Did you know celiac disease and depression are linked? Did you also know 90% of the bodies supply of serotonin (which is linked to depression) lies in your digestive tract? Serotonin is a chemical manufactured in the brain and when at “healthy” levels we feel balanced and happy. In short it regulates our mood. So if our gut is off then we are off! And since we, Celiacs, already have a decreased ability to absorb crucial vitamins and nutrients, we may not be absorbing enough of the important protein that create serotonin. We have millions of brain cells and serotonin affects most of them directly or indirectly – which will then affect our mood, appetite, sleep, memory and learning, and some social behavior. And that’s only to name a few! This is why it’s so VERY important we are aware of the nutrients are body needs and may or may not be getting, and the HUGE role this plays in our path to a happy life!!
I suffered with unexplained depression my whole life so when I found out I was Celiac and about the serious link to depression things started to make sense. Now gluten free for 3 years the depression is much more understandable and manageable. I know that my mood is directly linked to what I’m eating and the nutrients I’m getting. As you know, since you are on this site, that my passion is to scream from the mountain tops everything I’ve learned on this journey. It pains me to think that people are suffering in so many ways including living with depression and that maybe their eating can be a factor in helping them to live a happier life. The millions of people on anti-depressants in this country is astounding. Even worse the numbers of suicides. Which brings me to my next point.
For the many of who understand what I’m talking about when I speak of depression you understand how devastating it can be on your life – spirit and soul. The isolation you feel sometimes feels unbearable. Hopefully you have the support of friends or family in these times. Sometimes a hug or kind words can help you through those hard days. For me it’s words.
I was watching the Today show recently and saw an interview, followed by a YouTube clip, with a young woman addressing depression and suicide and the role it plays in her life. After her father killed himself due to depression she started a movement by creating P.S. I Love You Day in honor of him and asks everyone to wear purple to remind people they are loved. And since I deal with depression at times this touched me on deep level. Her message of how just a few kind words are more powerful than you would think to someone who is feeling low and powerful in so many ways. Words can harm but more importantly can HEAL. Dealing with depression can make you feel extremely isolated, so to hear something that connects you to another human being can truly save someones day, maybe even a life.
This blog is written with love and in purple in tribute to P.S I Love You Day, February 10th. PLEASE take a few minutes to watch this video clip:
For more information on serotonin we visited these sites: