Monday, 6 August 2018

10 Foods That Help Fight Depression

Treatment for depression can be a complicated process involving both therapy and medication. But one often-overlooked factor is nutrition. You are what you eat, and you need to eat foods that will help you be happy.

Just part of the battle
Regular exercise, effective coping skills, and a strong social support system, plus limiting or avoiding alcohol, cigarettes, and medications that compound an emotional problem, are important considerations to your mental health. Depression also can be a symptom of other problems, so always consult a physician if emotional problems persist or interfere with your quality of life and health. But in the meantime, you can take matters into your own hands. When you choose to soothe your hunger with foods that fight depression, you get the bonus of soothing your mood.

Whole grains 
A 2015 study of almost 70,000 postmenopausal women found that eating more whole grains was associated with lower rates of depression. Whole grains is the operative word for foods that fight depression; refined grains were correlated with higher rates of depression.

One small study found that even mild dehydration can kill your mood and leave you feeling fatigued. Drink up to avoid making your depression any worse. These are the silent signs of depression you may be missing.

Research has shown promise that omega-3 fatty acids could ease depression by boosting brain function and reducing inflammation. Oily fish are rich in omega-3s, and mackerel has one of the highest concentrations. Other omega-3-rich foods that fight depression include herring, sardines, and anchovies.

Chia seeds
Vegetarians can still load up on omega-3s. With more than 4,900 milligrams of omega-3s per ounce, chia seeds give you one of the best bangs for your buck in terms of fatty acids. Try eating more walnuts and flaxseeds too.

A single banana contains 22 percent of your daily vitamin B6, a nutrient that helps your body make the neurotransmitter serotonin, and low serotonin levels are linked to depression. Studies suggest eating more B6-rich foods could ward off depression.

Bananas aren’t your only choice for vitamin B6. Six ounces of salmon contain more than half of your daily needs, not to mention a healthy dose of omega-3 fatty acids. For more foods that fight depression, load up on chicken, legumes, avocados, and dark green leafy vegetables for even more B6.

A cup of beets packs in a whopping 37 percent of your daily recommended folate. Early evidence suggests folate deficiency could be linked to depression, and might make antidepressants less effective. Study results are mixed—some have found that folic acid supplements actually don’t ease depression symptoms—but it can’t hurt to load up on healthy foods that just so happen to have the B vitamin. Include at least two folate-rich foods in your diet, such as spinach, broccoli, orange juice, or chard. Check out these other foods proven to improve your mood.

Evidence suggests vitamin B12 could help reduce symptoms of people with major depressive disorder. It’s found mostly in animal products, so try eating more trout, salmon, and sirloin steak. If you like mussels, just three ounces of clams pack in an impressive 1,400 percent of your daily B12.

Research links a high intake of flavonoids—a type of antioxidant found in fruits and vegetables—with a lower risk of depression. Flavonoid-rich foods that fight depression include plums, apples, yellow onions, and tea. 

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