrate for about 8 seconds on average before moving on to something else. Fun fact: the average attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds!

It’s hard to stay on task with all the distractions we have these days. Something is always going viral, there are new trends to follow and our phone lights are always winking to alert us to new messages. These tech distractions affect our relationships, productivity and ability to learn — all of which require a certain level of concentration. Being constantly inundated with information also impacts our creativity and ability to be contemplative.

2. We’ve improved our ability to multitask (at least we think we have).

Many of us brag about how we can do several things at once. We say we can talk on the phone, watch YouTube videos and compose email replies at the same time. While that certainly sounds impressive, research reminds us that performing different activities that rely on the same type of brain processing isn’t possible. Doing so only reduces brain efficiency and makes it harder for us to retain information.

3. We’ve become tech addicts.

Admit it. You’re guilty of stopping work to check your phone once the message tone pings or stealing a few minutes to check your Twitter timeline or Facebook feed. There’s a certain gratification that comes with seeing new notifications and messages which is why some of us compulsively check social media platforms numerous times each day, spending hours blissfully scrolling down those pages. Even worse, some individuals end up suffering from video or mobile game addiction, needing rehab and professional help to detox.

The reason for this is simple: technology has built-in gratification that stimulates the pleasure centers of the brain, keeping us coming back for more.

4. Our face-to-face interactions have been undermined.

Have you ever been out with friends and at some point noticed all of you were spending more time staring at your screens than chatting with each other? Or during your train ride realized everyone was busy on their cellphones, oblivious to the world? We have technology to thank for turning us into zombies.

These days we rely on emojis to express our feelings and prefer online interactions to in-person conversations. It’s even worse for kids and teens who’ve grown up in the digital era since many haven’t developed conversation skills or learned to read social cues. As a result, many miss out on major aspects of natural communication.

5. We’re becoming more forgetful.

Research has revealed that many millennials are more forgetful than seniors — something that can be attributed to the constant use of technology. In order to remember something, we need to move that information from our working memory (conscious mind) to our long-term memory and this hinges on our attentiveness.

But thanks to technology, we are constantly taking in new information, barely having enough time to think about it and commit it to memory before something else grabs our attention. This impacts our memory and makes us more forgetful.

While technology has countless benefits, it also has some drawbacks. The best way to have a balanced life and mitigate some of the negative effects of technology is to commit to setting aside our mobile devices for a few hours each day. Meditation, yoga and exercise can also help us focus on living in the moment. Taking time to put down our phones and consciously contemplate what’s in front of us will go a long way towards improving our lives.

References

Newport, F. (2015). Most U.S. Smartphone Owners Check Phone at Least Hourly. Retrieved from http://news.gallup.com/poll/184046/smartphone-owners-check-phone-least-hourly.aspx

Galasso Bonanno, S. (2016). Social Media’s Impact on Relationships. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 17, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/lib/social-medias-impact-on-relationships/

McSpadden, K. (2015). You Now Have a Shorter Attention Span Than a Goldfish. Time Health. Retrieved from http://time.com/3858309/attention-spans-goldfish/

Elgan, M. (2017). Smartphones make people distracted and unproductive. Computerworld. Retrieved from https://www.computerworld.com/article/3215276/smartphones/smartphones-make-people-distracted-and-unproductive.html

Nauert PhD, R. (2017). Imaging Study Shows Multitasking Reduces Brain Efficiency. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 17, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/news/2017/04/26/imaging-study-shows-multitasking-reduces-brain-efficiency/119664.html

Carter, A. (2017). A New Addiction on the Rise: Mobile Game Addiction. Retrieved from https://www.addictions.com/blog/a-new-addiction-on-the-rise-mobile-game-addiction/

Social media’s impact on self-esteem & its effects on teens today. Retrieved from https://www.sundancecanyonacademy.com/social-medias-impact-on-self-esteem-its-effects-on-teens-today-infographic/

Emling, S. (2013). Study Shows Millennials Are More Forgetful Than Seniors. The Huffington Post. Retrieved from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/02/millennial-forgetfulness_n_3695512.html

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“STEM & Feminism with Erin Heaney & Dr. Greg Marks – Ep 043 American Sex Podcast

This week Ken & Sunny interview a pair of high school teachers. Erin Heaney and Dr. Greg Marks are dedicated to making sure women and girls have equal access and representation in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math). Why is this important and what does it have to do with sex and relationships? Surprisingly a […]

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Ep 11: Listener Feedback: Criticism on our Mental Illness Advocacy

“Haters gonna hate” and “don’t feed the trolls” are common phrases anyone who has an internet following has heard – or said – a dozen times. For reasons that aren’t entirely clear, Gabe (bipolar) and Michelle (schizophrenia) decide to discuss some of their “favorite” less-than-positive feedback.

They discuss how the comments made them feel, what they learned from them, and what they honestly think of the people who wrote them. Suffice to say that mental health advocacy isn’t for the weak.

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“You can send me the nastiest emails, I still know I’m fabulous.”
– Michelle Hammer

Highlights From ‘Mental Illness Advocacy’ Episode

[0:20] Gabe and Michelle talk about negative feedback they receive about their mental health advocacy.

[2:25] Gabe reads a negative email that Michelle received about her brand and advocacy.

[8:20] Michelle reads an email Gabe received about her stating that her diagnosis is incorrect.

[11:58] Gabe reads a comment Michelle received on her WebMD Video saying she is faking schizophrenia.

[16:35] Michelle reads an extremely angry email that was sent to Gabe about his views on a piece of mental health legislation.

[22:45] Michelle and Gabe each read a negative email about the podcast.

[28:00] Gabe’s tells the story of scary “gift” he received at his home.


A bipolar, A schizophrenic, and a Podcast

Meet The Hosts of #BSPodcast

GABE HOWARD was formally diagnosed with bipolar and anxiety disorders after being committed to a psychiatric hospital in 2003. Now in recovery, Gabe is a prominent mental health activist and host of the award-winning Psych Central Show podcast. He is also an award-winning writer and speaker, traveling nationally to share the humorous, yet educational, story of his bipolar life. To work with Gabe, visit gabehoward.com.

 

MICHELLE HAMMER was officially diagnosed with schizophrenia at age 22, but incorrectly diagnosed with bipolar disorder at 18. Michelle is an award-winning mental health advocate who has been featured in press all over the world. In May, 2015, Michelle founded the company Schizophrenic.NYC, a mental health clothing line, with the mission of reducing stigma by starting conversations about mental health. She is a firm believer that confidence can get you anywhere. To work with Michelle, visit Schizophrenic.NYC.

..

 

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The Grieving Parents Club: How to Survive, Cope and Heal After the Death of a Child

Like millions of other parents, Dr. Kelly Barbour-Conerty was living a normal life, spending time with her daughters, watching them grow up and making plans for their futures. Then, in the blink of an eye, along with the screeching of tires and the crushing of a metal car frame, that normality came to a sudden and horrific end. Her 16 year-old daughter, Lexi, was killed in a car crash only 1 ½ miles from home on the way to a meeting of her church youth group, and Kelly instantly became the newest member of The Grieving Parents Club. 

For years, Kelly has lived and struggled with a new normal-one that doesn’t include Lexi. Like so many other grieving parents before her, she has grappled with the big questions–Why did this happen to my child? How can I go on without my child? and the small ones-Do I hang a Christmas stocking? What should I do with her things? 

Kelly knows first-hand of the darkness that comes with the grief after the death of a child, but with the help of other members of the Club who felt her pain and kindly offered advice at every stage of the grieving process, she has learned how to survive, cope and heal, and how to bring a ray of light, hope, and joy to other grieving parents. 

If you are a grieving parent, or know one, Kelly’s new Amazon #1 bestseller, The Grieving Parents Club: How to Survive, Cope and Heal after the Death of a Child, can help. By sharing her journey through this hardest grief and the insights that she has gained over the years from other members of the Club, Kelly hopes to let other grieving parents know that they are never alone in their journey. 

No matter what, members of the Grieving Parents Club will be there to help each other.

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Source: spa