How Does Diet Affects Depression?
Indeed, there is a close relationship between what we eat and how we feel. To recognize the factors that interfere with human cognition, behavior, and emotions, a new discipline has come into existence under the name of nutritional neuroscience.
Nutrition plays a significant role in the severity and duration of depression. You may be wondering how that can happen. Well, let’s discover it together!
How Many People Are Suffering from Depression?
According to World Health Organization (WHO), about 280 million people in the world are experiencing depression. This includes 5.0% of adults and 5.7% are older adults who are older than 60 years. For instance, in South Africa alone, 1 in 4 women are diagnosed with clinical depression every year.
Depression may lead to serious results such as suicide.
What Does It Mean to Be Depressed?
Being depressed is totally different from having a down day. It is a serious health problem that we have to address immediately. It occurs when you start to have low self-worth, feel guilty, lonely, and tired. Once you constantly feel that you do not belong to this world anymore, when you have those negative ideas, do not just sit there, stand up and seek help.
Depression may have several reasons. One of which, that most people are not aware of, is your diet.
How Diet Can Lead to Depression?
If you take a close look at the diet of people who are suffering from depression, you will notice that it is far from being healthy. They make poor food choices that negatively influence their mental health. But how all this can happen?
Well, some food such as high-fat dairy products, sweets, and excessive alcohol can develop inflammatory markers in the body, which give rise to depression.
Foods You Should Avoid:
Sometimes, you think that drinking one glass of alcohol is not a big deal. Other times, especially, when you feel blue, you tend to drink alcohol to escape from your hardship. However, what you are doing will result in more complications.
When consuming alcohol, serotonin and dopamine will decrease speedily. Those chemicals are highly important for your well-being. The first is responsible for balancing your mood, while the second controls the system of your brain.
– Refined foods
Refined food is a type of food that does not include its original nutrients like fast food and junk food. This food is high in calories. Consuming it daily can generate depressive symptoms.
Foods with high sugar and refined carbs are the worst. For example, a bar of chocolate can quickly boost your energy level but then it can be followed by a rapid low.
Salt has several dangerous health problems like blood pressure. But what you need to know is that salt can also severely impact the brain and leads to an increase in inflammation in the body. This in turn will trigger depression.
– Processed Meat
When you feel tired and out of the mood, the last thing you can think about is cooking. Therefore, you start consuming some quick-meal staples like sausages and corned beef.
Nevertheless, you should be conscious that these types of foods are closely linked with the risk of going through depression. This is due to their fat content, which encourages high inflammation levels in the body.
– Energy Drinks
After a bad night’s sleep, you may choose to take an energy drink, as it is an easy pick-me-up. However, energy drinks have huge effects on your mental health because of the caffeine they contain.
Yes, coffee may indeed lower depression. But too much caffeine may result in sleep disruption. The latter, in turn, leads to some symptoms of depression.
How Does Depression Affect Your Diet?
When you start feeling depressed, your relationship with food will automatically change. This can lead to:
- Losing or gaining an appetite
- Consuming salty, sweet, or fast foods
- Feeling apathy drags you to make unhealthy food choices.
Can I buy Diet Products and Medicine for Depression?
There is no simple answer to this question. Like every question related to health issues, the answer is always Yes and No at the same time.
Yes, you can but only after consultation with your own doctor. Always ask a professional and explain your situation clearly. Only your doctor can write a prescription and especially for depression.
Then and after your doctor’s green light, you can go online and shop for your prescription products from the comfort of your home, privately, and the ability to compare thousands of products to find the best price.
I personally use HPFY to order medical supplies and other health-related products online as they offer 24/7 support, an auto-order program, flexible/secure payment with competitive pricing, easy returns, and a complete archive of resources.
What You Should Eat to Fight Depression?
You do not need to panic depression has several solutions. First, be aware of your condition and bear in mind that the foods you eat impact your overall health, including your mental health.
Afterward, it would be best if you took action. So why not change your eating habits. Dieticians found out that the Mediterranean diet can help you greatly to fight these depressive symptoms you are experiencing. Also, below you will find some types of food that you should consume to beat depression.
Milk has many benefits. One of which is fighting depression. This is because milk contains calcium, vitamin D, and protein. The latter is essential. If your body lacks them, symptoms of depression may arise.
– Green Tea
Let us agree that green tea is highly beneficial to your body. It strengthens the immune system and helps fight diseases. Moreover, green tea consists of an amino acid called L-Theanine. It provides calming and soothing effects. Some researchers, as well, found that green tea directly influences the nervous system to promote calmness.
There is a relationship between your gut health and your mental health. That is, microorganisms found in your gut such as probiotics can help you regulate your mood. This can happen by reducing inflammation in your body and generating feel-good neurotransmitters.
You can find probiotics in:
Fish, particularly the more oily types such as salmon, mackerel, trout, sardines, and tuna are considered great types of food when it comes to fighting depression. They are the source of omega-3 fats that your body needs.
Cashews, brazil nuts, and hazelnuts produce omega-3 fats. But walnuts are the best. They positively support your overall brain health and give your body the omega-3 and the protein it needs.
Furthermore, walnuts are the winner’s nuts in fighting depression.
Depression is a common illness that every single human being on this planet can suffer from. But since prevention is better than cure, you need to be conscious of what you should eat and what you should avoid in order not to give rise to depressive symptoms.
Understanding the role of food and its impact on your mental health will keep you from feeling depressed.
Try not to consume high amounts of the types of food included in this article. At the same time, have a healthy diet and incorporate what we have mentioned here.