If you continually feel less energy, you are less interested in the things that have previously caused you pleasure, you have reduced appetite, you find difficult to focus and concentrate, you feel a lack of happiness and a desire for life, you are constantly feeling anxious, these are all signs of depression. Depression is really spread nowadays, so it’s important to focus on the depression warning symptoms to learn how to defend yourself.
What is the connection between food and depression?
Serotonin is the main character in this story. Serotonin is the so-called “Hormone of Happiness”. It is an important neurotransmitter that affects your mood and sleep. People believe that it is produced only in the brain, but this is wrong. Only 10% of its production occurs in the brain. The other part is synthesized from the cells in the digestive system. This is why food has a big impact on the way you feel.
If you suffer from depression, avoid the following foods:
- Refined sugar: Rapid higher and lower levels of sugar in the blood is associated with a changeable mood. This has a bad influence on biochemical balance.
- Artificial sweeteners: These sweeteners stop the production of serotonin causing a change in mood, headache and insomnia.
- Trans fat foods: they clog the arteries and do not allow the blood to reach the brain.
- Alcohol: it is the biggest suppressor of the nervous system.
- Genetically modified foods: This food is made to be resistant to bacteria, and often destroys part of the intestinal flora that is crucial to the production of some amino acids, such as tryptophan.
These are the foods that will help you cope with your depression:
Foods rich in folic acid
Folic acid is a vitamin that is necessary for cell division, DNA synthesis, and healthy red blood cell production. Folic acid may also decrease the level of homocystine, an amino acid that is associated with heart problems.
Foods containing vitamin B6:
Vitamin B6 plays an important role in the metabolism of red blood cells and proteins and in the synthesis of neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine. Low levels of this vitamin lead to increased levels of anemia, headaches and depression.
Integral cereals, fruits and vegetables give you energy, fiber and many nutrients that your body needs for optimum performance. High-quality carbohydrates can also stimulate the synthesis of serotonin.
Especially St. John’s wort, which is the most famous herb used for depression. It has been used for centuries as a remedy for depression, sleep problems and anxiety.
Foods rich in tryptophan
Tryptophan is an amino acid that is used in the biosynthesis of proteins. Tryptophan is also a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin and the hormone melatonin (which is used for the treatment of insomnia). You can find it in cocoa, sesame, eggs, meat, spirulina, almonds and chickpeas.
Give your body enough good bacteria through fermented foods. It’s best if the food is homemade to avoid too much salt and acid.
Vitamins and minerals
Some carotenoids, antioxidants, vitamin C and vitamins from group B are essential for your mood.
Omega 3 fatty acids
They are a major factor in regulating brain health and mood.
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