Diet plays a huge part to maintain mental health along with exercise and taking a proper dose of medication. If we eat junk, then we feel junk. Our moods change, our depression increases and our self-esteem lowers. Don’t get me wrong. It’s perfectly okay to splurge once in a while. I know I that love fried chicken and if I could, I would splurge on that every day. However, a majority of your diet should be healthy in order to live a happy, healthy life.
Here are some ways to include healthy food into your diet:
Antioxidants are the way to go
The free radicals in our bodies can lead to cell damage. This can be risky for your brain. Even though there is no way to stop these free radicals, you can lessen their effect by eating foods rich in antioxidants.
These include beta-carotene found in apricots, broccoli, peaches, and spinach. Vitamin C found in blueberries, grapefruit, kiwi, potatoes, strawberries, and tomatoes. Yet, Vitamin E is found in nuts, seeds, and vegetable oils.
Tryptophan, an amino acid, helps make serotonin to clear your mind and boost your energy. This amino acid can be found in turkey, tuna and chicken.
Vitamin D for your brain
Research shows that those with depression may have a lower level of Vitamin D. Lack of Vitamin D can lead of seasonal affective disorder. So, have a glass of fat-free milk a day or a cup of low-fat yogurt. If you are lactose intolerant, there are Vitamin D tablets that would be best suitable for you.
Fish has always been a brain food. The Omega-3s found in fish are good for your heart. These include salmon, mackerel and tuna. In case you are allergic to shellfish, there are other sources of omega 3 including flaxseed, nuts and dark green, leafy vegetables.
In addition, cutting back on caffeine is essential. Cutting back can help lessen anxiety triggers and increase your mood. If you cut back a bit, it might help you sleep better at night.
All in all, I am not a doctor so maybe these recommendations are not meant for you. Talk to your doctor, dietician, nutritionist or whoever you refer yourself to. These are just a few suggestions letting you know that everything, including your diet, works together. Diet, exercise and the proper dose of any medication you may take is essential. Modify your lifestyle on how it will work for you and you’ll be much happier in the end.
“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” ~Lao Tzu