The Goddess Body Guidelines

Neurotransmitters: How Brain Chemicals Can Impact Your Weight

Watch The Video Above or Read The Article Below:


Neurotransmitters are the chemicals of the BRAIN that communicate with your entire body. 

I've found working in private practice that imbalances in these chemicals can make it extremely DIFFICULT for clients to lose weight, or to adhere to eating whole foods. Imbalances in brain chemicals can typically lead us to choose more addictive types of food, and with such intensity that it's basically impossible for human willpower to overcome.

For that reason it's necessary that we address these because it COULD be the one main reason you just CAN'T stick to eating healthier foods most of the time, or find yourself continuously undermining and sabotaging your nutritional plans. 

Before we dive in, I want you to imagine what it would FEEL like, to free up mental space. I mean what would it REALLY feel like for you, if your brain craved whole, healthy foods? If a bowl of strawberries tasted SO incredible to you, while simultaneously, anything with synthetic flavour just smelled and tasted like repulsive chemicals? All the addictions you used to have, just fade away. And suddenly you find your body drawn only to whole, real, delicious foods. Your Friday night date night morphs from pizza in front of the TV, to a delicious filet mignon and glass of fine wine. Your idea of Treat Foods morphs into making your own chocolate-dipped strawberries and sharing them with your husband. When you imagine reaching for a calorie-laden Starbucks drink, you instead choose a naturally sweetened Ginger Latte or Matcha Latte you made yourself with almond or coconut milk. Imagine knowing the foods you consume are nourishing you spiritually, mentally, and emotionally, without any difficulty, without any sensation of missing out - because the old foods that brought you pleasure, now strike you as repulsive and unnecessary.  

And on top of all of that, eating this way is not only so enjoyable, but it also allows you to keep your Gorgeous Goddess Body - easily. 

This is what's Possible when your brain chemicals are in Check. This is why it's SO important we dive into this today! 



The well-being and happiness neurotransmitter

Top Signs of Imbalance:

  •  anger
  •  being unusually sensitive to pain
  •  carbohydrate cravings and binge eating of carbs
  •  constipation
  •  digestive disorders
  •  feeling glum from lack of sunlight
  •  feeling overly dependent on others
  •  feeling overwhelmed
  •  hypervigilance
  •  insomnia
  •  joylessness
  •  low self-esteem
  •  migraines
  •  poor cognitive function
  •  tinnitus - ringing in the ears

Why Is It  A Problem?

Women with low serotonin are twice as likely to experience depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders than men which leads to Emotional Eating, a topic we've already covered in depth that contributes to weight gain.

Women are also more likely to exhibit carbohydrate cravings, binge eating, and subsequent weight gain as a result of this deficiency. And in fact, overeating carbs is a way of self-medicating to bring up serotonin levels naturally. (10)

Serotonin deficiency can also cause anxiety, either with or without accompanying depression. If you have anxiety + depression, it's a sign that your depression is caused by low serotonin rather than low dopamine. Depression + lethargy is more likely to be caused by low dopamine.

Sleep problems of all kinds — the inability to fall asleep, sleep deeply, or stay asleep — can be due to low serotonin levels. Adequate serotonin must be available to convert into melatonin, the hormone responsible for managing your biological clock. (25)

How Did This Happen?

  • Hormonal Imbalances
  • Poor digestion (see our last video!)
  • Post-menopausal hormonal changes
  • Low sunlight
  • Poor sleep 

Best Rebalancing Techniques:

  • Eat serotonin foods — walnuts, bananas, pineapple, kiwis, plums, and tomatoes.
  • Eat foods that lead to a downstream increase in serotonin — dark chocolate, cold-water fatty fish, green tea, fermented foods, and the spice turmeric
  • Consider working with a professional to take 5-HTP supplement (avoid if on anti-depressants or St. John's Wort) 
  • Eat healthy carbs like starchy vegetables, fruits
  • Other supplements that increase serotonin include SAM-e, B complex vitamins, magnesium, l-theanine, omega-3 essential fatty acids, and Rhodiola rosea
  • Exercise has been found to work even better for depression than antidepressants, without the side effects(35)
  • Physical exercise can make you happier by raising all of your feel-good brain chemicals, including serotonin. (33, 34)
  • Spending time with friends or getting a therapeutic massage increase serotonin levels. (31, 32)
  • Sunlight boosts serotonin, plus you get an additional benefit of vitamin D formation, another known mood booster. (38, 39)
  • Dirt has been called the “new Prozac.” (42), There’s evidence that exposure to soil can make us happy. Certain microbes found in soil increase serotonin levels. (43) This may be one of the reasons gardening is one of the best hobbies for mental well-being. (44)
  • Positive self-talk and uplifting thoughts can promote serotonin synthesis while decreasing the stress hormone cortisol. (45) Meditation is the best technique for learning how to gain control of your thoughts.
  • Meditation also increases your resilience to stress and raises serotonin levels. (46, 47, 48)

Benefits of Rebalancing: 

Women undertaking the Goddess Body Guidelines access an entire module on how to detect and target neurotransmitter deficiencies in a simplified yet highly effective way, so that they can stop blocking their own weight loss. With a wholistic approach that targets nutrition, physical activity, and lifestyle factors, this leads to setting the foundation for proper neurotransmitter balance, PLUS the addition of key, individualized supplements to expedite the process. Women use a clinical assessment tool shown to highlight neurotransmitter imbalances that may be blocking them in their weight loss and wellness. When you undertake this yourself, you get to banish the cravings for excess carbohydrates that otherwise seem impossible to overcome - especially around menstruation or ovulation. This makes for smooth, balanced weight loss with no sensations of urgency or panic around food, and a healthy mental stability in your nutrition choices. You get to lose weight easily, safely, and effectively while reducing any stress involved. 



This neurotransmitter plays a role in reward-motivated behaviour 

Top Signs of Imbalance:

  • Weight gain
  • Chocolate Cravings
  • Fatigue, apathy, moody, unable to focus or concentrate
  • Memory issues 
  • Lack of motivation, drive
  • Low energy levels 
  • Reaching for coffee or cola to get energy and stimulation 

Why Is It A Problem?

With low dopamine, you will seek to restore dopamine levels by engaging in food addictions, which temporarily bring dopamine back up. However, as we know now, food addictions lead to weight gain. Low dopamine leads to constant over-indulgence, eating when not hungry, and subsequent weight gain. 

As someone that personally has genetic dispositions to low dopamine, I can attest first-hand to how difficult it is to lose weight if dopamine isn't supported! 

How Did This Happen?

  • Genetic predisposition that hasn't been supported by healthy nutrition & lifestyle 
  • Nutrient deficiencies: Vitamin D, Magnesium, Omega 3 Fatty Acids, Vitamin B6 - these are ALL necessary for healthy hormonal functioning too(41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47)

Best Rebalancing Techniques:

  • Eating a whole foods nutritional plan most of the time that replenishes the above nutrients
  • In addition, can consider taking n-acetyl-l-tyrosine, phosphatidyl serine, gingko biloba, Antioxidants (like Alpha Lipoic Acid, selenium, NAC), curcumin, citicholine, bacopa, and SAM-e

Benefits of Rebalancing: 

By rebalancing a dopamine deficiency, women are able to break free from food addictions much more easily, putting their effects of continuous weight gain behind them. They are also able to avoid over-indulging in foods and stimulants like caffeine that their body doesn't actually want or need, and that just keep contributing to weight gain, poor hormones and poor digestion. They are also able to stop craving chocolate with a voracious tendency, especially around ovulation or periods. They can instead choose whole-food versions of chocolate, and without any dependency on it or weight gain. This is available for you in the Goddess Body Guidelines; whereas women not using the guidelines FAIL to address their dopamine issues, will almost never break free from food addictions and long term gaining back the weight. 



The neurotransmitter of relaxation, muscle tone and digestion

Top Signs of Imbalance:

  • Easily over-stimulated
  • Overwhelmed and stressed out
  • You’re filled with dread and have a knot in your stomach for no obvious reason. 
  • You’re frequently late because you’re too disorganized to get going in time.
  • You’re often doing many thing at once, but at the end of the day have little to show for your efforts.
  • Even when things are going well, you find new things to worry about.
  • You can’t relax and racing thoughts keep you up at night.
  • Sometimes your heart pounds or beats erratically for no reason.
  • You rely on high carbohydrate foods, drugs, or alcohol to relax.
  • Low GABA is associated with numerous disorders with a stress component including anxiety disorders, depression, insomnia, migraines, and fibromyalgia. (1)
  • Deficiency is also linked to autism, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and epilepsy. (2)

Why Is It A Problem?

  • People low in GABA frequently seek out starch but are really content eating anything as long as there is a lot of it to fill them up (they seek to overeat)
  • Low GABA people are emotional eaters in the truest sense of the word(60)
  • In both these cases women are driven to eat when they aren't truly hungry, leading to weight gain

How Did This Happen?

  • Not getting enough vitamin B6 (not eating enough whole foods)
  • Stressful lifestyle 

Best Rebalancing Techniques:

  • All kinds of exercise can increase your feel-good neurotransmitters, including GABA. (55)
  • Yoga in particular stands out as a proven GABA booster, one study found that just a single one-hour session of yoga increased GABA levels by 27%. (56)
  • Eating fermented foods like unpasteurized sauerkraut, kefir, and yogurt(52)
  • The top food sources of GABA are brown rice germ, sprouted grains, and spinach. (50)
  • Certain supplements have been shown to help: taurine, magnesium, L-theanine from tea, Kava, and probiotics that contain Lactobacillus brevis and Bifidobacterium dentium which so far have been found to be the best GABA producers. (32)

Benefits of Rebalancing: 

With strung out GABA levels, women are extremely prone to over-eating and emotional eating due to their sensation of being overwhelmed, stressed out, and unable to relax. They will often use food to pacify themselves when the rebalancing of their GABA is the actual root cause of what's going on. There is no capacity to make healthy food choices in this state, and yet time and again women who use the Goddess Body Guidelines are able to change nothing about their environment, job, or life - yet, by changing what they eat, life becomes happier, less stressful, and more enjoyable to them. Largely this is due to the GABA connection, and in turn, they make more nutritious choices and lose weight easily. If you have a GABA deficiency, the benefit to rebalancing it is that you will lose weight more smoothly, and no longer need to pacify yourself or your stress with food, because that issue simply won't exist. You get to lose weight without dread, frenetic energy, or feeling frazzled. You get to feel strong, grounded, and empowered instead! 



The neurotransmitter involved relaxation, sleep and tissue health

Top Signs of Imbalance:

  • Muscle wasting / deterioration / age-related muscle loss
  • Poor skin quality, early wrinkling
  • Joint issues
  • Poor flexibility
  • Low energy / fatigue
  • Digestive imbalances 

Why Is It A Problem?

Because glycine plays a role in digestion as well as muscle mass, it is critical to have healthy levels for proper weight loss and metabolism. 

Taking glycine can actually also help women lose more fat and less lean mass (muscle) which is important for metabolism. 

How Did This Happen?

Glycine is an amino acid (a protein building block) typically found in the joints of animals. Most people rely on a diet of animal muscle meat, and don't engage in eating organs or bone broth anymore, or cartilage. These would all be much more viable sources of glycine. While glycine is available in many foods, the amount required for our metabolism and skin health is much higher than the average North American diet provides. 

Best Rebalancing Techniques:

  • Taking a collagen or gelatin supplement (like Great Lakes Grassfed Gelatin; or Vital Proteins, or BulletProof Collagen) that easily mixes into beverages without any taste or texture
  • Drinking bone broth regularly 

Benefits of Rebalancing: 

When you specifically rebalance glycine, you get to enjoy healthier, stronger hair skin and nails; better digestion and healthier muscle mass - both of which mean improved metabolism, and better sleep - which means fewer calories consumed the next day and better managed hormones. Altogether, this plays a huge role in getting weight loss on track and in maintaining your new weight. Having healthy glycine levels allows you to do this without the struggle. AND - you get to look great while you're at it. 



Acteylcholine is the 'memory molecule' that helps you stay alert, focused and learn. It promotes a positive mood while modulating negative emotions like anger and fear. It also enhances brain plasticity, your brain's capacity to learn and stay mentally flexible. 

Top Signs of Imbalance:

  • Frequently forget numbers
  • Be unable to recall a name despite knowing the face
  • Forget where you left keys or wallet
  • Crave fats, a rich source of choline for acetylcholine, and fried foods: hamburgers, pizza, creamy desserts like cheesecake, ice cream, eggs, avocado, nuts, seeds
  • Low energy / fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Cognitive decline
  • Learning disabilities
  • Muscle aches
  • Nerve damage
  • Mood changes or disorders
  • Dementia

Why Is It A Problem?

You'll be left craving unhealthy fatty foods often like deep fried and fast foods which will undermine your weight loss efforts. 

Acetylcholine also keeps the muscles young and functional, allowing you to build muscle which revs up metabolism. Without it, building muscle is more challenging and therefore your metabolism stays low and you're more likely to regain lost weight. 

How Did This Happen?

  • Having fatty liver, caused by eating too many carbs (or alcohol)
  • A diet deficient in healthy fats that provide choline - e.g. the typical North American diet 

Best Rebalancing Techniques:

  • Eating egg yolks, beef, seafood(7) as well as avocados, nuts, seeds 
  • Taking supplemental choline in the form of Citicholine or Alpha GPC which can significantly improve memory, focus, attention, and encourage the growth of new brain cells - it was originally developed as a supplement to treat strokes, age-related cognitive decline, Alzheimers, and dementia (17,18, 19, 20) 
  • Considering other supportive supplements such as Bacopa, American Ginseng, Gotu Kola, acetyl-l-carnitine when there is both depression and memory loss 

Benefits of Rebalancing: 

By using our clinically based, evidenced tool to determine an acetylcholine imbalance and rebalance it safely and naturally with the Goddess Body Guidelines, women with a deficiency can expect fewer cravings for unhealthy fatty foods that throw them off their weight loss track. Of course we promote a life of balance and allow for 20% (4) treat meals a week for health and wellness (and a body weight that lasts!) so it's not to say to never have burgers - simply that burgers will no longer be your downfall. Any cravings for creamy desserts and fried foods fade away, and you get to CHOOSE when to eat these foods - versus having THEM choose and own you. You also get to feel mentally sharper and focused, upping the ante on your Divine Life, all while losing weight without sabotaging yourself with cravings. 



It's evident now that neurotransmitters - the chemicals of the brain - play a big role in our food cravings, emotional eating, reward-motivated behaviour, and even our capacity to sleep well and handle stress. All of these things are so highly implicated in weight loss, which is why I could not leave them out of our series. I'll reiterate again that it isn't about approaching each one of your imbalances one by one, as that could take forever. Rather, it's about taking a multi-targeted approach that rebalances neurotransmitters and hormones TOGETHER, achieving results more quickly and effectively. 

But before we get to putting it all together, we have ONE more topic to broach on, which is the fact that 98.5% of people have at least ONE genetic mutation that predisposes them to gaining weight - and some even have all 5 mutations possible! However, not only are genes not your destiny, but there are also VERY specific things we can do to turn OFF the expression of obesity-related genes. I myself have 3 out of 5 gene mutations that pre-dispose me to obesity, and yet I've been able to stay a healthy weight since I completed the Goddess Body Program over a year ago! What's the Secret? I'll share it with you on the next video where we dive into the Genetics of Weight Loss!

I'll catch you on the next vid!


- Erica

Already know you want Next-level professional help to get your neurotransmitters, weight & wellness in order FASTER than you can on your own? Jump to Video 7 to learn more about our Program!