Monthly Archives: March 2016

My Mood Miracle of (Magnesium) Glycine

Stress much?

Since I have been an avid proponent of magnesium in the past, I want to now enhance my position on magnesium, which in my attempted study of the literature on neurotransmitters brought to my attention the fact that I noticed a big effect* on my mood with the use of magnesium glycinate. Continue reading


Here is an audio file about chocolate. Essentially a 9-minute listen on the topic of what chocolate does for mood. It’s 18 minutes total but halfway he digresses to other topics:

Here are my notes:

Chocolate may have a temporary feel-good effect for depressed people, but long term effects are negative. Plus, the effects also depend on your personality as such:  If you are a Craver type, anticipation stimulates your dopamine.

In contrast, emotional eaters are looking for an immediate fix; they eat chocolate looking for an opiod effect (because of pre-existing low mood), but the chocolate doesn’t work very well. It can worsen the earlier mood or state.

Exercise is measured to improve mood and the effects last longer. (If I start to eat chocolate again, I may only put it in my mouth as I’m beginning some exercise LOL!)

Darker the chocolate the better, health-wise. Adding cayenne is healthier.

To increase enjoyment, plan ahead then eat it SLOWLY, and use anticipation of it to your advantage (like the Craver type).

If you are craving chocolate, examine your mood state and determine if you have depression. Look up anti-depressants on because he gives you alternatives that are better than pharma drugs. [Note: see also]

What I have learned over the past month+ of being chocolate-free by choice, is that my plan is just that: to learn about the neurotransmitters.  I went to a Paleo style diet with no added sugars – I do still have starches and fruits and stevia. But with this diet and no chocolate, my cravings for chocolate have drastically subsided.  What remains is still my underlying emotional frustrations and tiredness, which I used to “treat” with dark chocolate every day.  I now say, I will only eat chocolate when I know I’m not doing it to try to treat my mood or energy symptoms.  Even then, I will need to put a cap on it and allow it only once a week.  In the meantime, I would not have classified myself as “depressed,” but depression does come in different forms, not just the crawl-under-the-covers variety. To me, it doesn’t matter what you call it, I am looking to improve my nutritional status so that all my hormones, including neurotransmitters, will be functioning as well as possible.

To that end, I discovered tonight and have done too much reading late into the night (again). I highly recommend his website as a fount of awesome health information. His articles on digestive enzymes and the digestive process are like gold in our hands.

RECIPE: Simplest iPot Stew

Using my Instant Pot (iPot) yesterday, had my own criteria for a super simple meat dish. This was surprisingly super yummy and easy. I’ll be making again soon.

Before you get going, plan your base vegetable (traditionally mashed or baked potatoes). I baked spaghetti squash and served the stew on top. You could use steamed cauliflower.

Use the iPot’s saute setting, brown chopped white onions or shallots in butter til brown but not burned. Time saver: frozen chopped onions.

Add a block of FROZEN stew meat, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp. each onion powder and garlic powder and 1 CUP WATER. Use the stew setting for 35 minutes of high pressure cooking.

Remove the lid (Work fast!) and add carrot chunks and celery pieces (and potato?) and SLOW COOK for 2 hours. During this time, bake your spaghetti squash or cook your choice of vegetable base.

Thicken the gravy using a slurry of potato starch and water, stirring on the Saute setting just until thickened.

Add pepper if you know you are not sensitized to it.

Easiest Product for stress or travel

Pure Encapsulations is a great brand for the amino acids and mood formula needs. This product PureClear is pretty smart, including the rice protein and stevia, for any day when you are in a rush and just cannot give the attention to several different bottles of supplements. This has the basic vitamins, minerals, including B complex plus free-form amino acids (for Mood Cure aficionados).

PureClear Web page

Pure Clear PDF

If you wanted to take ONE product on vacation/travel, this might be it. You could take it in your hotel room when you wake up to get your protein going and before you have a chance to visit the hotel breakfast bar. The protein is only 15g, so you have some leeway to also eat some food along with it.

I don’t know if this formula is going to proportionately be where I want to end up for my Master Supplement Plan (it might take me a year to get to my final maintenance plan), but I would certainly trust this for super busy days and travel, it would be MUCH better than nothing!!

Note the Vit E is from purified soybean oil.

Yep, it’s got tryptophan in it. I will be looking to switch from 5-htp to tryptophan when I can, next bottle and see if the effects work for me. Results will be skewed due to me taking the 5-htp now (since serotonin will build up over time, hopefully with either nutrient.) So, do what you will, but consider that if you are taking 5-htp, taking extra tryptophan may not be a big deal as you could have just as easily eaten a huge grass fed steak. My point: I wouldn’t worry too much about adding this onto my daily intake if I am traveling or having a stressful day.

Comments welcomed below! Do you have a rushed-morning fall-back plan, or things you plan to take on your next trip?

RECIPE: Creamy Broccoli Soup. No cream.

Rachel’s Simplest blender soup.

Anti cancer. Prevents gastric mucosal damage.

Brown shallots in butter. Put in chopped broccoli. Add enough water so some broccoli is poking out top of water. Put a lid on and boil just til broccoli is soft but not turning sickly.

Blend this in blender. Careful! Put a towel over the lid first.

Blend till it looks creamy and smooth. Salt to taste.

I enjoy this in a big mug.