Does nutrition have anything to do with mental health? Or is it in your genes? Yes to both.

Are anxiety and MTHFR linked? Let me explain.

Nutrition is critical for best physical health. More and more people consider seeing a clinical nutritionist to help their body feel at its best. But as for mental health? Leave that to the psychologists. That’s nothing to do with nutrition, right?

Wrong.

I never thought I’d say this, but you can actually believe some things you read in the newspaper.

The Courier Mail (a daily paper in Brisbane, Australia) published an article recently that got me jumping up and down with excitement. It described a genetic issue with a gene called “MTHFR”, and a treatment approach that we as integrative clinical nutritionists are using – and with reasonable accuracy at that!

“How a vitamin cured my anxiety: Elisa Black’s story of lifelong struggle and new hope for the future”.

A vitamin cured her anxiety? Surely that’s just another sensationalist tabloid headline?

Well in this case, no.

This was a story of personal triumph based on a nutritional link with anxiety, depression and other mood disorders that is supported by research and finally gaining a mainstream foothold.

The condition she describes – the MTHFR gene polymorphism – is increasingly being tested for by a range of clinicians due to its relevance to a huge range of health conditions, some life-threatening, some chronic, but all causing enormous suffering.

If you missed it, read it in full here. It’s not long, and is skilfully written – it manages to condense a complex topic into an easy to understand summary within a touching real-life story.

I am treating an enormous number of patients with anxiety – some officially diagnosed, and some just plainly obvious to them and to me. I am also treating numerous patients with an MTHFR gene polymorphism as described in the article. And of course – I am treating quite a number of patients with both anxiety and MTHFR.

Aside from mental health issues, other conditions my MTHFR patients have include chronic pain, recurrent miscarriage, infertility, thyroid issues, gut issues, migraines and chronic fatigue.

Identifying the MTHFR gene polymorphism, if present, is step one. (But just because you have the faulty gene doesn’t mean you will definitely have problems. Seeing if it is linked to your problems is all part of the evaluation.)

Step two is implementing a specific nutrition program (with attention to lifestyle as well) to help the body compensate for the “weak link in the chain” that is the MTHFR gene polymorphism.

Here are my recommendations:

  1. Read the article here.

  2. Share it with your doctor.

  3. If your doctor is not knowledgeable about testing for and treating problems that can arise from this, find a clinician who is.

To get nutritional help for your mental health problems linked with MTHFR, contact me for an appointment.

I can directly refer you for the test, and have undergone specialised training in the relevant nutritional treatment.

I’ll help you on the path to recovery.

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