meet yola robert
The Los Angeles-based Senior Contributor at Forbes, journalist, host of the I Suck at Life podcast, and co-host of the I Am Real podcast, who believes being on prescription medication is nothing to be ashamed of.
How do you make your health a priority?
My entire lifestyle is focused on making my health a priority. I try to speak about mental health in all of my work. Even in my free time, I’m constantly learning about ways to make my health a priority. It’s become an integral part of my lifestyle.
I’m a cancer and water to me is extremely healing. When I’m in the water, my soul vibrates at a different level- I feel like I become one with the water. That sounds so cheesy, but it’s a form of therapy to me. I meditate, journal, and read in the bath. I’m able to filter through my thoughts and I’m incredibly creative near or around water. All my best ideas come in the bathtub, the ocean, or in the pool. It’s a safe space where I can be my authentic self.
How does prescription medication and supplements impact your mental health?
I have been on some type of antidepressant or antianxiety medication since I was 15. I was one step away from being entered into a mental institution because I was extremely suicidal. I’m now on Cymbalta, but I did get off medication two years ago and I had to go back on it during the pandemic because I was no longer able to function. And when I say function, I mean do the dishes and brush my teeth. There’s a lot of stigma around prescription medication and I don’t think there should be. If you have a lot of, like myself, deeply rooted childhood trauma, you might need it and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.
“You know your body and mind best. Being on medication is what’s best for me.”
I take a lot of supplements, too, especially when it comes to gut health. I also take supplements that support brain function and supplements for my thyroid. So if I mess up on one of these things, then my equilibrium is out of whack and I can’t function at my highest potential.
Who has been a major influence when it comes to your health and wellbeing?
This is a new book by Dr. Steven Gundry. I just had him on my podcast and he’s fascinating. I have a lot of gut, thyroid, and a few auto-immune issues. A few years ago at 23, 24, I started to feel like I was 50. I was losing my hair. I was extremely fatigued. I had no energy and I didn’t know why. I already knew I had IBS, but I didn’t know about my thyroid. And because of Dr. Gundry and reading his work, I was able to identify what the doctors couldn’t. A lot of times, especially with thyroid health, if you go to a doctor, especially if you’re going through insurance, they don’t test T4 and T3. They don’t test your iodine. They just do TSH, which doesn’t show the whole picture. And so I finally figured out I had hypothyroidism because my iodine levels were way below the range.
“And so I finaly figured out I had hypothyroidism because my iodine levels were way below the range.”
The Energy Paradox is about using food, intermittent fasting, and sleep to change our energy levels. With mental health, when you have depression, anxiety, psychosis, or bipolar disorder, etc, oftentimes your energy levels are very low and it takes a lot of emotional and internal work to get your energy levels at what most people consider normal. So I’m very into finding ways to biohack my genetics and my body to understand how I can better increase my energy.
next story — amanda kassar