Nourishing Body~Mind Connections … foundation for successful body~mind change

Body Ö Mind

Evidence of the mind’s power to influence the body … be it seen in powerful placebo effects in medicine, in meditative strengthening of your immune system, or in auto-hypnosis to accelerate muscle growth … is growing daily. In parallel, proper nutritional preparation of the body will directly enhance … or impede … the mind in skill development, sustained focus and concentration, depressed vs. optimistic mood and related mental-emotional capacities essential to improved self-management.

When Body — Mind connections are weakened by chronic stress

Fully 41% of the early participants in the Institute’s Body Age research program dropped in-and-out of our skill development training … complaining of fatigue, "fuzzy focus", and inconsistent motivation. Follow-up biochemical assays, plus their diet logbooks offered two explanations for their limited staying power. First, their poor nutritional habits were providing them limited energy, especially because cooperating nutrients were absent. And, even more basically, their chronic state of stress had impaired their digestion and absorption of nutrients in forms essential to the body’s reformulation of these building blocks for proper cellular functioning and inter-cellular communication.

In short, their bodies’ biochemical efficiency had been eroded by stress to levels inadequate to consistently support the mental, emotional and behavioral changes they were trying to make. For example, their levels of serotonin and epinephrine had become disregulated … a hallmark of the anxious depressed mood swings typical of chronic stress … to a degree that consistent learning and practice of new lifestyle skills had become very difficult. For practical purposes, addressing their bodies’ eroded efficiency … most directly via nutritional supplementation … became our number one priority.

Nourishing the body … to support Body Ö Mind connections

To ensure that the full benefits of Body~Mind medicine are efficiently available to the more chronically stressed among us, the Institute now recommends a focus on BODY~Mind~Body medicine. If the power of the mind is to be fully engaged, first and foremost the body must be adequately nourished. Where the Body Ö Mind "bridges" are in poor repair, the advisable first step is nutritional.

Using our "Listen to Your Body" self-profile Ù corrective action

Evaluating how well nourished your Body~Mind matrix is at present is straightforward, requiring about 20 minutes to profile yourself using the following Institute questionnaire. The "body signs" in our "Listen to Your Body" profile … when summarized into your Total Score … will provide you an overall "big picture" of just how efficiently your essential body systems are presently performing and interacting. Just how capable are they to support the from-stress-to-wellness progress you plan to make?

Once completed, your profile provides the Institute’s advice for maintaining or for improving the current nourishment of your personal Body~Mind matrix … in two complementary ways. The first is to simply follow our 8-step prescription for proper mealtime nutrition. The second focuses on nutritional supplementation options … supplementing sound dietary practices … either to accelerate Body~Mind progress and/or to correct particularly disruptive stress-related conditions [insomnia, depressed / anxious mood, poor digestion, headache, immune deficiencies, and several others].

Nourishing Body~Mind Connections … Personal Self-Assessment Profile

© 2004 Hans Selye Foundation

Listen to Your Body

Instructions: Each of the following 356 items describes a possible sign of one or more nutrients in which your body may be deficient. Note: Several "body signs" appear more than once since typal analyses of Institute data show them to be members of more than one "deficiency family". Just rate each item as it appears.

Score how frequently each of these signs is appearing in you by inserting a number from "0" to "3" using the following scale

0 = Never 1 = Occasionally 2 = Quite Often 3 = Very Often

Score as a "0" any item which does not apply to you. Add up your Scores upon completion to create My Total Score

My Score

[0, 1, 2 or 3]

Indigestion or sourness 2 to 3 hours after meals

Abdominal bloating, distension

Full, loggy feeling after heavy meat meal

Loss of former taste or craving for meat

Excessive gas, belching or burping after meals

Heavy, tired feeling after eating


Burning sensation in stomach


Consistent gas & bloating from most foods

Fats / greasy foods cause nausea, headaches

Onions, cabbage, radishes, cucumbers cause bloating, gas, distress

Stool appears yellow, clay-colored, foul odored

Skin oily on nose and forehead


Bad breath / bad taste in mouth, excess body odor


Diarrhea without apparent cause

Mucous shreds in stools

Have more than three bowel movements per day

Painful, hard bowel movements

Thin, pencil-like bowel movements

Alternating constipation and diarrhea

Hemorrhoids or rectal fissure


Excess fluid retention (edema) in hands or feet

Nausea or dizziness

Poor coordination

General, overall weakness



Catch colds, flu, infections easily

Cuticles tear easily

Muscle wasting

Hair dull, dry, sparse, loose and falling out


Rough, dry, flaky or scaly scalp

Dry, brittle hair

Wounds heal poorly

Get infections easily


Brittle fingernails

Pain in forearm or biceps

Cramps in calf muscle during sleep or exercise

Painful cramping of feet or toes

Joint pains

Teeth prone to decay, frequent toothaches

Nervous tics or twitches

Nervousness or irritability

Unusual sensitivity to noise


Heart palpitations

FEMALE: Excessive, lengthy, painful menses


High cholesterol in blood

Intolerance to alcohol

Glucose intolerance, hypoglycemia


Dry hair

Brittle nails

Slow mental reactions

High ccholesterol in blood

Enlargement of thyroid gland, goitre

Heart palpitations


Overweight; obesity

Sluggish metabolism


Pale skin, palms of hands very pale

Fingernails very light in color

Fingernails flat or concave (spoon-shaped)

Thin, fragile, brittle nails

Inner side of lower eyelid is pale

Lack of endurance or stamina; anemia

Cravings for ice, ice eating


Irritable nerves or muscles; nervous tics / twitches

Muscle spasms, tremors

Irregular heartbeat

Painful and cold hands or feet

Excessive body odor

Loose or sensitive teeth

Anxiety, confusion, disorientation , irritability

Nausea, dizziness, or lightheadedness

Mental depression or apathy

Hypersensitivity to noise

Poor coordination

Cravings for chocolate

Insomnia, restlessness, hyperactivity

Bone spurs

High blood pressure


Prone to athletic injuries, strained knees or elbow

Loss of ligament tone or strength

Muscular weakness


Swelling of ankles or hands

Dry skin

Slow, rapid or irregular heartbeat, palpitations


Unusual thirst

Unusually sore or stiff muscles after exercising

High blood pressure


Muscular degeneration; muscular dystrophy

Weakened heart tissue; cardiomyopathy



Cuts, wounds, sores heal slowly

Hair or nails grow slowly

Loss of sense of smell or taste

Catch infections easily

Brittle nails

White spots on fingernails


Stretch marks

Sterility or impotence

White coating on tongue

Loss of appetite, anorexia

Sleep disturbances


MALE: Prostate problems


Poor night vision, unable to see well in dim light

Eyes sensitive to glare, sunlight or bright lights

Inability to adjust eyes when entering a dark room

Dry eyes

Eyelids red, scaly or dry

Eye inflammations, discharge, eyelids swollen or pus laden

Get colds or respiratory infections easily

Sinus problems

Abscesses in ears, mouth or salivary glands

Brittle hair

Dry, rough or scaly skin

Hard "goose bumps" on back of arms that won’t go away

Acne, pimples or blackheads


Kidney, urinary or bladder infections, burning or itching when urinating


Heart palpitations or gallop rhythm

Slow heartbeat or rapid heart beat

Enlarged heart

Diastolic blood pressure over 90

Forgetfulness, poor memory, short attention span


Feel depressed

Loss of appetite or loss of weight

Numbness, pricking or tingling in hands or feet

Loss of ankle or knee jerk reflex

Poor coordination

Stiffness or swelling in ankles, feet or legs

Cramping pains in legs

Tenderness in calf muscle under pressure



Cracks or sores in corner of mouth

Reddish-purple (magenta) colored tongue

Shiny, sore or swollen tongue

Lips red, white, scaly, swollen or chapped



Sensation of sand on inside of eyelids

Eyes sensitive to light or dimming of vision

Eyes red, itchy or burning

Red lines in whites of eyes

See spots before the eyes

Abnormally greasy or scaly skin around nose

Shrinking or "disappearing" upper lip

Falling hair, abnormal hair loss

Oily hair



Chapping of backs of hands

Itchy, red or inflamed skin, dermatitis

Loss of sense of humor


Small ulcers or canker sores in mouth

Burning sensation in hands or feet


Whitish, coated tongue

Brilliant red, painful tongue

Swollen tongue with red tip and sides

Feel as if hands or feet go numb


Irritability or nervousness

Feel confused

Can’t remember dreams


Swelling of hands, feet or ankles

Unable to close hands into tight, flat fists

Soreness, tenderness, weakness of thumb muscles

Greasy scaliness on skin near nose, mouth, eyes

Greenish tint to urine

Muscular twitching


Poor co-ordination in walking

FEMALE: Acne worse during periods


Sore, beefy red tongue

Lemon-yellowish tint to skin, pale complexion

Numbness, tingling, soreness or weakness in hands or feet

Jerking of limbs

Memory loss


Apathy, feel as if I have lost incentive in life

Depression, irritability or moodiness


Loss of appetite

Confusion, disorientation or agitation

Back pains


Dimmed vision

Poor stomach digestion, low stomach acid

FEMALE: Menstrual disturbances


Skin shiny, dry and scaly

Tongue purplish-red (magenta), swollen and painful


Muscular pains

Mental depression

Poor appetite

Fingernails a pale color


Irregular heartbeat

Hair loss

Extreme weariness, exhaustion



High blood pressure

High cholesterol levels

Bleeding ulcer

Have difficulty losing weight


Tongue red, shiny, smooth and painful

Ulcers in mouth

Red, swollen or bleeding gums


Heart palpitations

Swelling of ankles

Lightheadedness, faintness

Apathy or depression


Loss of appetite, weight loss

Greying hair

Excess pigmentation of skin

Irritable, agitated, brooding or self-conscious



Skin sensitive to sun, photosensitivity

White patches on skin, loss of pigment, vitiligo




Low sex drive

Lupus erythematosus



Pupils in eyes are unusually large, dilated

Periods of deep depression

Burning sensation of hands or feet

Poor coordination

Lightheaded or dizzy when getting up out of a lying or sitting position

Diarrhea or constipation

Numbness or tingling in hands or feet

Joint pains

Muscle cramps

Rapid heartbeat on exertion



Insomnia, sleeplessness

Fatigue, tiredness, lack of energy


Skin bruises easily, "black & blue" marks

Hemorrhages or ruptured blood vessels

Gums bleed easily, especially when brushing teeth

Bluish-red, swollen or inflamed gums

Loose teeth, loss of dental fillings

Cuts, sores, wounds heal slowly

"Fleeting" pains in joints or legs, joint tenderness

Catch infections, colds, flu or viruses easily

Listlessness, lack of endurance, tire easily

Cuticles tear easily

Excessive hair loss

Restlessness or irritability


Broken capillaries, hemorrhages or little pink spots on skin

Bloating or puffiness in face


Fragile bones


Burning in mouth and throat

Abnormal number of dental cavities

Osteoporosis (demineralized bone)

Osteomalacia (softening of bone)

Joint pains

Muscular cramps

Nearsightedness, myopia





Muscular swelling or wasting, muscular dystrophy

Brittle and falling hair

Hemolytic anemia

FEMALE: Menstrual discomfort

MALE: Low sex drive


Rough skin

Excessive perspiration

Loss of former taste or craving for meat

Nausea, inclination to vomit

Potatoes disagree

Belching accompanied by head colds

Constipation accompanied by throbbing headaches

Numbness, stiffness or loss of sensation in arms or legs

Stitching or burning pain in head with dizziness relieved by eating

Poor or failing memory


High or low blood pressure



Kidney disease


Nausea or vomiting

Abdominal pain


Excessive hair loss

Hyperactivity, irritability or nervousness



Cramps or vague abdominal aches or discomfort


Anxiety or irritability

Nervousness or restlessness

Lack of ambition, apathy or depression

Hand tremors

Poor co-ordination

Sallow complexion, greyish-greenish-yellow tint

Catch colds, infections easily




Tremors or poor coordination

Inflamed gums

Loss of ability to speak

High blood pressure

Tendency to diabetes

Mental disturbances or personality changes

Poor memory

Depression or uncontrollable crying

Metallic taste in mouth

Allergic tendencies

Loss of self-confidence

Food cravings

Facial and back pain

Loss of appetite



High blood pressure

Irritability, restlessness, excitement

Nausea, vomiting


Frequent urination

Irregular heartbeat

Ringing sound in ear, tinnitus


High blood pressure

Shingles, hives



Whitish, yellowish or brown mottling or discoloration of teeth

Pitting of teeth

Nausea or vomiting

Pain and aching of bones and spine





Muscular twitching

Abdominal cramps

Spasmodic muscular contractions

Heart palpitations

Rapid breathing


High blood pressure

Stools dry, shrunken

Excess fluid retention, edema

Stomach ulcers

Tremors, convulsions, or seizures


Excessive thirst or excessive urination

Please refer to the following page to interpret your Score     MY TOTAL SCORE = ________


Interpreting Your "Body~Mind Nourishment" Total Score

The body signs you have just rated in yourself become more common as your body ages. For example, few of us will ever have the visual acuity — for both near- and distant-vision — we had as a baby. However, much of the rate at which we age is within our control. Chronic stress, as we tracked it in over 89,000 participants in our Body Age research, is a primary driver of how many of these deteriorating signs you will see, and of how early in your life they take root.

At any age, your body’s strong natural tendency is towards positive health … to maintaining high levels of efficiency within, and across all body systems. That is, a body~mind system in which each cell is functioning at high efficiency and in which communication between cells is reliable. Poorly regulated stress, however, gradually erodes this efficiency, resulting in the body signs of wear and tear we often call "premature aging". This stress- based damage accumulates, slowly or quickly at the cellular level. For example, one identical twin will need reading glasses by age 40; the other, having grown up less stressed, not until their mid 50’s.

Here’s how we interpret the meaning of your "Body~Mind Nourishment" total score …

Your Age is …

18 - 29

30 - 44

45 - 59

60 +

Your score means …


Your score is

0 - 91

0 - 97

0 - 105

0 - 116

Good … build on your strengths


Your score is

92 - 119

98 - 127

106 - 137

117 - 148

Marginal … corrective action is advisable


Your score is

120 +

128 +

138 +

149 +

Poor … corrective action is essential

2004 Canadian Institute of Stress All rights reserved.