Are You Depressed? Try these Foods to Beat Your Depression
Nutrition is one of the several overlooked aspects of mental health. The foods that we consume play a significant role in our physical health, as well as in our mental and emotional health.
While you are struggling with depression, it can feel a bit overwhelming to think about eating the right foods. Some small changes in your diet might help you in decreasing your symptoms and have a positive effect on your daily life.
Whatever be your dietary preferences, you will have a variety of options that would help in boosting your mood. This doesn’t mean you need to overhaul the eating habits and opt for consuming of these foods.
However, being conscious about which foods impact your mood and help in better management of depression symptoms.
Wild-caught fish, particularly the more oily types such as salmon, trout, mackerel, tuna (not canned), and sardines are great choices as they help in fighting depression as they are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.
Omega-3 fatty acids help in building connections between our brain cells, build and strengthen the receptor sites for neurotransmitters. An increase in the consumption of omega-3s in your diet help in increased production of serotonin and improves the mood.
Yoghurt is rich in probiotics, which are live bacteria beneficial for your gut and overall digestive system. It also plays a great role in your mind. Researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine successfully reversed the symptoms of depression in mice by feeding them a probiotic bacteria.
This bacteria was derived from live-cultures yoghurt called lactobacillus. Several other studies found that probiotics play a key role in boosting your mood as it reduces inflammation in your body, produces feel-good neurotransmitters, and affects your stress response.
Although cashews, brazil nuts and hazelnuts are rich in omega-3 fats, walnuts win this category. Walnuts support overall brain health. Being one of the highest plant-based sources of omega-3 and a great source of protein that help in keeping a balance of the blood sugar levels.
A study conducted on 26,000 American adults found that people who ate nuts and particularly walnuts have higher levels of optimism, hope, energy, concentration, and a greater interest in activities.
Flaxseeds and chia seeds are great if you are suffering from depression. These two seeds have a high concentration of omega-3 fats. Just one tablespoon of chia seeds provides approximately 61% of the daily requirement of omega-3 and flaxseeds provide about 39% of the daily recommended dose.
Besides, pumpkin and squash seeds are a great addition in increasing tryptophan, an essential amino acid that produces niacin and creating serotonin.
The bitter yet sweet taste wrapped up into a silky smooth bar of dark chocolate is something worth that every one of us loves crunching on. Yes, dark chocolate has been named on several healthy food lists, and yes, it’s for a good reason.
Dark chocolate contains a high dose of magnesium. A single square of your favorite bar will give you 95mg (24% DV) of the important mineral.
What’s the importance of magnesium? A study found that a daily dose of magnesium citrate supplement led to a significant improvement in depression and anxiety, regardless of age, gender or severity of depression.
Moreover, when participants in the same study discontinued taking the supplement, their symptoms of depression continued.
Poultry and chicken are great sources of lean protein that help in stabilizing blood sugar levels, thereby keeping your mood well-balanced during the day.
Besides, being trusted sources of lean protein, turkey, and chicken breasts are rich in tryptophan. It’s beneficial as it helps in creating serotonin, thereby assisting us in maintaining healthy sleep and a balanced mood.
Chickpeas are legumes and hence are complex carbohydrates. This means that the body will slowly digest them and provide a steady flow of energy, which is something that you need to help get you through the day.
Chickpeas are rich in zinc, a mineral responsible for improving our moods. You will not require a lot of these legumes for brightening your day. In fact, just a single cup of chickpeas, you will get 17% of the daily requirement of zinc.
Don’t like veggies? But you need to eat them too! Although it’s important to be consumed by every one of us, eating them can be of great help while you are struggling with depression. People with depression are found to have less consumption of folate in their diet compared to those who are not depressed.
Vegetables, particularly the dark green leafy ones are rich sources of folate, fiber, and nutrients and is a wonderful choice for improving and stabilizing mood.
Dark, leafy greens are also good sources of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which is one of the three main types of omega-3 fatty acids, the other two being EPA and DHA.
Cottage cheese is rich in Vitamin B, which is linked to improving the moods of the people, relieve anxiety and depression. The research found that when it’s taken along with conventional antipsychotic medication, consumption of Vitamin B helps in reducing the severity of psychotic symptoms in patients with chronic schizophrenia. Just a cup of white curdled cheese will give you 16% of the recommended daily need of Vitamin B.
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