Not in a good mood? Maybe it's your microbes

The mind-gut connection is well-documented.

Here’s my latest for Psychology Today.


“I’m so tired all the time.”

“I feel sad and anxious a lot.”

“I just can’t focus.”

These are observations I’ve heard patients making more and more over the years and we can come up with plenty of reasons for them. Social media and being increasingly isolated are probable contributors. The stress of having multiple responsibilities and struggling financially are undoubtedly drivers of exhaustion and anxiety. But, in the past few months, studies are being published at a furious pace, suggesting that a daily factor that we have more control over may be a much bigger contributor to our moods than was previously thought: Our food.

How can food cause fatigue, depression, anxiety, and loss of focus?

There has long been a mind-gut connection that is well documented. The vagus nerve travels down from the brain and innervates the stomach and intestines. The stomach and intestines produce a variety of substances, like serotonin, that are known to affect our moods. Many different types of health care professionals have recommended mental health treatments such as meditation, talk therapy, and even anti-depressants to improve gut health. It seems, however, that the mind-gut connection may be better understood as a gut-mind connection first.


Read my full article here on

Not in a good mood? Maybe it's your microbes. The mind-gut connection is well-documented.

Want to learn more about your own microbiome and mind-gut connection? I have several complimentary downloadable guides and of course, my book Eat Everything, and I also write on the latest info in my monthly email, you can sign up for that here.

Social Impact Authors: How & Why Dr. Dawn Harris Sherling Is Helping To Change Our World

From Authority Magazine

 I don’t want to only highlight the problem and give people something else to worry about, but help people come up with solutions that work for their lives and hopefully find joy in eating again.

Thank you to Authority magazine for this Social Impact Authors feature!


As part of my series about “authors who are making an important social impact”, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dawn Harris Sherling.

Dawn Harris Sherling M.D. is an internal medicine physician and author whose work calls out the rampant diet-related misinformation out there and simplifies the real science and latest medical advancements that can not only heal a host of digestive related illnesses, but also make eating easier and more joyful again. A graduate of the Yale University School of Medicine, she is board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine, a fellow of the American College of Physicians, a diplomate of the American Board of Obesity Medicine, and a former Instructor in Medicine at Harvard University. After struggling with IBS herself, Dr. Dawn Harris Sherling’s symptoms seemingly disappeared while in Italy. In an effort to help her patients and herself, Dr. Sherling began learning more about how food additives such as emulsifiers, thickeners, and stabilizers are wreaking havoc on our microbiomes and how eliminating them can reverse several diet-related diseases. Dr. Sherling currently sees patients at a clinic for the underserved in South Florida and teaches at the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University where she serves as Associate Professor of Internal Medicine and Associate Program Director for the Internal Medicine Residency Program. Her latest book, “Eat Everything: How to Ditch Additives and Emulsifiers, Heal Your Body, and Reclaim the Joy of Food” is available for purchase now HERE via BenBella Books and Penguin Random House Distribution.


Read the full interview here!

The Linden Review

Eat Everything was reviewed by Laura Johnson Dahlke in The Linden Review.

Here’s a snippet:

Eat Everything: How to Ditch Additives and Emulsifiers, Heal Your Body, and Reclaim the Joy of Food by Dawn Harris Sherling, is a thoughtful, explanatory book that is useful to almost anyone. The writer offers clear and valuable information about how she believes additives and emulsifiers in ultra-processed foods are causing illness, especially intestinal upset and disease. In addition, the author streamlines her advice to consumers by encouraging them to eat any whole food, closest to its original form, without worrying too much about variety.”

Read the full review here.


Dr. Dawn Sherling was recnetly interviewed for an article at about the FDA’s update to dietary guidelines.

From the original article on

On September 29th, 2022 the FDA proposed updating their definition of “healthy” food as part of their dietary guidelines, revising the criteria food manufacturers need to meet in order to legally label their food as “healthy” in the commercial setting.

The original guidelines for “healthy” food were created in 1994, and haven’t been updated since, and according to a few of the dieticians and nutritionists we spoke with, this move marks a notable attempt by the FDA to keep up with what nutritional science has known for a while.

“A person can think they are making healthy choices and can be trying really hard to do the right thing, but they are being undermined by marketing. I’m hopeful that the new FDA rules might help us to course correct a bit,” said Dr. Sherling.

Read the full article here.

Ultra-Processed Foods Linked to Premature, Preventable Deaths, New Study Finds

Dr. Dawn Sherling was recently featured in’s article:
Ultra-Processed Foods Linked to Premature, Preventable Deaths, New Study Finds

“Ultra-Processed Foods Linked to Premature, Preventable Deaths, New Study Finds”

From the original article on

“The findings contribute to a mounting body of evidence that ultra-processed foods are contributing to disease and premature deaths in a very similar fashion to tobacco use,” Dawn Harris Sherling, MD, FACP, DABOM, Clinical Affiliate Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine at Florida Atlantic University College of Medicine, tells Eat This, Not That! “The scariest part of this study as an American, however, is that in this study done with Brazilian data, it is estimated that only about 20% of their diet was ultra-processed. In the US, studies estimate that nearly 60% of the average diet is ultra-processed. It’s not scientifically sound to just triple the estimate for the US population, but it does raise very scary implications for the health of the population here.”

Read the full article here.



“Autumn Johnson, the heroine of Sherling’s impressive first novel, endures long hours in the ICU at Boston Memorial Hospital as a first-year intern. Her onerous duties leave her little time to spend with her new boyfriend, Jay Abrams, a medical student involved in diabetes research. The professional and personal intersect after a seriously ill patient with heart problems who’s brought into intensive care while Autumn is on duty proves to be Jay. Despite the heroic efforts of a senior resident, Jay, whose ailment is undiagnosed, remains near death. Autumn’s relationship with him leads the hospital to give her some time off, which she spends trying to track down what caused his condition.”

For full article click here.