Mental Health Month – Podcast Ep. 23

Mental Health Month – Podcast Ep. 23


Welcome to the 23rd episode of the Living Healthy Podcast, presented by LA Fitness.

May marks the start of Mental Health Month, and so on today’s episode, we bring back Dr. Neel Doshi, to help us understand exactly what mental illness is, the effects of mental illness on the body, and how social media and technology play into these conditions.  

We also discuss ways to reach out for treatment and the future of mental health in general. Dr. Doshi is double board certified in Adult Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, with Kaiser Permanente of Orange County. He joined us about 6 months ago to discuss this topic, and we had yet another great conversation with him!   

For more information on ways you can get involved for Mental Health Month, please visit http://lafitnesscares.com/

How Are We Doing? 


This podcast should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.


Timecard Markers – Mental Health Month – Podcast Ep. 23

Introduction    

Begins at 0:01    

Dr. Neel Doshi, double board certified in Adult Psychiatry and Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, with Kaiser Permanente of Orange County, joins the show    

Begins at 0:39 

What is Mental Health? 

0:48 

Why is Mental Health Becoming So Mainstream?  

2:48 

How Can We Bridge the Empathy Gap? 

4:20 

What Are the Best Ways to Engage with Someone Struggling with a Mental Illness?  

5:27 

How Do Mood and Emotions Correlate with Mental Health?  

7:42 

How Much Does Your Environment Affect Your Mood?  

9:09 

Humor’s Impact on Mental Health 

10:32 

Natural Defense Mechanisms: How They Play a Part in Our Emotions  

12:28 

Social Media and Technology: How It Affects Mental Health  

13:06 

Mental Health Apps  

14:25 

Which is a Bigger Threat to Positive Mental Health: Social Media or Living a Sedentary Life? 

17:35 

Are There Certain Types of Exercise That Are Best for Improving Mental Health?  

20:26 

How Long Should You Exercise to Reap the Benefits?  

21:52 

Does Everyone with Mood Issues Need to Be in Therapy?  

24:03 

The Future of Mental Health 

25:10 

Actionable Advice 

26:36 

Outro 

28:17 


Recommended Podcast Episodes 

What is Considered Being “Mentally Healthy”?

What is Considered Being “Mentally Healthy”?

What is mental health?

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social health and well-being. It is important at every age. According to the WHO (World Health Organization), mental health is “… a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities can cope with the normal stresses of life can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.” It is important to note that the WHO stresses that mental health “is not just the absence of a mental disorder.”

Why is it important?

Mental Health is important because it affects us every day, in almost everything we do. It impacts how we function, interact with others, and how we feel about ourselves and our lives.  Furthermore, it can have a profound impact on our bodies and physical health as well.

What can be done to improve mental health?

For children and adults, learning how to identify and understand our emotions is a vital component in improving mental health. Emotions are not bad – however, we need to better teach people to identify and understand their emotions and most importantly, what to do with them.  We also must teach and develop personal coping skills so that one can process and use their emotions in a healthy and productive manner.

There are several key things we can all do to improve and maintain our mental health which includes keeping a regular schedule, especially ensuring adequate sleep. Getting regular exercise (even low intensity like walking counts) every day. Try to reduce the amount of time you sit for, as they say, “sitting is the new smoking”! Try and eat a healthy well-balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables. Connecting with others and helping others can also improve our mental health. Lastly, don’t be afraid to get professional help if you need it!

How someone can get help if they need it?

It doesn’t always feel like it, but there is help everywhere.  A few national resources that are available to anyone are the National Suicide Hotline (1-800-273-8255), Textline (741741), and online chat. The National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI.org) is a great resource not just for those who are struggling with their mental health, but also for their families.  For the LGBTQ+ population, Trevor Project has a hotline (1-866-488-7386), Textline (678678), online chat and multiple other online resources too.

Individuals should also contact their healthcare provider to learn more about the resources that they offer.  At Kaiser Permanente, our mental health resources include a wide range of services for all ages from medication management, individual therapy, group therapy, wellness phone coaching and in-person classes through our Center for Healthy Living as well as numerous online services. 

There are also people around you that are there to help, whether it’s a teacher, a coach, a religious leader or spiritual counselor, a supervisor at work or an Employee Assistance Program.

Kaiser Permanente also has a great website called FindYourWords.org which provides resources and help for those wanting to help someone else or those looking for help themselves. 

Mental Health Tip!

One of my favorite exercises to recommend to patients is gratitude. Thinking of three things you are grateful for every night before you go to bed has been shown to significantly improve your mood. It doesn’t have to be anything outrageous, you can be grateful for having a bed to sleep in, or for your bad day being over, or for the amazing thing that happened to you that day. But, remember just three! No more, no less, even if every night it’s the same three and kids can do it too. Try it for a week, see how you feel!

Ashley Zucker

MD, Chief of Psychiatry , Kaiser Permanente, San Bernardino

Responses contributed by Ashley Zucker, MD, Chief of Psychiatry at Kaiser Permanente in San Bernardino.


Recommended Reading

Are Sun-Dried Raisins Actually Healthy?

Are Sun-Dried Raisins Actually Healthy?

Question:

What are the good and bad points of sun-dried raisins?

– Anthony A.

Answer:

Raisins are typically from Thompson Seedless Grapes in California that have been sun-dried (on vine or on paper trays), shade-dried or mechanically dehydrated. Regardless of the drying method, raisins usually undergo additional processing such as rinsing, stem removal and in the case of golden raisins, the addition of sulfur dioxide (to retain color). The benefit of sun-drying to a dark brown color is that the raisins are not chemically treated.

A ¼ Cup serving of raisins provide approximately 120 calories, 2 gm fiber, 310 mg potassium, 6% DV iron, 2% DV calcium, and antioxidants known as catechins. Depending on your perspective or weight goals, the energy density of raisins could be a good or bad point. Though they are more sugar-rich (by weight) than grapes, their vitamins and minerals are more concentrated, too. This is true of all dried fruits versus fresh.

Resources:

  1. The California Raisin Industry. CalRaisins.org accessed 4/9/2019
  2. Raisin growers find their place in the sun. Ching Lee. California Country Magazine, Jan./Feb. 2010. http://www.californiabountiful.com/features/article.aspx?arID=651 accessed 4/9/2019

– Debbie J., MS, RD

This article should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Some questions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Ask our Dietitian

Have a nutrition question? Our registered dietitian is ready to help!

Email nutrition@lafitness.com or submit your question below and it may be featured in an upcoming article!

13 + 14 =


Recommended Reading - Q+A

The Art of Being Present

The Art of Being Present

There is a well-known quote that has been credited to Chinese philosopher, Lao Tzu, that says:

If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.

Whether or not that is the direct translation of the quote or a slight modernization of it, the meaning behind what is being said is worth exploring further.

The art of being present is hard for many. Why else would there be novels and movies revolving around the idea of a character who yearns to have made a different choice, or self-help books that emphasize the importance of being in the now rather than worrying about the future or consumed by the past?

But it’s hard. It’s hard to just flip the switch in your brain that also allows us the ability to feel nostalgic over memories or the ability to daydream about the future. Hard, yes. But impossible? No.

There is a difference between remembering the past versus being consumed by it.

There is a difference between a nervous excitement over the future versus a feeling of terror or panic.

Being present is possible and it really just means training yourself to be in the now. The whole “take-things-one-day-at-a-time” is great advice because no day is guaranteed to anyone.

Why worry about the past? You can’t go back and change anything. The past is gone and the only thing you have is the now. Now flip it. Why worry about the future? It’s not promised to you. All anyone has is the now.

The would-ofs, could-ofs, should-ofs, and the what-ifs of life should not take precedence over this exact moment here and now. Mental health can be improved by a change in mindset. For some, that means meditation. Allowing yourself to slow down, practice controlled breathing, and take some time to be present.

For others, it means practicing more gratitude. By taking the time to acknowledge all that you’re grateful for and all that is going right in your life, you can start developing the habit of focusing on the good rather than the bad. This can be as simple as writing down three things you are grateful for each morning or every night before bed.

And because there is no one cure-all way to be more in the present, you may find the solution that works for you is speaking with a friend, a family member, or a healthcare professional that can help find a method that best fits you.

Mental health is just as important as physical health (if not more!), which is why we are happy to bring attention to it and partner with NAMI throughout the month of May. If you’d like to learn more about Mental Health Month, please visit https://www.nami.org/mentalhealthmonth.

And remember to fully live for today!


Recommended Reading

The Different Types of Olive Oil and Their Purpose

The Different Types of Olive Oil and Their Purpose

Question:

I don’t understand the different types of olive oil. There is robust, extra virgin, virgin, refined, etc. Is one better for cooking? What about using as a dip for bread? Can olive oil be used in cooking? I know olive oil is supposed to be better for you, but I fear I’m using the wrong types of this oil in my cooking!

Answer:

Olive oil provides the same calories from fat that other oils do, though its cardiovascular health benefit is in the favorable ratio of unsaturated fats. Olive oil’s high ratio of monounsaturated fat is linked to reduced blood LDL cholesterol which is associated with a lower risk of heart disease.

The terms you mention have to do with the processing of olives into oil. There are over 50 olive varieties – thank the Greek gods that their oils are not kept separate or it would get really confusing! Here’s a rundown of what the different olives oils are and how best to use them:

  • Extra virgin olive oil is low-acid virgin oil containing less than 0.8% free oleic acid with excellent flavor (slightly fruitier) and odor (bolder aroma). Lower smoke point (temperature at which it burns) makes it suitable for stir-frying and oven cooking.
  • Cold-pressed entails minimal processing which retains beneficial antioxidants and sterols. Also, can’t be used for high heat due to its lower smoke point. Best for salad dressings and dips like hummus.
  • Virgin olive oil has reasonably good flavor and odor with no more than 2% oleic fatty acid content. Flavor is more neutral than extra virgin. Good for sauces and marinades.
  • Refined olive oil is virgin oil refined to an oleic acid content of 0.3%, flavorless and odorless. Solvents and filters are used to reduce acidity and other undesirable characteristics. Best for all-purpose cooking, including searing and deep-frying.
  • “Robust” and “light” terms relate to the flavor or hue of olive oil, not the calories or processing. Their intensity is best matched a food of similar flavor strength (e.g. robust for asparagus, light for white fish).

At present, the USDA’s National Nutrient Database doesn’t differentiate between the various types of olive oil and provides nutritional information for a singular standard reference “olive oil.”

References:

  1. Olive Oil and Olive-Pomace Oil Grades and Standards. USDA. https://www.ams.usda.gov/grades-standards/olive-oil-and-olive-pomace-oil-grades-and-standards Accessed 3/25/2019
  2. Heart-Healthy Oils: They’re Not All Created Equal. Judith Thalheimer. Today’s Dietitian, 2015 Feb. 17(2): 24.
  3. Olive Oil California Style! This Golden-Green Liquid is Fragrant, Flavorful, and Bursting with Heart Health Benefits. Sharon Palmer. Today’s Dietitian, 2011 Oct. 13(10): 30.

– Debbie J., MS, RD

This article should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Some questions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Ask our Dietitian

Have a nutrition question? Our registered dietitian is ready to help!

Email nutrition@lafitness.com or submit your question below and it may be featured in an upcoming article!

5 + 5 =


Recommended Reading - Q+A

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