Election Day Stress - Drew Ramsey MD

How are you handling the stress leading up to the election? According to a poll released on October 7th by the American Psychological Association, almost 70% of Americans find the coming election a significant source of stress….and that was three weeks ago!

I’ve noticed more jolts of excitement, fear, and even panic in myself and my patients this past week and the mash-up of election anxiety and Halloween costumes seems to continue the strange experiences of 2020. 

Interestingly, a study during the 2008 election found that on election night, levels of the stress hormone cortisol spiked for voters who supported the losing candidate, while there was no spike for the winner. 

But how bad is one night of cortisol spiking? The real challenge is dealing with chronic stressors that lead to inflammation, illness, and mental health challenges. Win or lose, this winter will be difficult… (stay tuned, I’ll be sharing more on beating winter depression next week). 

To help with election anxiety, here are some ideas, and a little research, that I hope will help make the next few days a little more manageable for you:

  1. Plan to Feed Your Brain – It’s hard to make decisions about food during emotional times. Take some time to simplify your decisions by stocking the kitchen with fresh snacks like raw nuts, guacamole, and hummus as well as soups and broths that are easy to digest if you are feeling really anxious.

  2. Take a break! Some of us may choose to deal with our anxiety by constantly checking the news and results. It makes sense, but make sure to carve out part of your day to do something else. If you have the day off, use it to do more than watch results and vote if you can. Enjoy nature, take a bath, make a nice meal, get on a call with friends or family. Take care of yourself.

  3. Keep your routine steady in unsteady times. Channel anxiety into self-care, like exercise and good sleep. I try to do walks in nature daily. I also recently added a sleep tracker to my routine and it’s helped me really get my sleep game on track. 

  4. Get support – From a therapist, family member, friend, your religious or spiritual community, nature… there are lots of options. Make sure you have someone to connect with during this time. Stress can cause us to isolate and keep us from getting the support and connections we need to feel our best.

Got Election Mental Health questions?

Ask me live on Men’s Health Magazine IG Live tomorrow at 1:30pm ET for our Ask Us Anything Friday Sessions. And if you’d like some more election day tips, you can check out this piece I contributed to, along with other mental health clinicians like my colleague, Greg Brown.

Eat Complete

Winner of a 2017 IACP Cookbook Award  •  Finalist for a Books for a Better Life Award

Named one of the top health and wellness books for 2016 by Well + Good and MindBodyGreen


From leading psychiatrist and author of Fifty Shades of Kale comes a collection of 100 simple, delicious, and affordable recipes to help you get the core nutrients your brain and body need to stay happy and healthy.

What does food have to do with brain health? Everything.

Your brain burns more of the food you eat than any other organ. It determines if you gain or lose weight, if you’re feeling energetic or fatigued, if you’re upbeat or depressed. In this essential guide and cookbook, Drew Ramsey, MD, explores the role the human brain plays in every part of your life, including mood, health, focus, memory, and appetite, and reveals what foods you need to eat to keep your brain—and by extension your body—properly fueled.

Drawing upon cutting-edge scientific research, Dr. Ramsey identifies the twenty-one nutrients most important to brain health and overall well-being—the very nutrients that are often lacking in most people’s diets. Without these nutrients, he emphasizes, our brains and bodies don’t run the way they should.

Eat Complete includes 100 appetizing, easy, gluten-free recipes engineered for optimal nourishment. It also teaches readers how to use food to correct the nutrient deficiencies causing brain drain and poor health for millions. For example:

• Start the day with an Orange Pecan Waffle or a Turmeric Raspberry Almond Smoothie, and the Vitamin E found in the nuts will work to protect vulnerable brain fat (plus the fiber keeps you satisfied until lunch).

• Enjoy Garlic Butter Shrimp over Zucchini Noodles and Mussels with Garlicky Kale Ribbons and Artichokes, and the zinc and magnesium from the seafood will help stimulate the growth of new brain cells.

• Want to slow down your brain’s aging process? Indulge with a cup of Turmeric Cinnamon Hot Chocolate, and the flavanols found in chocolate both increase blood flow to the brain and help fight age-related memory decline.

Featuring fifty stunning, full-color photographs, Eat Complete helps you pinpoint the nutrients missing from your diet and gives you tasty recipes to transform your health—and ultimately your life.


Buy Eat Complete On AmazonBuy Eat Complete on iTunesBuy Eat CompleteEat CompleteBuy Eat Complete

You have Successfully Subscribed!

The Happiness Diet

For the first time in history, too much food is making us sick. It's all too apparent that the Modern American Diet (MAD) is expanding our waistlines; what's less obvious is that it's starving and shrinking our brains. Rates of obesity and depression have recently doubled, and while these epidemics are closely linked, few experts are connecting the dots for the average American.

Using the latest data from the rapidly changing fields of neuroscience and nutrition, The Happiness Dietshows that over the past several generations small, seemingly insignificant changes to our diet have stripped it of nutrients--like magnesium, vitamin B12, iron, and vitamin D, as well as some very special fats--that are essential for happy, well-balanced brains. These shifts also explain the overabundance of mood-destroying foods in the average American's diet and why they predispose most of us to excessive weight gain.

After a clear explanation of how we've all been led so far astray, The Happiness Diet empowers the reader with simple, straightforward solutions. Graham and Ramsey show you how to steer clear of this MAD way of life with foods to swear off, shopping tips, brain-building recipes, and other practical advice, and then remake your diet by doubling down on feel-good foods--even the all-American burger.


Buy Eat Complete On AmazonBuy Eat Complete

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Fifty Shades of Kale

Kale gets sexy in Fifty Shades of Kale by Drew Ramsey, M.D., and Jennifer Iserloh, with 50 recipes that are mouth-wateringly delicious and do a body good.
Release yourself from the bondage of guilt and start cooking meals with the ingredients you love: meat, cheese, and yes—even butter. Nutrient-rich kale provides essential vitamins and minerals to keep you healthy, happy, and lean—so you can indulge in your most delicious desires. Whether you’re a cooking novice or a real kale submissive, you will undoubtedly succumb to Kale’s charms.

From Mushroom and Kale Risotto to Kale Kiwi Gazpacho, Fifty Shade of Kale offers simple ways to have your kale and eat it, too, as well as nutritional information, cooking tips, and a tutorial on kale in all her glorious shades.
Indulge your culinary passions with Fifty Shades of Kale: 50 Fresh and Satisfying Recipes That Are Bound to Please.


Buy Eat Complete On AmazonBuy Eat Complete on iTunesBuy Eat CompleteEat CompleteBuy Eat Complete

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Are you ready to eat to beat depression?

Get a head start with our free food mood log! Submit your information and we will send you the log to begin.

You have Successfully Subscribed!