September is Suicide Awareness month. The World Health Organization estimates that 800,000 people a year take their own lives.

Within this statistic is an increasing trend of suicide among our youth. Why is it that suicide is now the second leading cause of death among our 10 to 24-year-old population? And why is Canada rated third highest among the industrialized nations, for youth suicide?

Nothing exudes more joy than a smiling, giggling baby. It is their natural state. How does it happen that they can go from this state of happy bliss to the depths of despair in such a short lifetime?

Most children nowadays eat a SAD (Standard American) Diet. Interesting acronym, isn’t it? (SAD is also an acronym for Seasonal Affective Disorder and Social Anxiety Disorder). This diet of fast and processed non-foods are primarily carbohydrates and mostly sugar. Soda, candy, pop-tarts, twinkies, cookies, doughnuts, bread, french fries, sugared breakfast cereals, fast foods etc. are produced for profit with no consideration given to their effects on the adolescent brain. These products are nearly devoid of real vitamin B and omega-3 fats –the essential brain foods. And, this diet tips the gut microbiome balance toward carbohydrate-feeding parasites, yeasts, viruses and unhealthy bacteria that influence moods through the gut-brain connection.

When the brain is starved of the appropriate fuel it longs for, it becomes understandably nervous, irritable, anxious, depressed and fatigued. What can follow is severe depression, manic depression, paranoiac thinking and an overwhelming fear that something horrible is about to happen. Over time this emotional state grows into morbid fears which can lead to suicide.

Oddly, a standard medical indicator for a diagnosis of depression is suicidal thoughts. That’s a little like waiting for the damn to break before acknowledging the leak. By then, urgent intervention is required, and anti-depressants are prescribed that come with a warning. “Especially in children, [these drugs] may cause severe depression and even suicide.” A ‘Catch 22’.

What if, as an alternative to waiting for a prescription, parents were willing to feed their kids whole foods complete with whole vitamin complexes, balanced minerals, and whole fat foods to nourish their children’s brains? What if parents became aware of the relationship between the gut microbiome and their children’s brains and sought out garden grown vegetables and probiotic friendly food?

A brain friendly diet consists of whole fat milk, yogurts and cheeses from healthy grass fed, non-anti-biotic and hormone fed dairy cows: green leafy and fresh vegetables like spinach, green peas, turnip greens, asparagus, and avocado: lean beef, and healthy pork, poultry, turkey and liver: seafood and shellfish like salmon, crabs, mussels, tuna: fresh fruits like bananas, grapes and berries: fresh eggs from foraging chickens: wheat germ and rice bran: and condiments like nutritional yeast, sea salt and homegrown raw honey as sweetener.

Could this type of diet make a difference in the health and welfare of our children?

I will admit that this idyllic diet may seem difficult and time consuming for some already overwhelmed parents to implement. Their youth may be deeply addicted to sugar, drugs or perhaps even alcohol and are exhibiting behaviors that are escalating beyond negotiation.

When asked about more immediate means of relief, I am fortunately able to recommend an energy – based method of calming the nervous system and affecting brain activity such that the depression lifts and the suicidal thoughts become much less urgent and often dissipate. This method is called Access Bars and works with 32 points on the head that gently release the built-up charge from thoughts, feelings and emotions held in the brain. Those who receive a session usually feel a rather immediate sense of biological optimism as their brain calms.

The good news is that in the month of September, Access Bars practitioners locally, and worldwide are voluntarily offering free clinics and sessions for those affected by suicidal thoughts. How does it get any better than that?

Our youth are our most precious asset and the future of this planet. What could be more important than creating more joy in their lives now, and optimising their future health and welfare?

Cathy Lidster helps people reclaim their health and vitality through Energy Response Testing and nutritional support. For more articles see Contact Cathy at [email protected] or 250-819-9041. Canadian researcher Dr. Terry Hope has recently published results of her Access Bars vs. depression study at www.energypsychologyjournal.