Dr. Sheila Forman
health, fitness, and beauty
Dr. Sheila Forman, a former practicing attorney, has PhD in psychology, and is a one of the first qualified Mindfulness Based Eating Awareness Training (MB EAT) Instructors in the world. Often characterized as having the mind of a lawyer and the heart of a therapist, Dr. Sheila has devoted over twenty years to helping people address weight and food issues by focusing on the emotional aspects of overeating.
What is happiness? We all wonder about that from time to time. And, what if we are not happy? Are we depressed?
Psychologist, Dr. Sheila Forman is here to help you answer these questions.
1. How would you define happiness?
Happiness is in internal experience of contentment. It can be generated by pleasing external events and/ or an internal sense of peace and acceptance.
2. What are some creative ways that you might advise your patients to try if they are trying to improve their happiness (aside from exercise, diet, socializing)?
I tell my patients that happiness is an inside job. One tool I give them is to keep a happiness journal. Each night before they go to sleep, they are to reflect upon one moment from the day when they felt “good” on the inside. Maybe it was after a conversation with a friend, or seeing puppy while on a walk or taking that first lick of a delicious ice cream cone. Since our brains have a strong negativity bias, the purpose of this exercise is to train the mind to notice and feel “good” when it happens.
3. How does a healthy diet affect mental health/happiness?
A diet containing a lot of processed food products can negatively affect the brain by disrupting serotonin and dopamine neural pathways. This can lead to feelings of melancholy and malaise. Overtime a diet like this can lead to and maintain depression. A whole food diet made up of nature’s bounty can have the opposite affect and promote feelings of well-being and happiness.
4. How important is socialization for people who want to be happier?
Human being are naturally social creatures. Whether we are introverts or extroverts, we need human contact. People who feel depressed tend to isolate. This isolation can overtime make matters worse. Finding time to engage with others is an antidote for depression and can even be a preventive tool to avoid it.
5. Can exercise help someone become happier? How?
Moderate exercise is know to produce the feel-good chemicals known as endorphins. Endorphins reduce pain and trigger positive feelings. A good 30-minute walk at a moderate clip is typically enough to get these good feelings surfacing.
6. When should someone talk to a mental health professional about their mental health?
Everyone feels blue from time to time. That’s a part of life. But, when feeling blue lasts for a while and gets in the way of one’s ability to life, such as preventing them for showing up for work, engaging in activities they used to enjoy, or results in changes in eating or sleeping, it is time to consult a mental health professional.
Dr. Sheila Forman is a Psychologist, Mindful Eating Instructor and the founder of TAME Your Appetite: The Art of Mindful Eating. She is an expert in helping people cope with their emotions without eating and using a non-diet approach to lose weight and make peace with food. She is also the author of several self-help books, including Do You Use Food to Cope? A Comprehensive 15-Week Program for Overcoming Emotional Overeating, and The Best Diet Begins in Your Mind - Eliminating the Eight Obstacles to Permanent Weight Loss. Her new book TAME Your Appetite: The Art of Mindful Eating, is available now. Coming soon: Mindful Bites Joyful Life: 365 Days of Mindful Eating.
For more information on Dr. Sheila Forman or to book her for an appearance, please go to www.TAMEYourAppetite.com or call 310-828-8004.
2708 Wilshire Blvd., #423
Santa Monica, CA 90403
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