Supporting our Second Brain:
Ever wonder why we use the expression “I have butterflies in my tummy,” or may experience nausea or digestive upset as a result of increased stress or anxiety? This is because there is a direct physiological connection occurring in the body. Our gut and our brain are actually connected along a gut-brain axis by a nerve called the vagus nerve that allows for communication between our central nervous system and enteric nervous system, which governs digestion and gastrointestinal functioning. Due to this intimate relationship between the two systems, our gut is often referred to as our “second brain.” Understanding this connection is key when acknowledging that emotional health can impede healing in the physical body and that imbalances in the physical body can impede on emotional health. For instance, research has indicated that our gut microbiome is believed to be linked to disorders like depression.
Supporting the mind-body connection and addressing both the mental/emotional and nutritional components of your wellness can help you to enhance your understanding of your challenges, while expanding upon available tools to support optimal health and well-being!
Leigh is a Registered Social Worker and Registered Holistic Nutritionist. For several years she has worked with clients in community health and mental health care to support individuals and families experiencing increased stress due to chronic physical health, mental health and addiction issues. Since expanding her practice into holistic nutrition, she has become mindful of how the food we eat shapes physical, mental and emotional well-being, while also influencing our ability to cope with stress.
To guide clients through therapy Leigh integrates a solution-focused, emotion-focused, family systems and cognitive-behavioural (CBT) approach with nutritional counselling. Leigh believes it is important to understand the root cause of problems from a physical and mental/emotional level, and uniquely guides clients to therapeutically utilize good nutrition to enhance mental and emotional well-being and overall health. She uses a person-centred and collaborative approach to work with clients at their own pace, and address issues that clients deem to be a priority. Through drawing from both clinical counselling and nutritional interventions, Leigh has helped clients to feel more confident in their ability to manage stress, addiction, health and mental health disorders, and to feel more alert, energized, and connected to themselves.
Leigh is motivated to guide and empower clients to improve their health and overall quality of life so that they may discover how they are designed to feel. She takes great pride in building a therapeutic alliance with her clients, and works with youth over the age of 13 and adults experiencing any difficulties related, but not limited to:
Depression and Anxiety
Drug/alcohol, food/sugar or other addiction
Controlling anger and aggression
Fatigue and sleep disturbances
Eating disorders or obesity
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Coping with chronic health disorders
For insurance purposes Leigh works under the supervision of a Registered Psychologist in the province of Ontario.
A La Carte Services Initial Biopsychosocial and Dietary Assessment (1.5 hours): $175.00
Follow Up Session (1 hour): $150.00
Follow Up Session (30 minutes): $75.00
Call me at 613.668.0243 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org