Could your mental illness have a physical cause?


I tend to focus quite a lot on the effect of the mind on the body as I have experienced many cases where a person’s illness has been triggered by an unexpressed emotion from an emotionally traumatic experience.

But can things work the other way round? Can a physical problem ever be the cause of psychological symptoms? Yes it can.

Clearly, if someone has gross brain abnormality, such as a tumour or a significant head injury, there may be ‘psychological’ symptoms such as difficulties with thinking and memory, but there is a number of more subtle physical problems related to genetics, hormone and micronutrient issues, which can also play havoc with the brain, contributing to illnesses such as anxiety, depression, and even schizophrenia, autistic spectrum disorder and dementia.

These include imbalances of certain micronutrient and minerals, such as copper, zinc, folate, vitamin B6, magnesium and glucose, the presence in the system of certain toxic metals, sensitivities to certain food constituents, such as gluten,  as well as abnormalities of certain essential processes in the body, such as methylation and oxidative stress.

Fortunately, there are blood or urine tests available to help detect most of these abnormalities, and I believe all patients with significant and difficult to treat mental illnesses should probably have these done. I am able to carry out such tests at the clinic and am starting to do so. If you are interested or wish to know more, please get in touch.