Mental Health Awareness

Depression can present with:

Poor concentration, fatigue, loss of sexual desire, loss of interest or pleasure in nearly all activities and sleep disturbances.

Alcohol and recreational substances can often become an outlet for coping with mental health struggles. This can lead to a neglect in health and can increase the risk of comorbidities like reducing the protective immune responses and increasing the risk of cardiovascular disorders.

Anxiety can co-exist with depression and can affect wellbeing, personal relationships, career, productivity and as of June 10 2020 mental health prevalence has doubled.

What you can do:

  • Look after your physical health
  • Stay connected
  • Develop new routines
  • Take breaks
  • Reach out to others
  • Seek support
  • Yoga
  • Mindfulness

As a naturopath Kim often supports people to discover the underlying issues triggering anxiety and depression and can prescribe natural medicine, dietary and lifestyle suggestions to nourish the body and reduce symptoms.

The following Naturopathic herbal medicines have shown to be effective in supporting and reducing the symptoms of anxiety and depression:

Chamomile: Matricaria chamomilla

  • Significantly reduces anxiety symptoms.
  • Long term treatment for generalized anxiety disorder

Passionflower: Passiflora incarnata

  • A 2001 study for GAD found passionflower to be just as effective as Oxazepam with significantly less problems with impairment of job performance.
  • 2012 study for anxiolytics before spinal anethesia found passiflora suppressed the increase in anxiety before spinal anesthesia without changing psychomotor function, sedation and hemodynamics.

Echinacea: Echinacea angustifolia

  • A 2013 found Echincea significantly reduced anxiety over 3 days in healthy volunteers.

Kava:  Piper methysticum

  • Significant anxiolytic (anxiety reducing) and antidepressant activity

St John’s Wort: Hypericum perforatum

  • A 2016 study found St John’s Wort can improve depression symptoms and is not significantly different from anti-depressant medication for mild to moderate depression.

Some natural medicines can interact with pharmaceutical medication. During a naturopathic appointment Kim can cross check all medications and vitamins that you take to ensure that it is safe for you to take and will create the most effective treatment plan for you.

As a yoga teacher Kim also meets people who want to become more physically flexible. After attending a few classes people often comment they sleep better after attending an evening yoga class and they notice they can manage stress more effectively.

A 12 month study conducted during 2016-2017 found that mental health benefits were the most frequently reported benefit of attending yoga classes and 43% of participants reported being more confident to engage in other support services after attending yoga classes.

Everyone reacts differently to difficult situations, crisis and our ability to manage stress; however COVID-19 brought unexpected change very rapidly to our daily lives and with it the mental health impact – symptoms of depression and anxiety or even triggers to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).  Knowing how to recognise symptoms and triggers – some symptoms include: helplessness, feeling sad, angry, irritable, hopeless, anxious or afraid. You may have trouble concentrating on typical tasks, changes in appetite, body aches and pains, or difficulty sleeping or you may struggle to face routine chores.

Trying to implement some gentle self-care strategies can be helpful:

Getting enough sleep, regular physical exercise, well-balanced diet, limit alcohol, tobacco and drugs, limit your screen time and relax and recharge by setting aside some time for yourself.

Taking care of your mind is important:

Try to keep a routine, limit exposure to news/social media, stay busy with hobbies old or new, focus on the positive things, stay connected your spiritual beliefs, set priorities to reduce feelings of being overwhelmed.

Along with yoga and natural medicines, counselling and coaching can support a positive change in mindset and assist you to focus on your strengths, resilience and developing self-awareness.

To build skills in resilience, praise in the process of growth (Kamins & Dweck, 1999) must be abundant. By helping you to focus on what has worked well for you in the past, a baseline for your resilience skills can be established.  Naomi has a restorative and holistic approach to counselling and coaching – supporting you to look within in a safe environment, explore your belief systems or things that have happened in the past that may be a burden or holding you back from feeling fulfilled, build on your natural resilience and help you to set goals that represent what you want in your life and are achievable to you.

The combination of holistic supports through Kim and Naomi can support you to feel more in control and balanced in life.

Kim and Naomi are currently offering 25% off a naturopathic and counselling appointment to support you through this challenging time. 

To receive this offer, you must book a Naturopathy AND a Counselling appointment and both appointments must be pre-paid.

Call Embrace Life 3491 6533 to kick start your mental health plan today!



  1. Looking after your mental health during coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions, viewed 24th August 2020,

  1. Mental health of people in Australia in the first month of COVID-19 restrictions: a national survey, Jane RW Fisher, Thach Duc Tran, Karin Hammargerg, Jayagowri Sastry, Hau Nguyen, Heather Rowe, Sally Popplestone, Ruby Stocker, Claire Stubber and Maggie Kirkman

Med J Aust, Published online: 10 June 2020, viewed 24th August 2020

3.    Webinar: Herbal Treatment for Anxiety & Depression – Presented by David Casteleijn, viewed 24th August 2020.

4.    There is increasing interest in yoga as an intervention for mental health concerns including depression and anxiety, viewed 1st September 2020