Taking antidepressant medications but nothing seems to cheer you up?
More and more scientific studies show a high correlation between quality of nutrition and emotional & mental health. With the right diet, you can have a meaningful impact on your state of mind and beat depression as well as feeling stressed.
If you, like many of us, eat fast food in average between 2-4 times a week; relying on commercial & processed foods, skipping fresh fruit and vegetables, then you are depleting yourself from essential nutrients that over time will affect your sense of mind. What you want to do is to take those “baby steps” and slowly improve your food intake so you could feel better.
What if you are missing avocado, tomatoes, and fish?
Vitamin B1, thiamine – Deficiencies
If you don’t eat fish, raw nuts or seeds such as pistachio, pecan, and sesames seeds, then you are probably low on vitamin B1 – thiamine. Thiamine helps your brain to convert glucose or high blood sugar into energy. Without enough of it, your brain will run out of energy which will lead to fatigue, irritability, memory problems, anxiety, and depression.
Vitamin B3, Niacin – Deficiencies
If you don’t eat organ meats, fish or pork chops, beef, chicken and turkey you are missing the B3, niacin. Deficiency of vitamin B3 can produce agitation and anxiety, as well as mental and physical slowness.
Vitamin B5, Pantothenic Acid Deficiencies
Again, if you miss fresh avocado, tomatoes, mushrooms and fish you are missing the vitamin B5, Pantothenic Acid. Deficiency of B5 will make you fatigue; you will be easily stressed and depressed. We need B5 as precursors to the brain neural transmitter acetylcholine will form amino acids to balance stress, depression and support our memory and learning capabilities.
The same is with many other vitamins and minerals that are crucial to our brain health.
Does nutrient deficiency affect our children?
Of course, it does. Children like us will experience the same symptoms when their diet is poor, and nutrients are low. Poor school performance, weight gain, increased appetite, persistent boredom, quickness to anger, frequent complaints of physical symptoms such as headaches, stomachaches, etc. Lack of nutrients could also affect sleep patterns: inability to sleep or excessive sleeping, agitation, or irritability, fatigue or loss of energy. We can help them by adding more real foods to their diets and being the role model for your children so they could develop a better eating habit! Cook for them, eat with them and make eating times special.
What else can you do for beating your blues?
Make these lifestyle changes:
- Eat a balanced diet of meat, fruits and vegetables
- Get out, walk and exercise even for 15 minutes a day
- Take 2-3 10 minute breaks from electronics (e.g. mobile phones, tablets, PCs, TVs, etc.) during the day so your brain may rest from the information & stimuli overload
- Find something that you’re passionate about that you enjoy doing and make the time to do it on a regular basis
Nutrition based on real foods is one of the important factors for your mental health. If you eat dense whole foods, you are uploading your body with macro and micro nutrients that will support your overall health, not to mention your mental health and your mood.