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Depression, Anxiety, Bi-polar??!

hey all,

i am very new to the raw food lifestyle & am already experiencing, what i believe, is depression, anxiety, bi-polar, moodiness, irritability … some days i have a big appetite other days i don’t have an appetite.

i’m also experiencing bloating almost after every meal … what’s going on?! ... has anyone had similar experiences?

could these symptoms mean a sign of detox?

i’ve done the lemonade cleanse last year so i don’t believe that i am that toxic … or maybe i am.

anyone out there … any thoughts/ideas/opinions??

thanks :))


  • zinfandelzinfandel Raw Newbie

    If you haven’t already you will probably need to drastically cut down on fats. And up your fruits. Especially berries. Eat lots of bananas. Melons are great for breakfast but you have to eat them alone. Cut out fats for a couple of days and see what happens. You are probably detoxing. It took me about 3 weeks. It takes some people longer. The difference is significant afterwards though, and entirely worth the effort.

  • dzdz

    okay … fats as in … nuts?!

    cheers for the reply! :))

  • nuts and avocados and legumes.. seeds, olives, beans, grains.. can all be high in fats. but it sounds like detox, d&z.. I didn’t have any symptoms of detox the 2 times I tried the lemonade “cleanse”. My teeth just got kinda.. fuzzy… 3 weeks is what you can expect. Up your fruit and water in take and it should help greatly!

  • dzdz

    that makes sense, loorin :))

    i’ve been eating a ton of avos and seeds and oils and nuts!! my body weight is on the slim side & i don’t want to end up losing weight … i’m 5’8, 124 pounds.

    i haven’t been drinking that much water & my fruit intake has not been that great … so basically i have to reverse what i’ve been doing

    thanks!! :))

  • It’s tricky to find the right balance for you right off the bat, every body is different.. you might lose some weight over the first little bit but that’s not to say there aren’t lots of ways to put it on again later! Good luck! Let us know how your transition goes! I find I am still trying to make it to 100% raw.. I am currently battling with a bunch of health issues and am using some cooked foods as a crutch.. So far today has been a 100% day and I am hoping to keep it that way for the rest of the week.. Just take it a day at a time.. It’s a HUGE life change! But I know so worth it.

  • How raw are you (percentage)?

    What are you eating besides nuts and avocado? I don’t think there is any reason to cut down on fats. They are necessary and it’s really, really hard to eat too much raw fat (if your body doesn’t need all of it it will burn off the excess as body heat). Fats are good.

    But, please give an estimate of how raw you are, and for how long, what else you eat. The only time I got bloated and gassy was when I was eating too much sprouted stuff.

  • sweetpeasweetpea Raw Newbie

    In my experience, foods that are taxing on the liver may cause anxiety, depression etc. such as nuts/seeds, chocolate

    If you’re low on fat, you can equally experience the same symptoms, as good fats like the omegas are good for mood.

    You could try basing your diet around carbs, proteins and some supplemental good fats such as soaked nuts/seeds etc.

    Blue green alage has been noted as a mood enhancer.


  • 1sweetpea1sweetpea Raw Newbie

    Bi-polar and depression are pretty extreme terms to throw around to describe mood swings caused by internal upheaval. I frequently feel either not hungry or else ravenous, nearly giddy at times or cranky and a bit down in the dumps. Bipolar Disorder or Depression it is not. Your body is trying to figure out what it needs and in what quantities and combinations. My body is detoxing and producing all kinds of odd feelings. At times, I feel like doing jumping jacks, but other times, the thought of exercise makes me want to curl up in a fetal position and sleep. Dehydration can certainly produce extreme feelings. Try upping your water and fruit and vegetable intake, as suggested above, but also enjoy a small amount of nuts, seeds and avos. Try to eat them on their own, with nothing else in your stomach, which may cut down on the bloating, but also give soaking, then drying or sprouting them a try. My body has better handled the seed cheese that I made that used sunflower seeds that had been soaked for several hours, than the one I made with unsoaked seeds. They also ground to a finer consistency, which was a nice perk.

  • eh, whatever it may be, I wouldn’t concentrate on all the disorder-lee labelings, Instead, since you are aware of the sensations that you’re experiencing why not research on certain foods or herbs (gotu kola) that help those swingful moods that seem to be going on. Your body does sound like its detoxing, even so, go and a hike, take a relaxing breath outside and do some yoga, maybe grab some crayons and doodle, put the complex raw cheese and other concentrated recipes aside for a bit, and why not bite into a fresh sweet bell pepper.

  • dzdz

    guys … you’re awesome!!! maybe it’s just in my head that i’m thinking that i’m all depressed and yada, yada.

    i went to a raw food restaurant today with my daughter and hubby and i feel great!! :))

    meloe … love your attitude … especially the crayons and doodling part!! :))

    thank you all :))

    xoxo Z

  • beanbean Raw Newbie

    that’s great that you’re feeling better, d&z. Mind state can be a tricky thing- I think I’ll start another post for this, but has anyone here actually been diagnosed with depression, or bipolar disorder?

  • dzdz

    well, that’s the thing, bean … i was diagnosed with a mild depression from an acupuncture dr … i don’t know … maybe it’s in my mind or maybe not … i’m trying to figure things out for myself and hence improve on my diet for a better state of mind … any food that improves mood .. ? thanks!

  • Branwyn32Branwyn32 Raw Newbie

    I have never been officially diagnosed cause I can’t afford care, but I have been pretty certain for many years that I have mild forms of clinical depression and social anxiety disorder. I have mostly learned to manage them on my own.

    I would recommend trying maca though. A tablespoon a day in my smoothies seemed to help significantly along with increasing my energy and alertness without making me feel weird in any way. St. John’s Wort is also a great herb for depression, and Kava Kava for anxiety. The kava works very well, but also tends to space me out a bit.

  • beanbean Raw Newbie

    I think any sort of thing like that is technically in our minds, but I don’t think that makes it any less serious- if anything, I would think it’s worse because it can’t really be “cured”... I’m not sure, though- it’s strange, I’ve never officially been diagnosed, but depression and anxiety run in my family and I too am fairly certain that I’m affected by it. I’ve thought of going to a doctor for it, but I have an intense fear of having to take any of the medication. I’d much prefer to manage myself, however I can. d&z, I’m not sure about any food myself- that tends to be what sets me off sometimes, but my approach to food tends to have an impact on it. “Cleaner” foods, like just fruit, veggies, and things you can eat without putting it in a recipe tend to make me feel best. Simple makes me feel happier and lighter than if I make a tricky recipe, I’m not sure why though. Branwyn32, I’ve heard a lot about maca… actually, I’ve heard it’s good for women to take because it promotes… something to do with female sexuality, I think it was. Do you know anything about that?

  • Branwyn32Branwyn32 Raw Newbie

    bean yes, maca increases libido in any gender. I have found this to be ABSOLUTELY TRUE. It seems to take about a week or 2 of daily use to kick in, but after that I seemed to want to jump anything that moved! (I have a naturally higher sex drive than most women to start with though, so YMMV, but I did notice a marked increase).

    FYI, clinical depression (not just a bad bout of sadness) is indeed physiological. It’s characterized by the brain’s inability to produce normal levels of the chemical serotonin, which regulates mood and feelings of well-being. Some chemical compounds in certain foods, like chocolate (I dunno if cacao applies, I think it does) can actually prompt the brain to release serotonin, which is why most people associate a feeling of happiness to eating chocolate.

  • Branwyn, what’s your address? I’m hopping on a plane….

    Just kidding!

    Trying to get a chuckle out of d&z…laughter is the best medicine and all that…

  • Branwyn32Branwyn32 Raw Newbie

    LOL! If only my fiance didn’t live across the pond…he’d have been a very happy man. Or exhausted, maybe. LOL

  • schmoopeeschmoopee Raw Newbie

    d&z When you are new to raw food it is completely normal to have mood swings. In my case I have binge eating disorders that motivated my switch to raw foods. When you no longer have the trigger foods to soothe, smother, or evoke your emotions you are left only with the “raw” feelings to deal with. This can be difficult and many times is the reason people stop being raw, although they might not even know it.

    I would suggest keeping a journal. Track the food you eat and your mood each day. This will help you know what works and what doesn’t. Some people react too strongly to high sugar fruits (i.e. bananas) and have to stay away from them.

    keep it simple and go easy on yourself!

  • dzdz

    thanks again guys :))

    i’m more lost than ever … i don’t know what to do anymore … do i keep being raw, do i follow the ayurvedic diet, the blood type diet … i can’t even hear what my body is telling me anymore.

    when i did eat regular food (i’ve always been healthy) i didn’t think about all this stuff and it was just a tad easier.

    i’ve heard about maca … my husband told me about it and i can agree that it improves my mood or maybe it’s because i know about it that i think this way.

    i’m craving a ton of cooked food … not something fancy – just the simple things … rice, bread, etc.

    at the end of this day i chose this lifestyle for a clear, healthier mind … yet i’m more confused than ever :)))

  • Ayurvedic and blood type (and Atkins, and South Beach, and…) are just fads…raw foods is what every animal on the planet eats and what we ate for millions of years until very, very recently.

    Your body is going to have all kinds of cravings because it’s been addicted to cooked foods and processed junk and it’s kinda mixed up, but that will go away. Just eat and enjoy as much raw food as possible, switch from roasted nuts to raw nuts, table salt to sea salt, stop eating canned and packaged foods, don’t be afraid of fat – enjoy avocado with your salads. Don’t worry, you won’t gain weight. You’ll probably lose weight.

    Keep it simple like schmoopee (nice name!) said….

    Humans are not good at interpreting food cravings, so be careful there.

  • dzdz

    i am 100% raw-vegan … except for honey :)) raw honey is deelish! today is my … okay, don’t make fun of me, okay … 7th day on raw food :)) before that i did 8 days and i couldn’t handle it and ate a little rice with some other cooked food :(( i’m also nursing my 5 month old, beautiful daughter :))

    my goal isn’t to lose weight, i’m already slim … so keeping my weight would be best!

    yeah, schmoopee did say it best! :))

    you know, after all the support i received from you guys i feel SO MUCH better! thank you raw people :)) i’m going to toughen up and stick with it :))

  • schmoopeeschmoopee Raw Newbie

    Cool. If you continue to have problems please give us more information about what exactly you’re eating so we can better help you figure out what’s happening.

    Some people simply can not combine fruits and fats(nuts), it causes slower digestion…bloating. Bloating could also be a sign of a food allergy. Bloating, irritability + craving bread can be a sign of candida (you can google for a self-test).

    Don’t worry too much about being 100% to start. Many people transition into raw. Don’t feel like its all or nothing or 100% of one certain program. Last week I was mostly 100% raw except for a thai lunch with friends where i ordered steamed veggies and brown rice without hesitation. It is far more important to me to have fun and laugh and relax with my friends then to not go out because there’s nothing on the menu for me.

    Some of the biggest personalities in the raw food movement will admit to not being consistently 100% raw. I just saw an interview with Cherie Soria the founder of the Living Light Institute (where all the raw food chefs go to get certified) and she said she often is not 100% raw, in fact when she travels sometimes she’s only 50% raw and she was perfectly okay with that.

    Do what makes you feel good, strong, energized and calm, because in the end the most detrimental thing of all is stress.

    OH, geez…sorry this is so long. I love bread too, I sprout quinoa and it satisfies the craving for grain, only takes a day.

  • dzdz

    i’m combining everything just because i’m so hungry all the time … i’m eating raw bread, burgers, chocolate … all the recipes from this site :))

    i can’t believe it that some of the biggest personalities are not raw 100% consistently … i needed to hear that … & for you to admit that you have rice w/steamed veggies … that’s just awesome! :))

    i know it’s not all or nothing but i am that way … either i’m raw or i’m not … i’m working on finding a balance that suits me best & am having such a hard time. hanging out with friends def. makes me a tad stressed just because often times i can’t eat anything …

    i love what you say “Do what makes you feel good, strong, energized and calm, because in the end the most detrimental thing of all is stress.” SO TRUE!!

    i just don’t want to give up because i know how good raw food is for us however i find that often times i’m stressing out over it.

    my hubby is sprouting quinoa & if it wasn’t for him i’d be off the raw food by now … he’s the one that makes all the food :))) i’m just not as motivated … i’m working on it :))

  • vegan2rawvegan2raw Raw Newbie

    Hi d&z I too am a nursing mamma actually I am tandem nursing my 3 year old 2-4 times a day and my 20 month old anytime she wants. I too have been experiencing extreme moodiness and anxiety and have yelled at my kiddos which is not the norm in our house. So I added a b-12 supp and am trying some of the advice others gave you. I have been vegan for 2 years and veg before so I dont think its detoxing but who knows I am glad you posted this thank you cuz I needed the same advice.

    Peace Light and Love

  • dzdz

    hey raw mama!! :))

    it’s awesome that you posted :))

    do you think that maybe our hormones are a little crazy because we are nursing & that’s why we are experiencing all these feelings … ?

    i’m not taking any supp at the moment, i’m trying to gain all the vitamins from the food.

    i am not sure if bee pollen is considered vegan-raw but i know it’s excellent for the B group vitamins :))

    today i ate really simple food with simple combinations & feel really well! :)) BUT for dinner i had two types of raw bread & a burger (raw) and this spinach, tomato salad and i bloated … goes to show that keeping it simple is the best way … at least for me! :))

    peace light & love :))

  • vegan2rawvegan2raw Raw Newbie

    I had not thought of that (the hormone thing) but maybe your right, I guess I should add more maca thats a hormone balancer. I was excited to see your post not too often I find another raw nursing mamma! I was taking New Chapter organic perfect prenatel vitamins for my pregnancy and beyond till a couple months ago when I went off soy (they have cultured soy in them) honestly I felt better on them but like you am trying to achieve my vitamins thru food. i will try some bee pollen I heard it is an allergen so I had not tried it ( our baby is allergic to corn, peanuts, cashews, eggs, and dairy so I am always a little hesistant adding new things) She has not shown any signs of honey allergies though so it should be ok. Our kids were why we switched from vegetarian to vegan and then we thought why not go the distance and see what all the hype is about with raw foods. We have seen big diff since our switch in June 08. Another thing that might help you is I was feeling bloated a lot till I switched from nuts to seeds, I still have nuts a couple times a week but not daily and make pumpkin, hemp, sunflower cheeses and burgers instead of with nuts. Now even when I have nuts I dont get bloaty so it just does not work daily for me although my hubby works hard and he feels he needs nuts daily. I do best with simple stuff too although there are times at night when I want the densness (is that a word?) of burgers and pates. Have you heard of the renegade health show I think it is renegade health.com but they have good info and cooking vid(uncooking oops) and such he was saying a while ago that usually we need an increase in calories just more simple meals. I dont know about you but sometimes I am so busy with the kiddos I forget to eat enough for me so I have been trying to keep big bowls of veggie vinagarett or coleslaw in the fridge. Well I better end this it is turning into a short story :))

    Peace Moonlight and Love

    Good luck on your raw journey (and on your motherhood journey)

  • dzdz


    Thank you for the advice & for the web site. I’ve stumbled across it before, but it was nice to review it again.

    I know what you mean about the night cravings, I have them as well :) I made a bunch of dips with crackers and breads and that way I always have something to eat, but just like you I can forget to eat during the day.

    These days, or it seems ever since I posted this topic, I feel so much better, knock on wood. I am starting to figure out this lifestyle and I am starting to enjoy it. It’s only when I haven’t ate anything in a while and hunger hits that I just want to eat everything in sight :) I, also, started to make big bowls of salad so that I have them ready during the day.

    If you experience anything let me know and I will do the same! Good luck to you on your raw journey and on your motherhood, too :)

    Thank you for all your advice everyone, it is much appreciated and I feel a lot better! Yay :)

    Live Love Laugh :)

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