Ep.52 Kimberley Wilson: The role of nutrition in mental health
Kimberley is a chartered psychologist and a governor of the Tavistock & Portman NHS mental health trust as well as the former chair of the British Psychological Society's training committee in counselling psychology. She is also an award-winning food producer with a degree in nutrition, and her work looks at the role food and lifestyle plays in our mental health, including disordered eating, the gut-brain axis and our emotional relationship with food. Kimberley was even a finalist on the Great British Bake Off and on top of all that Kimberley is also author of "How to build a healthy brain", which was published in March, 2020.
In this episode we cover:
- How Kimberley decided to combine her career in psychology with her interest in nutrition
- A discussion about research into how improved nutrition can reduce violence in prison populations
- The apparent disconnect between mental health and the physical body and where it comes from
- The ways stress and other mental health issues can present themselves as physical health issues
- The taboo around mental health that exists within different factions of society
- The role that better nutrition can play in keeping children in school and away from crime.
- Why is hunger a major issue for school aged children, even in the UK?
- How can dealing with childhood hunger reduce the likelihood of bad behaviour in schools
- How are charities like "Magic Breakfast" doing to improve the situation?
- What are some of the key nutrients involved in mental health?
- The important role of DHA in brain development and function
- How a mother's diet can influence a child's brain health
- What role can leafy green vegetables play in brain aging?
- A discussion about the SMILES trial, a nutrition intervention in depression
- The importance of understanding that each person's mental health issues is different and what works for one person may not work for others.
- The importance of an inclusive diet for building brain health
- The importance of plant foods as sources of fibre and polyphenols for brain health
- The incredibly important role of sleep in mental health.
- Kimberley's book "How to build a healthy brain"