Did you know that if you are suffering from any neurological or mental health condition that you have brain inflammation? It's the inflammation in your brain that causes most of your symptoms. Where is that inflammation coming from? What is causing it? Some of the the main sources include lifestyle factors such as the food you eat, how much exercise you get, and how you deal with stress, but an often overlooked source is your gut health. The gut-brain connection is well recognized, and our understanding of the brain has entered the field of gastroenterology. In recent years, there has been an explosion of research into the gut microbiome as it relates to brain conditions. With this new understanding of how the gut affects the brain, comes a new approach to managing your brain symptoms. Learning how to eat to nourish the gut and its microbiome is an important component of regaining your brain health. You can find out more about the gut here.
Feeding Your Brain
Neurish is a program that Tracey has developed to support neurological conditions. It is specifically designed to nourish the brain, reduce the neuro-inflammation that goes with neurological conditions and to support plasticity.
Neurish is offered both as a one-on-one private program, and also a group program. One-on-one allows for the program to be private and very personalized. The group program still allows for personalization, but offers the motivation, support and accountability that comes with doing the program with other people.
Whether you have Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, MS, ADHD, depression or any other neurological condition, this program is for you. If you are undergoing rehab for stroke or spinal cord injury, then this program helps you to maximize your therapy, by supporting the rehab process at a nutritional level.
Plasticity is defined as changes in neural (brain) pathways and synapses due to changes in the environment, which allows for changes in mental and motor function to occur. A simple definition of plasticity is that it is the brain's ability to change itself.
Supporting plasticity through diet is a unique approach that Tracey has developed to enable people to get the most out of neurological and motor therapies. By providing the right foods, you body has the tools it needs to build new pathways, to support the metabolic processes needed, and to hinder the processes that interfere with plasticity.
Here are some of the therapies and programs supported by using Tracey's Neurish approach?
- Synaptic Health Spinal Cord Injury and Neurorehabilitation (synaptichealth.ca)
- Tomatis (LLDC - tomatiscalgary.ca)
- Pathways for NeuroEducational Development (pathways-nd.com)
- Interactive Metronome (interactivemetronome.com)
- Fast Forword Program (https://www.scilearn.com)
- Stroke rehab
- Gait training
For excellent resources to different therapies utilizing plasticity read Norman Doidge’s books:
The Brain That Changes Itself
The Brain’s Way of Healing
Our Brain Story
I’m a mother of 3 amazing children. My 2 pregnancies weren’t great, so when my husband and I decided we wanted to add a third child to our family, adoption seemed like a logical choice.
Our biological daughter had been premature, and there were some medical conditions that we had to deal with during her first year of life. They were all minor, but the fact that we were able to cope with them made us think that we would be good parents for a child with a medical condition, so we chose to take that route in our adoption. As often happens, life threw an unexpected turn our way. Our adopted son’s medical condition is very manageable, but what we hadn’t anticipated was having a son with developmental delays. As time went by, it became apparent just how severe these delays were.
The process of parenting my adopted son has been my greatest challenge. It is filled with more emotional turmoil than I would ever care for any parent to have to experience, but I have come to meet many parents who are dealing with similar experiences or who have multiple children with special needs.
We searched for ways to help our son, and tried countless therapies. They all ended in frustration. There are great therapies out there, but they don't address why your child is having symptoms and problems. I had been asking "what are my son's areas of weakness, and how can I fix them?" Once I started asking "why is my son having these problems?" our lives changed.
Researching "why" led me to understand how the health of his gut was affecting his brain. The more I researched, the more I began to realize how the health of the gut didn't just affect the brain, but affected everything else in the body. We started on a GAPS diet, and started to see noticeable changes within a week. Sensory issues decreased, speech improved exponentially, behavioural issues and tantrums disappeared, and for the first time ever he was blossoming socially.
I started to enjoy my son again. Parenting him had been so hard. As his sense of humour started to emerge we could laugh together, and as time went on and his frustrations disappeared we could finally start on the journey of learning that had eluded him for so long.
Changing my own son's diet was the first approach where we saw noticeable change. Watching my son emerge as the beautiful child he is meant to be is amazing. He is no longer limited by the frustrations of being in a body that doesn't function optimally.
My son's journey has taught me so much, and now I am privileged to be able to use that knowledge to help others.
BOOKS TO LEARN MORE ABOUT AUTISM/ADHD/DEVELOPMENTAL DELAYS
These books contain more than nutritional information. Some look at biomedical treatments and have detailed information on biochemical processes underlying autism, ADHD and other disorders. If human biology is new to you, then start with the books at the top of the list. I’ve made an attempt to put the books a lay-person can understand at the beginning. If there is only one book you choose to read, then choose Gut and Psychology Syndrome.
This list is by no means exhaustive. Take the information you learn to your doctor, and don’t be afraid to ask your doctor to read material if s/he is unfamiliar with an approach you’d like to try.
Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell-McBride MD
Outsmarting Autism by Patricia S. Lemer
Breaking the Vicious Cycle by Elaine Gottschall MSc
Grain Brain by David Perlmutter MD
The Autism Revolution by Martha Herbert MD, PhD
Healing the New Childhood Disorders by Kenneth Bock MD
Healing ADHD by Daniel G. Amen MD
Autism Breakthrough by Raun K. Kaufman
Changing the Course of Autism by Brian Jepson MD
Nourishing Hope for Autism by Julie Matthews CNC