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Food and mood swings of spring

BY: Andrea Nakayama

DATE: 2018-05-07

This week I’ve been pondering the fact that both the words hunger and anger end in gerrrrr.

Because that’s what I’ve been feeling lately…a whole lot of gerrrr.

Gerrrr in my belly and gerrrr in my furrowed brow.
Are you feeling it too?







Or that constant turning over of things in your mind, distracting you from where you want to be (which may be sleeping.)

Oh, and hunger too. Did I say hunger?!
Hunger (with a capital ‘H’).

It should come as no surprise that these types of feelings arise.

Spring is here!
Spring is the season of the liver.

And hold off from blowing your top because I’m going to share the connection between the two… the connection between your liver and your gerrrrrrr.

But first, I’m thrilled to announce that there’s a solution in sight!
It’s the celebrated FxNA Spring Cleanse: truly food ways to nurture your liver health.

Registration for the FxNA Spring Cleanse is now open and we’ll be leaning into this liver-loving journey starting on May 14th. You can claim an early bird discount if you register by this Thursday night(you and your liver will be sure to love that!)

Truth be told, as I prepare to lead the Spring Cleansers through this liver-focused cleanse, I think I may be feeling their preparatory angst and anger as well as my own seasonal food and mood swings.

Biologically, the liver is the body’s gatekeeper.

It detoxifies all your blood, helping to breakdown and ideally eliminate what isn’t serving you inside. And your liver certainly has a tough job.

You’re literally assaulted by myriad toxins every single day. And your liver is the unsung hero coming to your rescue.

There are two categories of toxins that take their timely toll:

  • exogenous toxins &

  • endogenous toxins

Exogenous toxins are those that enter from the outside environment—through your skin, your respiratory tract and your urogenital tract. Endogenous toxins are produced as a result of imbalances in your own metabolism (these come from inside you.)

Either can have physical, emotional or psychological ramifications.

In Chinese Five Elements theory, where each of the organs is associated with an emotion, the liver is not just about detoxifying blood but also discharging stress and anger. It makes sense.

If any of these toxins (chemical or emotional) build up inside, they’ll affect all your body’s functions.
So where does hunger come in?
That’s exactly what I’ve been wondering.

We can look at the relationship between hunger and anger in a number of ways…
Is blood sugar affecting your hunger and anger?

Certainly, if you get too hungry and your blood sugar drops too low, you’re bound to feel less benevolent. Studies show that hungry judges give less favorable rulings. Well…they’re not alone.
Are you hungry for something other than food?

If your belly is full and you still feel a grumble, it’s always good to take a look at what other plate might be empty. Are you hungry for change? Love? Sex? Connection? Wisdom? Fulfillment?

Chances are these deficits may leave you feeling both hungry and angry.
Could there be something happening inside, driving the hunger dial up?

Biologically, the liver itself—that way—station of all things potentially hostile—is a source of feedback for hunger. If the liver starts to release its stored sugar (called glycogen) to meet the body’s energy requirements, it will signal the brain to initiate hunger pangs to address the tapped energy through food.

Yet what I’ve been realizing this week is that sometimes it’s not a matter of analyzing. Instead it’s a matter of being.

Being with the hunger.

The food writer Molly O’Neill says it best:
“When spring is in the air, appetite, like other basic human urges, responds.”

And ultimately, that’s my very favorite part of the FxNA seasonal cleanses.

Each seasonal cleanse provides an opportunity to indulge in the foods, organs, and emotions of the season.
It’s an immersion in nourishment and relief!

I may go in feeling hungry and angry. Those sensations may even be more stirred up as I start to bring my attention to my liver. Yet I know I’ll leave feeling sated and supported.

I know I’ve given my body the blessing of being in sync with the season.

So let’s do this together!

Register today for the Spring Cleanse (and claim that prized early bird discount) so can you give your liver the tender, loving care it deserves.

(And even though you might get angry at me as you start  to cleanse, I promise to get my gerrrrrrs in check before we begin on May 14th!)

Andrea Nakayama

By: Andrea Nakayama, FxNA Founder & Functional Medicine Nutritionist

Functional Nutrition Alliance provides the comprehensive online Functional Nutrition training in the Science & Art of the Functional Nutrition practice. Learn to address the roots of your clients’ suffering with client education, diet & lifestyle modifications.


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