Food and the brain

Well what, in heavens name, do these two have in common, you may well ask. Well they don’t generally but they do apply to me. So this time I’m going to fill you in on the brain part of me!

Deep breaths

Now this is generally something we shove under the carpet and let it stew (messy!) Well for me mental health is a big issue and bouts of depression are something I have lived with for many years. Depression is something we are not allowed to talk about. Why is this? As we all know some people never stop talking about their aches and pains so why should depression be any different?

The extraordinary irony is that talking about mental health issues actually helps sufferers to come to terms with it, enormously. The encouraging point for me is that celebs are now coming to the fore with their stories of depression and anxiety issues. It matters not to me but, I so, so hope it will encourage others less well known to do the same and prevent the final and hideous result of not talking.

So thanks Cara Delevigne, thanks Lady Gaga, thanks Brad Pitt, thanks Gwyneth Paltrow, thanks Alastair Campbell, thanks Stephen Fry, thanks Robbie Williams and the list goes on…….Sadly not everyone gets through it but I can’t tell you how important talking is.

I have experienced a very bad period recently. My family have been enormously helpful during very dark times.

I have been impressed with the support given by Worcestershire Mental Health Service. There is always someone you can rely on and talk to. Never be ashamed of your condition, anymore than you would be about a physical condition.

Most importantly, opening up to someone helps you move on and deal with the issues yourself. For example, and as I’m doing now, writing about situations is hugely helpful for me. Get yourself a plan, find something to do you really enjoy. I’m fortunate enough now, to have odd thoughts about moving on. It’s not a resolution but I have decided to cook! It’s something I love and enjoy.

Whilst I have said how important it is to find someone to talk to, I also think, and if you can, try and move on in your own mind, knowing that there is always someone to talk to.

Even I might be able to help. Happy to cook something up with you!




10 thoughts on “Food and the brain

  1. Well done Barry for having the courage to be so open about your illness! You are right about the benefits of speaking out about mental health problems. There is nothing shameful about ill health of any kind, and talking is always good and often therapeutic. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the rest of the family especially at the moment. We hope you’ll soon get the help you need and in the meantime enjoy your cooking…you are such a talented chef and organiser of fantastic foodie events and long may you continue to entertain others.

    1. Thank you Pam your comments and your thoughts are much appreciated. Ezra was an enormous help in giving me some cheer over a difficult weekend.
      Love to you both

  2. A very honest and moving piece Barry – I’m full of support and admiration for your bravery in standing up and speaking up about mental health. Sending love, best wishes and support. Sarah x

  3. Thank you so much for writing this. Especially as a man, men find it even more difficult to express a mental illness as they fear it’s a sign of weakness. I never understand why people don’t talk more about it. Best wishes in your day to day fight with a mental health issue. For every day that you may struggle is a day where all is good 🙂

  4. Well done , I feel guilty that friends you feel you know and would love to give support to may be hiding their true feelings . This a subject that once discussed openly folks will feel confident to be open about their own problems

  5. Well done on opening up. It is very brave of you and I am sure that the support of Simone and your children help a great deal. The professional help should not be underestimated and when you are ready to move on, you will. One thing about your cooking is that you are very good at it!

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