Anita Kemp Ph.D. Blog

Ideas for a healthy body, mind and spirit.

Gut Microbes and Your Moods

Absolutely read David Perlmutter’s new book BRAIN MAKER. He is a neurologist who has worked with and studied various mental health conditions such as ADHD, Autism, Depression and Dementia from the point of view of healthy diet and keeping the microbes in the body happy. There is fascinating information here that can benefit everyone. The gut bacteria are involved in producing 80-90% of your serotonin and have their own immune system which is 70-80% of your total immune system. If you need more incentive to read this book – certain gut bacteria are related to weight loss and others to weight gain. After you find out about the critical importance of the microbiome, he offers help on how to maintain healthy bacteria. Some of this you certainly already know – like yogurt- and other ideas may be new to you – like foods rich in prebiotics. Happy reading and happy health.


October 19, 2015 Posted by | Emotional Well Being | | Leave a comment

Infection and Depression

There is a lot of new information about all the problems that chronic inflammation causes. One of the latest is that it can cause depression. Check out the article “Can Infection Give You the Blues” in Scientific American Mind May/June 2015. The general thesis is that stress can activate the immune system to be always on and this then causes inflammation. Inflammation causes the felling of depression. When you first get sick, you actually have symptoms like depression. You have low motivation, feel tired, lose your appetite, have trouble concentrating and tend to want to be by yourself. If this illness continues in the form of inflammation, then actual depression can set in. The usual psychological treatments are still good. And new treatments are being added. The Scientific American Mind article notes that diet and anti-inflammatory medications may be of help.

July 18, 2015 Posted by | Depression | Leave a comment

Mindfulness Benefits

Research continues to find benefits for mindfulness based meditation and these can not be ignored. Mindfulness is associated with positive emotion, improved resilience to stress, increased immune functioning, improved cognitive performance and overall reduction in anxiety, depression and improved longevity. How can you ignore the benefits? The amount of time required for benefit seems minimal compared to the amount of time we might spend texting/e-mailing or watching television/movies. Positive results are found for even 20 minutes a day for 10 weeks with improvement being maintained after this for months. Take a look at material available from Jon Kabat-Zinn who has one version of mindfulness called Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction and look into the research of Richard Davidson Ph.D. Invest in your health and it is fun as well.

February 4, 2015 Posted by | Emotional Well Being | , , | Leave a comment


Get ready for the holidays and jump start your weight management to be able to handle the holiday foods. This is a 4 session class that covers Tapping/Acupressure for weight loss and cravings as well as self-sabotage; Hypnosis for motivation for healthy exercise; Mindful Eating to practice enjoying smaller portions and Imagery to feel good about your body and Self.

The psychological issues are the ones that block women from maintaining weight loss and being successful. These tools provide an important part of the answer. Don’t try another fad diet. Eating healthy along with exercise is the key and these psychological tools make it much easier. RSVP at 530-222-5253 or

October 7, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Thew News Is In: We Can Eat Fat Again

You may want to check out the TIME article June 13, 2014 about eating fat. Apparently there is no significant evidence that saturated fat increases cardiovascular disease. And although saturated fat raises LDL, it also raises the HDL. So it makes no difference. You can eat butter and cheese again.  Yes, it is better to eat polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fat because they actually benefit the cardiovascular system. So keep the olive oil and salmon.

Next the impact on weight needs to be considered. The results seem to be in that a low fat, low calorie diet does not work. In fact, this makes our cells more resistant to insulin and the result is weight gain. What can you do? For weight loss, the Mediterranean diet and a low carb diet both work. But don’t skip the satisfying taste of butter, cheese and eggs. 


July 15, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Young Kids, Old Bodies

This is the title of a TIME (March 3, 2014) article about children having high blood pressure, fatty liver disease and diabetes. 32% of children ages 2-19 are overweight or obese and developing diseases that used to be only seen in adults. Due to this, they will have lowered life expectancy. This is a must read article if you have children or grandchildren in your life. Overweight children may develop fatty liver, cirrhosis of liver, sleep apnea, heart disease, kidney damage and diabetes. It is not just obese children that are risk – even overweight children are. The solution is as always health diet and exercise. Don’t let children in your life die young and disabled.

March 16, 2014 Posted by | weight management | Leave a comment

Is exercise your New Year’s Resolution?

Here we are in February already. You have had a chance to see if your new exercise routine is going to fly. If you need a motivation boost, consider this. Exercise helps improve mood, boosts self-confidence, reduces anxiety and improves sleep. Do you need more benefits? You will look great and have more energy. Long run there is great benefit for your heart and brain. It is the best way to ensure against dementia in the later years.

Exercise is as good as antidepressants for mild to moderate depression. Shorter and gentler workouts are better for anxiety. Even a 10 minute workout enhances energy and reduces tension. Gentle aerobic exercise reduces anxiety levels for up to three hours at a time.

Do you need more support? Consider hypnosis or energy psychology (tapping). Check out my web site for an online weight management class.

If you are a woman between the ages of 60-70, I am offering a support group for women who want to explore and live their life more fully and bring out their wisdom self in a joyful manner. Give me a call 530-222-5253.



February 3, 2014 Posted by | weight management | Leave a comment

Gut Bacteria and Depression

Did you know that gut bacteria (of which there are approximately 100 trillion in your gut now) produce 95% of the body’s serotonin and the reduction of this chemical is a major factor in depression? The bacteria also produce and respond to other significant mood chemicals – GABA, norepinephrine, dopamine, acetylcholine and melatonin. Not only are the bacteria related to mood of depression but also anxiety. New research is changing the gut bacteria in mice and seeing shifts in their behavior which seems to be related to anxiety and depression.  Different bacteria create different mood states.

Other research is suggesting that leaky gut is related to depression. Leaky gut is related to regular use of antibiotics and pain killers, psychological stress, inflammatory disorders and other conditions. What does all this mean? Again it is found that there is a mind/body not a separate mind and a separate body. Taking good care of yourself physically yields benefits in terms of healthy emotions.

November 24, 2013 Posted by | Depression | Leave a comment

Backpacking the Pounds Off

Here’s an idea that may appeal to some but certainly not all. I just spent 3 weeks backpacking on the Pacific Crest Trail. It is a very beautiful trail that tries to stay on the crests and gives wonderful views. It was a joy to be in nature and have no stress. And if someone wants to lose weight, you will certainly do so. It is impossible to carry or eat enough calories to make up for what you expend. Several pounds a week will just fly off the body. Of course, you have to be ready for this adventure. The really amazing thing is that there are at least 500 individuals hiking the whole trail from Mexico to Canada, over 2500 miles. And skinny people all. It takes 5 1/2 months and a strong commitment. They form a community and look out for each other. They also come from all over the world. Most are traveling solo. Most are young men and women. However, there were people in their 60’s and 70’s as well. Doing part of the trail is enough for me and maybe for you. Check out the Pacific Trail Association for more information.

July 21, 2013 Posted by | weight management | Leave a comment

More Tapping Ideas for Weight Loss

There is a new book out that has one chapter on weight loss using Emotional Freedom Techniques that were developed by Gary Craig. I have great success with clients using EFT. It is easy and changes in eating patterns as well as exercise happen quickly. The main difficulty for some people is that change happens too fast and they don’t have time to adapt. So be aware that you have to be ready for the change and really investigate this. Ask yourself “What are the downsides of losing weight?” Everybody has some. What are yours? Are you prepared for being the weight you desire? The new book is THE TAPPING SOLUTION by Nick Ortner. The nice thing about this book is that it gives tapping protocols that you can start with and then adapt for your specific situation. Some of these are on the book selling web site  Check it out and have fun with this.

June 2, 2013 Posted by | weight management | Leave a comment