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Episode #15: Making Sense of Depression & Anxiety with author Peter Symons

I was very lucky to get to spend some time talking with Peter Symons, author of the book "Brain-Fuel Depletion: making sense of anxiety and depression".

Peter and his co-author, Dr Clyde Jumeaux, have developed the brain-fuel depletion (BFD) model to help people understand what is going on at a physiological level when they've been diagnosed with anxiety or depression - or they're simply experiencing one or more of the common symptoms that could lead to this kind of diagnosis.

The BFD model gives people knowledge and along with that, hope, that they do not need to live with debilitating symptoms and the understanding of what steps to take to recover.

We discuss:

  • Peter's own experience with a diagnosis of depression and what led to that
  • what exactly the BFD model is
  • how to keep our brain fuel at optimal levels
  • why medication is sometimes required to help people recover to a level where they can deal with the underlying issues that caused their illness in the first place
  • the multiple symptoms of BFD
  • how to talk to your doctor about BFD
  • what's required to get a good night's sleep, and why you need to work at getting better at sleeping if this is a long term problem for you
  • tips for preparing for and performing well in academic exams

To find out more about BFD and Peter's work: https://www.brainfueldepletion.org

For the interview in video format, watch it on my YouTube channel

About Peter:

Peter Symons is a veterinarian, author, speaker and winner of Momentum Womens’ Forum’s 2008 Most Inspiring Man for speaking out about Brain-Fuel Depletion; his model that, finally, makes sense of ‘depression’.

I’ve been described, by my neurosurgeon, as like a cat. I’ve survived three brain haemorrhages (the world record), brain surgery twice, a stroke and three cardiac arrests.

In 2001 I suffered my 3rd brain haemorrhage and 2nd brain surgery. That was easy.

A far bigger challenge soon presented itself. Despite great support at all levels, I became dangerously suicidal instead of being ecstatic.  Eventually, after six horrendous months, I reluctantly sought help. I was diagnosed with depression, despite not feeling depressed.  Great care plus drugs quickly got me back on track.

After that puzzling, traumatic period I decided that understanding depression, could, and should, be much easier. With Dr Clyde Jumeaux, I created the Brain-Fuel Depletion model. It is a simple, but unique, cause-and-effect model that explains how the myriad symptoms - including anxiety, depression and suicidality - develop.  I talk frankly about the suffering it causes; which gives others ‘permission’ to talk about, and admit to, their own experiences. It eliminates stigma and confusion from its many victims.

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