HHF Counseling Centers

Photo by Matt Cashore/University of Notre Dame

INDIVIDUAL COUNSELING & SUPPORT

HHF Counseling Centers offer one-on-one counseling and support for mental health issues, substance abuse recovery, marriage and family issues, and nutrition and wellness.

TRAINING & EDUCATION

We also provide college level, Certified Pastoral Counseling Training Courses (CPC Degree). There are four courses in the initial curriculum. They are designed to benefit the professional, volunteer and those who wish to educate themselves in this area.

For more information on a center near you, please contact us below.

Nutrition In Mental Health

In this critically important talk, clinical psychologist Julia Rucklidge explores a range of scientific research, including her own, showing the significant role played by nutrition in mental health or illness. Dr. Rucklidge says, “A well-nourished body and brain is better able to withstand ongoing stress and recover from illness.”

#GoodNutrition #NatutralRecovery #MentalHealth

The Empty Garden Tomb in Jerusalem

the-empty-garden-tomb-in-jerusalem_1The photos below are taken at the official site of the Empty Garden Tomb of Jesus in Jerusalem where thousands of tourists and pilgrims visit each year.

Although we cannot be certain that this is the actual site where Jesus the Messiah was buried, people of faith can be certain of the following as recorded in the Holy Scriptures:

1. Jesus was the Passover Lamb who was slain before the foundation of the world, and who takes away the sin of all who place their trust in Him. Because of His sacrifice on our behalf, we can now, by faith, enter into the forgiveness of our sins and peace with Jehovah God, our heavenly Father.

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2. After being crucified on the cross, Jesus was buried in a tomb. A great rock was rolled over the entrance and guarded by soldiers so that no one could steal His body.

3. As He had predicted, Jesus rose from the dead on the third day. Angels miraculously appeared and rolled away the massive rock from covering the entrance. When the disciples of Jesus showed up on the first day of the week (Sunday), they found the tomb empty. Angels appeared to them and reassured them that Jesus had indeed risen from the dead and would soon meet with them in Jerusalem.

4. Afterward, Jesus appeared to them as the angels had said. He gave His disciples encouragement and instructions and miraculously ascended unto heaven to sit at the right hand of God the Father until He returns again.

May you and yours have a blessed Easter holiday.

– Dr. L. Joseph, CPC

cropped-cropped-header_1180-x-160_jpg21.jpgHEALTH, HEALING & FAITH CENTER
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SCRIPTURE READING:

“On Sunday morning, the first day of the week, some of the women went to look at the tomb. They found it empty, with the stone rolled away…Trying to touch Jesus, Mary Magdalene reached out for him. Jesus reproached her: Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet returned to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.” – John 20:1-17

 

Good Nutrition and Mental Health

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Mental illness is not always in our heads. Sometimes it is caused by poor nutrition, lack of exercise, substance abuse, tobacco smoking, and other unhealthy habits.

The field of Psychiatry is now emphasizing the importance of good nutrition for mental health. As a result of the chemical nature of our bodies and how it affects our brains/emotions/moods, we must be very careful about what we eat, exercise regularly, take vitamin supplements, and avoid all manner of harmful habits.

Scientists say that many people with mental illness commonly maintain poor diets, eat junk food, drink caffeine beverages, abuse alcohol and drugs, and smoke tobacco. This creates the biochemical perfect storm for mental illness. It creates a propensity for anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and many other forms of mental problems.

Good nutrition requires discipline.

Like anything else, if you want to get better you’ve got to work at bettering your eating habits. Start a new daily regimen being mindful of what you eat. Avoid foods that are high in sugar and fat, starchy carbohydrates, or processed with chemicals and preservatives.

Instead, eat more fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, natural juices, and limit your meat intake to only once a day. Eventually, your goal should be to transition to a complete vegetarian diet if possible. Not only will you lose weight naturally, but you will feel better.

There are those in the psychiatric field are reporting that some mentally ill patients have been cured by simply changing their diet. A healthy brain depends on the steady creation of neurotransmitters which rely on the chemical makeup of our diets.

Avoid stress as much as possible

Elevated cortisol levels (the fight-or-flight hormone), released into your bloodstream in response to fear or stress, creates all kinds of health problems in your body and brain. A steady stream of cortisol and other stress hormones can also deplete vitamins in our bodies and weaken the number of neurotransmitters in the brain. Protect these important neurotransmitters. Keep calm and be happy.

Socialize more

Humans need a connection with other humans and with nature to flourish. So many people with mental illness tend to live in isolation, and that’s not good. Force yourself to go out more and participate in normal human interactions with others.

Take vitamin supplements for mental health

Vitamin B-12

After running a routine lab test, one doctor discovered that a patient suffering from panic attacks had a vitamin B-12 deficiency. So he began a series of B12 injections. Within days, the panic attacks were over.

Vitamin B-12 supplements should be consumed daily (1000 mcg). A deficiency in vitamin B12 can result in a host of illnesses like anemia, fatigue, weakness, constipation, poor appetite, weight loss, depression, bad memory and more. This important vitamin helps to regulate the nervous system, reducing depression, stress, and anxiety. Make sure that your body is getting enough vitamin B12 by eating eggs, milk, yogurt, cheese, soy, and some varieties of nutritional yeast.

Folic Acid

Folic acid is necessary for the synthesis of our neurotransmitters, which help to regulate things like mood and sleep. A significant number of depressed patients have folate deficiencies.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a key nutrient for the nervous and immune systems and low levels have been linked to depression. For some people, simply getting a bit more vitamin D from the sun and absorbed through the skin can make a difference. Others who with real deficiencies need to take vitamin D supplements.

Omega 3 Fish Oil

Omega-3, in the form of fish oil or krill oil is also important. Our bodies cannot make these essential fatty acids, and they must be acquired from either diet or supplementation. They play a key role in brain health.

Magnesium

Take magnesium at night to help with sleep problems and muscle relaxation. Even if sleep is not an issue for you, chances are you’re still magnesium deficient (80 percent of us are). And that’s alarming because magnesium helps control hundreds of chemical reactions in the body.

Probiotics

Gut health affects everything – including our brains. Studies have found that by correcting imbalances in the relative levels of certain microorganisms in our intestinal tract, patients were able to reduce feelings of anxiety and depression. In addition, probiotics in yogurt are great for people who are under a lot of stress or eat processed food.

Holistic Therapy is better than just drugs.

Many times, psychiatric drugs only treat the symptoms of mental illness, and not the underlying problem. However, modern psychiatry is recognizing, more and more, that mental health problems need to be addressed with whole body therapy – body, soul, and spirit. And good nutrition – the body’s chemical makeup – is a vital aspect of complete and effective therapy.

– Dr. L. Joseph, CPC

#MentalHealth #GoodNutrition #HolisticTherapy

Overcoming Hopelessness

Nick Vujicic was born in Australia with a rare disorder characterized by the absence of all four limbs. Most of his childhood he struggled with depression, and after a suicide attempt, he decided to concentrate on what he did have instead on what he didn’t.

He realized that his life story could inspire many people, and it has.

“Faith and willpower,” says Nick, “is a driving force for making our big dreams come true. But if we don’t get a miracle in life, we can always be a miracle to someone else.”

#Testimonies #Faith #Hope #Inspiration #NickVujicic

Happy Walking

walking-for-healthI woke up this morning feeling a little sluggish, I have to admit. I really didn’t feel too motivated to go out for my morning walk. But I immediately realized that I was allowing my feelings to dictate what was right for me (feelings and emotions can be very deceptive). Instead, I didn’t allow my negative self-talk (“I’m too tired to exercise today”) to get the best of me, so I went and took my 30-minute walk anyway. The nice sunshine, fresh air, and brisk walk did me wonders. When I got back home I felt so much better.

As I sit here on my laptop computer writing this message, I am reminded of how important exercise is to our overall well-being and mental health. I want to encourage you to exercise too; it really does make a big difference in our moods, emotions, and healthy brain function. If you can’t go to the gym, you can it least go walking in your neighborhood or someplace else that is safe and appropriate.

Walking is therapeutic.

The gym that I go to several times a week has all kinds of machines and weights that I enjoy using. They also have Zumba, Aerobics, and other group fitness classes that are very beneficial too. However, in my case, I prefer to exercise alone and at my own pace, but of course, everybody is different. Walking in the outdoors, for me, is the best. If it happens to be raining or cold, I’ll use the gym’s treadmill machines instead.

According to the most recent scientific findings, brisk walking will help you lose weight, keep the weight off, and increase the levels of endorphins in your brain to help you think and feel better.

Endorphins act as natural sedatives, which means they have a calming effect. When you exercise, endorphins are manufactured by your body and bind themselves to neurotransmitters in your brain and nervous system to create a sense of “euphoria.” That euphoric feeling is also called a “runner’s high”, although any form of sustained exercise will produce the same effect – brisk walking, aerobics, biking, dancing, swimming, etc.

Researchers have also concluded that a simple, brisk, 30-minute walk each day is also great for losing weight and keeping it off.

How much walking should you do?

Experts agree that moderate-intensity exercise, or brisk walking, should be done for at least 30 minutes each day, 5 days a week. As you get used to this level, try to increase it to 45 minutes to an hour for greater benefits.

Other health benefits

– Elevates your self-esteem

– Decreases anxiety and depression

– Strengthens your heart

– Lowers blood pressure

– Increases lung function and oxygen to your brain

– Improves sleep

– Improves muscle tone and strength

– Prevents cognitive decline as we age

– Improves overall quality of life and increases longevity

Getting started

Take it easy if you are just beginning. Start by exercising for 20 minutes. Then you can build up to 30 minutes, and so on. Your leg muscles may get sore for the first few days, but keep going until the soreness goes away and your body adjusts to your new exercise routine. In no time, you’ll be fit as a fiddle. Remember to keep your posture straight when walking.

If you have not exercised in a while, or you have a medical condition such as diabetes or heart disease, check with your doctor before starting a walking program.

You can also team up with a spouse or friend who will encourage you. Walking should be fun and having a walking buddy – who you can talk to – makes it more enjoyable.

If you remember, drop me a line and let me know how you are progressing. Good luck, and happy walking!

– Dr. L. Joseph, CPC

Health, Healing & Faith Center

#BenefitsOfExercise #WalkingTherapy #MindTherapy #WeightLoss #MentalHealth

Thank you, God

Dear heavenly Father, Today I woke up, I am healthy. I am alive and well. I am grateful for all your blessings in my life, for I believe that every good and perfect gift comes from You. Thank you, God. Type “Amen” below, if you agree.

Thank you God

Dear Subconscious

Sara_La La LandDear Subconscious,

If I tell you I’m okay, could you please believe me and not try and tell me otherwise by giving me stomach pains, making my whole body itch or sharing those disturbing dreams with me?

I would quite like to move on and I feel like you’re holding me back. Why are you doing that? Don’t you want us to be happy? I have the tools, but we have to work together. Can you just believe in me and let me hold to reins for a while? Of course, I appreciate that you’re looking out for me, but you’re trying to wrap me in cotton wool and it’s doing more harm than good.

Oh Subconscious, if you could loosen the shackles just a little then I would not face every day with anxiety. I wouldn’t have to over think every little thing and have constant worries over things that haven’t happened yet, or most likely won’t even come to pass.

I know you bear all of the burdens and you remember so I can forget. You don’t have to forget if you don’t want to, but you CAN move forwards. It’s scary I know but look, I’m already doing it. It’s not as scary as you might think, the world isn’t all that bad. There is good and we’ve been looking in the right places and finally found it.

I know you’re trying to help, but I’m a big girl and I can handle what the world throws at me. You’ve seen what I’ve been through and I’m still here, so maybe we can let go of those things now, what do you say? I’m ready, are you? Let’s do it, let’s finally move on and not let the past dictate our future. If I believe in you, will you believe in me?

Until next time, take care.

-Sara

Sara lives in the United Kingdom. She writes about coping with anxiety and depression. Visit her website at: https://sarainlalaland.wordpress.com

Desiderata

Desiderata

Desiderata

By Max Ehrmann, Copyright 1952.

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.

Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.

But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

Be cheerful.

Strive to be happy.

Emotional Eating

Beautiful Young Woman choosing between Fruits and SweetsAre you struggling with weight loss? Chances are, you’re an emotional eater, a mental health problem that affects many people. Many times weight loss is thwarted because some people use food as a drug to help them overcome stress and unhappiness.

Comfort foods such as starches, sugars, and fats release chemical changes in our bloodstream that become opioids to our brains creating a calming and soothing effect. That’s why you may temporarily feel better after eating a large bowl of ice cream or a bag of BBQ potato chips. However, this is self-defeating if you are trying to lose excess weight. There are healthier ways to reward or soothe yourself besides food.

Get help. Emotional Eating is treatable with psychotherapy, counseling, and medications.

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#EmotionalEating #EatingDisorders #WeightLoss #Counseling