How I healed postpartum anxiety by addressing my gut health

How I healed postpartum anxiety by addressing my gut health

I know what you’re thinking.

How can you reduce anxiety by addressing your gut health?

But…Does this sound familiar?
  • bloating
  • pain with eating gluten or dairy
  • skin eruptions
  • exhaustion
  • seasonal allergies
  • recurring yeast infections
  • achy joints and muscles
  • eczema

Imagine ….

….what if would be like to not have to worry about your digestion so much

…to feel at ease, when you eat out or at your mother-in-laws

…to not have to bring your own food to parties

The interesting part?

We are never taught how to heal our bodies after having children.

There is only one postpartum doctor’s appointment for you, yet there are several for your child.

Why is that?

So, what’s the answer? The 4R approach.

First… click below for your FREE gut health questionnaire.

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What is the 4R approach?

This method addresses the underlying causes of gut imbalances and restores harmony, helping to alleviate symptoms and maybe even disease.

The program suggests you: Remove> Reinoculate> Repair> Reintroduce

healing stomach lining

How do you heal your gut?

  • Remove all triggers: i.e. all allergens and cross reactors like gluten and dairy.
  • Get off medications (with Dr.’s approval and replace them with natural remedies ).
  • Reduce your stress with meditation, exercise, and botanicals.
  • Heal your gut lining with the 4R approach below.

1. Remove

Take out what ails you.  

The top allergens are:

  • wheat
  • corn
  • eggs
  • dairy
  • peanuts
  • soybeans.

Add in whole grains (like quinoa and rice), organic vegetables, fruit, and healthy fats.

  • Remove allergens for 4-6 weeks {or it may take up to a year to heal your gut if you have an auto-immune disease}
  • Encourage whole, organic foods
  • Consider shopping the perimeter of the grocery store

2. Replace

#1 After 2-4 weeks on the Elimination diet..

#2 Add in bitters

  • I like  Urban Moonshine Bitters
    • This will trigger the digestive system to produce digestive enzymes, secrete bile and balance HCI levels in the stomach.  
    • Take bitters 10-15 minutes before your meal.
    • If you have a lot of nausea with meals or when you take supplements, you might also need some additional stomach acid in the form of a supplement called Betaine HCl, or try 1 Tbs. of apple cider vinegar in water with your meals. {click on links above to see the companies I love}

3.  Reinoculate

Wait 2 weeks on the elimination diet or up to 6 weeks before adding in a probiotic.

  Adding in a probiotic can give you gas and bloating if you do not remove the allergens first.

  • Add a good quality probiotic to restore your gut flora.  I like Klair probiotics.
  • You want it to have a minimum of 5 billion CFU in each dose, and a good range of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria species.
  • Fermented foods such as miso, sauerkraut, and kimchee can also be a helpful advantage to your gut, add it into your diet 3-4x week. Although very delicious, kombucha can be high in sugar so consider using sparingly.

4. Repair

Include the following supplement for 6-weeks or more to repair your gut.

The following supplements can be taken for up to 6 months to help to heal the intestinal lining:

  • Tumeric- I personally like to take turmeric in a blended tincture like Adrena nourish
  • Aloe vera
  • Marshmallow root powder
  • DGL licorice (aloe and licorice are not for internal use during pregnancy; these are fine for children) are some of the most effective herbs for healing the gut lining.
    • They are best taken in capsule or extract form, though turmeric can also be added to foods.
      • Do you get heartburn?
        • DGL or diglyceride licorice is a great alternative to tums and does not raise your blood pressure. DGL licorice is available as chewable lozenges and thus may be the simplest one to give to kids.
        • Klair labs has one here or Pure encapsulation combines aloe, slippery elm, and marshmallow root together!
  • Zinc: 5-10 mg/day for children 4-7 years, 10-20 mg/day for children to age 12, 25-40 mg/day for older children and adults.
  • An antioxidant supplement
    • Look for one containing vitamins A and carotenoids, C, E, and selenium. 
    • These are often found in a multivitamin.
    • Pregnant women should get these from their prenatal vitamin only.

Conclusion

If you scored high on the gut health questionnaire, these herbal supplements will help you heal your gut and reduce unwanted digestive issues, along with healing anxiety.  Elimination diets alone will not work unless you add in the gut-healing remedies.

Have questions? Send me an email or book a women’s health consultation.

7 life-changing meditations for postpartum anxiety

7 life-changing meditations for postpartum anxiety

Be honest.

Meditations don’t really work for you.

But… what if you could be more mindful more often? What if you felt like you had more time on your hands? Would you try it?

The truth?

Once I carved out time for daily meditation – my anxiety finally shifted. It’s a non-negotiable. I practice it every day.

But don’t forget… your body loves repetition.

👉Action Step: Try to find 10-minutes a day to practice one of these meditations for at least 30 days.

Then reach out.  I’d love to know if you have success!

Let’s get started.

#1 Gabrielle Bernstein- Cord-cutting meditation

This was the first shift I ever experienced.  This meditation is included in her online membership or you can pay $4 for this transformation.  Practice it daily when you want to complete a ‘necessary ending’, something that is not serving you.


#2 Manifesting Meditation

 


#3 Mary Kate is my go-to girl for removing any money blocks! We all have them.  Clear your thoughts about money and step into the Present Momma you crave to be.

#4 Morning Meditation: Practice this daily for miracles


#5 Have you tried hypnosis? The Mindful movement meditations are amazing.  These are my favorites.

#6 If you’re sleep-deprived and feeling tired and wired.. .try yoga Nidra before bed or if you get woken up and cannot fall asleep.

#7 Trauma from childbirth, from your childhood, from a relationship, can be causing your anxiety.  Try this meditation daily.

Give yourself 30-days to try these meditations.  Then take time to journal afterward.

Could this work for you? Let me know below. 👇

Writing through postpartum depression – 13 writing prompts for mental health

Writing through postpartum depression – 13 writing prompts for mental health

One of the most unexpected outcomes of experiencing postpartum depression for me was the enjoyment of writing.

What if you could overcome postpartum depression by writing your deepest, most sacred thoughts?

Think about this for a moment…

  • Are you wanting to say or doing something that you are not currently doing?
  • Are you craving more support, more time, more nourishment?
  • What if it’s your thoughts holding you back?

But hang on…

I know it will take more than writing to overcome postpartum depression.  But, I encourage you to explore these questions and see what it brings up for you.

What’s the magic formula?


Here are 13 writing prompts I’ve used over the years to overcome depression and anxiety.

So take out a pretty, girly notepad and begin writing.

#1  Write your birth story

Write it in complete detail.  All that you loved, all that you hated and all that you are thankful for.

👉Action step: Share your story online. Other momma’s need to hear what you’ve been through.

#2 Start with the end in mind

What is it that you want to do with this one and only life you have? Are you doing it? What is holding you back? Take a blank sheet of paper and draw a circle.  Write where you want to be when you are 80 years old.  Then write down the steps to get there.

👉Action step: Take one step today to fulfill your life dream. Even if it’s small.  Begin today.

#3 What’s important to you?

Take a blank sheet of paper and draw a line down the middle.  List 10 things that make you happy on the left side of the paper.  Then list 10 things you’ll say a “no thank you” to on the right side of the paper.

#4 How can you fill your cup up?

You cannot take care of everyone else if you are depleted.  How can you fill your cup up today? It doesn’t have to cost money or take a lot of time.  Here are some things I do.

  • 10-minute Youtube meditations
  • Baths with magnesium salt and essential oils
  • Write a gratitude list – who are you thankful for?
  • Get my nails done
  • Go for a hike
  • Exercise
  • Make a cup of stinging nettle tea 🍵

Fear is love waiting to exhale…

#5 What are you afraid of doing?

One of my biggest fears was closing my Pilates studio.  What would people think? Where would they go? I was more worried about my clients than I was about my own mental health.

👉Action step: So, I ask you.. what are you afraid of doing? Write it down.

#6 Complete these sentences…

  • My favorite place to sit as a child…
  • If I wasn’t this old I would…
  • If I had more time I would…
  • If I wasn’t afraid I would..
  • My favorite childhood game was…
  • If I didn’t sound crazy, I would..

 

#7 When were you happy?

Write about a time when you were very happy.  Where were you? Who were you with? What were you doing?

#8 What was the most traumatic event in your life?

  • Write about any trauma in your life.
  • Then.. write it again as though it was a good thing.  As though, you learned something from it or it made you the person you are today.

When you laugh, the world laughs with you, but when you cry, you cry alone.  – A happy pocketful of money

#9 Your thoughts

Decide right now to face everything anew.  Your thoughts, become your words and they become your actions.  What negative thoughts are you saying to yourself? Write them down.  Gently, gradually release them.

👉 Action step: Turn those thoughts into a positive word.

What comes out of your mouth, comes into your life. – You are a badass at making money.

#10 What do you really want?

If money wasn’t an issue.  If your life was different.  What would you really want? What are you craving? Write these down…

  • The perfect partner
  • The perfect health
  • Your goals in life
  • Your education
  • How much money do you want to make
  • What kind of relationships do you want

#11 What are you grateful for?

Have you ever noticed how much love you have around you? How blessed you are?

👉Action step: Write down 5 things you are grateful for today.

#12 How do you play?

Have you noticed as we get older, we stop playing? We start “adulting”? What can you do today to be more playful? To have more fun?

#13 Fall in love with yourself…

What are you holding against yourself? What do you say about your body every day?

👉Action step: Write down 20 things you love about yourself.  Don’t hold back.  List them.  Love them.  Repeat them often. 💕

The first step is the hardest.

Make a cup of tea. Light a candle and take out your notebook and start writing.

I’d love to know what you uncovered.

Leave a note below and share it with us.

xoxo

Tara

Why adaptogens are perfect for PPD

Why adaptogens are perfect for PPD

Be honest.

You’re struggling with postpartum depression.

Do you want to know how I healed depression, anxiety, and insomnia naturally?

Botanicals.

Specifically adaptogens and nervines. And.. it takes a comprehensive approach.

You’re afraid they may not work.  You’re afraid of going off your medications – or even taking medications.

I understand.

Here’s the thing….

  • If you choose not to take medications, you’ll suffer for many years with insomnia, depression, and anxiety. It may get worse.
  • If you choose to take medications, you may struggle with side effects like loss of libido, incontinence, and weight gain. {some women do need this and it’s ok!}

But hang on… before we dive in, always check with your doctor before adding any herbal supplements to your diet. And, if you need medication now – please start taking it and integrate these suggestions with your doctor.

Reality is, it takes a multi-directional approach to heal postpartum depression.

Here are the 7 parts you’ll want to explore to heal PPD:
  1. Community – connecting with others around you
  2. Gut health – are you experiencing discomfort with digestion
  3. Insomnia – are you struggling with sleep?
  4. Anger – have you noticed you’re angry and lashing out?
  5. Anxiety – do you have panic attacks?
  6. Depression – do you feel you will hurt yourself or your child? (Please call PPSI here)
  7. Stress – how are you reducing your stress every day?

Want to get started? In this post, I’ll share how adaptogens can help you.

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First, Postpartum Depression Signs

It is as if you are living outside of your world, looking in and you cannot recognize the woman you see. You may experience any or all of these:

  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Confusion
  • Despair
  • Difficulty relaxing
  • Feeling inadequate
  • Guilt
  • Hopelessness
  • Inability to cope or function with daily life
  • Insomnia
  • Irritability
  • Irrational concern for the baby’s well-being
  • Joylessness
  • Loss of interest in normal activities
  • Memory loss
  •  Poor concentration
  • Sadness
  • Thoughts of hurting oneself or the baby ·

Note: You should report all of these symptoms to your doctor, especially if you’re struggling with thoughts of hurting yourself or the baby. The vast majority of women with PPD will not harm their babies. But the fear that you might be can be petrifying and all-consuming. Professional help is available. NYC health lists.

What are adaptogens?

Adaptogens are a category of herbs that help us adapt to stress.

List of adaptogen herbs:

  • Panax Ginseng
  • Ashwagandha
  • Holy Basil
  • Astragalus
  • Licorice
  • Rhodiola

Essentially, the HPA Axis (or hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis ) is how our brain and body communicate with each other — and when we’re stressed out, it sets in motion a series of hormonal and neuroendocrine responses that control our body’s primary alert system, known as the “fight or flight” response.

When you’re in fight or flight, you may experience increased heart rate, increase blood pressure, a sudden need to pee or dilated pupils. Sounds smells, and colors may all become more vivid because all of our senses go on high alert as well.

The problem is that many of us live in a chronic state of fight or flight, especially in the postpartum years when you’re being woken up at all times of the night, or constantly having to jump up every time a baby cries.

Over time, this can lead to dysfunction. The HPA Axis loses its ability to shut off and leaves us in fight or flight mode all day long. If you’re struggling with PPD, you’re probably stuck in this mode as well.

A category of herbs called adaptogens can help regulate this stress response. In traditional medicine systems, these are also known as “tonics” and their purpose is to help restore adrenal health, ease anxieties and reduce cortisol levels.

My favorite adaptogen to use with postpartum breastfeedding moms is Ashwagandha, known as the “strength of stallions” as it strengthens the immune system, reduces cortisol levels and balances thyroid hormones. (It’s considered a Level 1 category, in the herb/risk during lactation categories and considered safe to take when you’re breastfeeding.)

If you’re not breastfeeding ginseng (Panax ginseng), St. John’s wort, Schisandra and Kava Kava may help as well.

Conclusion

When taken correctly, adaptogens and nervines can support you when you are going through anxiety and depression.  If you are struggling, please ask for help.  Medication may be the right answer for you, but it doesn’t mean forever.  Diet, community, sleep, and nutrition can help reduce your symptoms and help you feel like yourself again.

Ready to reduce your anxiety? Book a health consultation today. Book now. 


References:

What causes postpartum depression? Dr. Kelly Brogan

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How To Use Ayurveda To Reduce Anxiety

How To Use Ayurveda To Reduce Anxiety

Be honest.. you wish you could feel more rested and less agitated?

What if you could feel calm and carefree on most days?

Think about this for a moment, if you had a soothing daily routine to follow when you were stressed would you practice it?

The truth is your body craves routine.  It craves soothing practices and wants to be nourished.

Let’s dive in.

What is Dinacharya?

The Ayurvedic daily routine or Dinacharya is the most satisfying routine you can add to your life to minimize these unwanted symptoms.  Soothing and nourishing, oiling your body can provide great comfort to you and soothe your nervous system in times of stress.

But hang on….

Although this routine may seem overwhelming at first, it should take just about 20 minutes every morning (not including the exercise portion) to master.

What’s an ideal morning routine to stop anxiety?

Step #1

Wake up at the same time every day

Step #2

Scrape your tongue 10-12x to remove bacteria

  • You can buy a fancy tongue scraper or use a spoon. I often glance at my tongue to determine my health, your tongue is a reflection of your digestion.  If it has a thick coating, it may be time to cleanse your diet and add more greens.

Step #3

Brush your teeth with an Ayurvedic toothpaste with neem and licorice.

  • These herbs are bitter, astringent, antibacterial and aid digestion.  Look for toothpaste without harsh chemicals like Triclosan and DSL.

Step #4

Drink warm water with lemon.

  • Squeeze half a fresh lemon into the water; you can add 1 tsp. of fresh ground ginger to aid digestion.  Warm water cleanses and awakens the digestive tract, encouraging a healthy bowel movement daily.

Step #5

Nature calls

  • Going to the bathroom upon waking will help clear your digestive system. A healthy “motion” will have a soft brown log quality, little odor, and will be well-formed (like a banana).
  • Undigested food, foul smell, mucus, blood, excessive dryness or “pellet-like” quality, as well as “sinkage”,  indicates a digestive imbalance. Altering diet, lifestyle and using herbs will help better this.

Step #6

Wash your eyes with rose water

  • Rosewater helps soothe red eyes from too much computer work or too little sleep.

Step #7

Self-Massage (or Abhyanga) is one of our best practices for feeling ageless.

  • To soothe your nervous system, massaging your skin daily using a high-quality organic oil such as sesame, sunflower, or coconut.
  • Warm the oil in your hands, then rub down, making sure not to skip any parts. Let the oil soak in for at least 20 minutes and then shower.
  • My favorite Ayurvedic oil can be found here: https://kit.co/tarajgregorio/ayurveda

Step #8

Nasya

  • Nasya, nasal lubrication can help soothe the nasal passages, particularly in dry months. Take 1 tsp. of nasal oil on your finger, insert into your nostril and massage.
  • Bathe or shower to remove the excess oil. Look for non-toxic, all-natural soaps without chemicals; I’m loving rose soap at the moment.
  • Use this oil>https://kit.co/tarajgregorio/ayurveda

Step #9

Self-practice of meditation or yoga.

  • Begin your day with something you love! Choose an exercise routine you enjoy and stick with it daily.

Diet

Eat warm, cooked foods during the day to improve digestive fire.  Eat your most substantial meal at lunch; eating without distractions.

What is the best evening routine?

  • Go to bed at the same time every night.
  • Take a warm bath or enjoy a warm cup of milk with nutmeg,  cardamom, and a little honey.
  • Take Triphala with warm water, 1 hour before sleep. Triphala, an Ayurvedic herb can help reduce constipation and enhance your sleep.
  • Feeling constipated? Take Triphala before bed.  This is the one I love. https://kit.co/tarajgregorio/ayurveda
  • Get to bed before 10:00 pm, as your body, renews itself between 10-2:00 am.

 

What’s stopping you from trying this out? Comment below and let me know.

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