We had an amazing pleasure to interview Tamryn Burgess, RHN, a Registered Holistic Nutritionist that’s breaking down anxiety stigmas and shame through sharing her personal experience and encouraging healing and positive changes in your life. Tamryn shares her personal journey in her book “Help! Why Am I So Anxious?”, which helped people make sense of their own anxiety issues, address symptoms and underlying causes through nutritional support and guided steps towards whole body healing.
So Tamryn, could you let us in on how your anxiety journey started? When did you realize you possibly have an anxiety disorder?
Of course! Well, growing up I was always a shy, nervous child, but I always just put this down to “my personality.” When it came to class presentations or any kind of school event, I would always wonder why I experienced so much fear and stress, but really didn’t know all that much about anxiety so never really delved any deeper.
As I got into my later teens and twenties though, I started experiencing physical symptoms that would always have me running to google or heading to the doctor, only to be told there was nothing wrong with me. I had no idea that anxiety could manifest as some really weird physical symptoms such as dizziness, shortness of breath and chest pains to name just a few of the scarier ones.
When I was around 25 years old, and working as an aesthetician at a salon, my anxiety manifested as panic attacks, and this is what really prompted me to seek professional advice. Not only did I think I was losing my mind and seriously ill, I was taking too much time off work as a result and needed to make an income.
I didn’t have the best experience at the doctor, who really didn’t spend all that much time with me, however I was diagnosed with GAD (generalized anxiety disorder) and panic disorder.
Is your journey what prompted you to start your own anxiety community and to write a book?
When I was in the midst of my worst anxiety, I made a promise to myself; that if I came out on the other side, I would share my story with others, and it came true.
I didn’t receive the support from my doctor that I had assumed I would get, and googling was a slippery slope because I often ended up on sites that would have me convinced, I was seriously ill.
I spent ages doing my own research, learning everything I could about my disorder, and while it was scary and definitely not always smooth sailing, it was freeing and empowering at the same time.
I became more connected to myself, which helped me better understand what I needed to do to start healing.
As I started making lifestyle changes that truly transformed my entire life, I knew I wanted to write a book where I put all the info in one place to help others who are struggling too.
Who do you think this book will be most helpful for?
I think my book will help not only anxiety sufferers, but anyone wanting to better understand what an anxiety sufferer deals with on a daily basis.
The first half of my book is me sharing my real and raw experience with daily, chronic panic and anxiety and how it felt. I want you to be able to read this book and truly relate, to see how you are not alone.
If you are reading it to better understand a friend or loved one, then I hope that by sharing my experiences you will better be able to empathize.
The second half of my book is me sharing everything I have learned, really delving deep into the very real link between your mind and your nutrition.
What are your favorite things to help manage anxiety and do you still ever get anxiety now?
I definitely do still get bouts of anxiety when I am not taking care of myself or when I don’t give myself proper breaks.
However, I now have the tools I need to manage it so I can get back to feeling like myself again fairly quickly.
I highly recommend always being gentle with yourself and taking time for yourself, burnout is simply not worth it!
I love magnesium glycinate, it is my favorite supplement as it helps to relax my mind and tight muscles, while boosting my mood.
I also love taking CBD oil every day, it relaxes me but still allows me to stay focused on my tasks for the day.
A golden milk before bed is a must for me! Turmeric is an adaptogen which helps the body to better manage stress.
Here’s the recipe! Makes enough for one serving.
- 1 cup unsweetened organic vanilla almond milk (coconut is great too)
- 2 teaspoons organic cocoa powder (I switch all the time, but currently using the Camino brand cocoa powder, which is Fairtrade and organic).
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- Pinch of black pepper (aids absorption of turmeric)
- 2 teaspoons maple or your favorite sweetener
I like to whip this up in my blender for a few seconds to get it all properly mixed and frothy before throwing in my saucepan to heat up, but you can put it straight in your saucepan and give it a little whisk to combine.
Heat on medium for around 10 minutes till heated through and enjoy!
P.S. Turmeric also improves your sleep quality and is great for relieving insomnia!
Any last words for anyone who may be where you used to be right now?
Trust me when I say I know what it’s like to feel completely hopeless. I’d collapse into bed after a bad panic attack and cry and truly believe I would never feel good again. My symptoms were actually so severe that I hardly left my home and started suffering from depression too.
But my desire to live my life and to be happy was so strong that it pushed me forwards, even though that sometimes involved me just being able to take a shower some days without having a panic attack.
Take it one day at a time. Baby steps are key. Come and join our supportive community and you’ll see how much love and support is available for you.
I believe in you, you are so much stronger than you feel, trust me on this.
Thank you, Tamryn for sharing your story with us.
These statements are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. For any medical concern you should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician or other health care worker. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. Full Medical Disclaimer.