Fighting Depression With Your Diet
foods that help depression
A World Health Organization report (1) in 2001 identified depression as the No.1 cause of disability in the US and the third biggest, behind heart disease and strokes, in Europe.
So in this article, let us talk about dealing with Depression and fighting Depression with a good diet.
First, let us define it.
Symptoms Of Depression
Have you ever had the two or more of the following feelings for more than a couple of weeks? Here is a list of symptoms of Depression:
- Bad mood for most of the day, more days than not
- poor appetite or overeating
- insomnia or sleeping too much
- low energy or fatigue
- low self-esteem
- poor concentration or difficulty making decisions
- feelings of hopelessness, helplessness
- feel hollow or empty
Two or more of these symptoms together could be an indicator of depression.
Although our own feelings and beliefs about things can cause depression, depression can also be caused by an imbalance in brain chemistry.
Today let us talk about an inbalanced chemistry caused by nutritional deficiencies.
Foods For Depression
Sometimes something as simple as changing the diet can help with depression. Here is an easy way to see if a change of diet can assist an imbalance in Brain chemistry, which can be the cause of depression. Agree with yourself to work with foods for depression for a month and see what a difference this can make:
Water can make a difference
For the next month, drink plenty of water and leave out all soft drinks, diet drinks, colored and flavored drinks from your diet. These have chemicals that can adversely affect your brain chemistry. Out of balance brain chemistry can lead to depression.
I suggest drinking one quart of water for every 50 pounds of weight. So if you weigh 150 pounds, that would be three quarts of water a day.
The brain needs to be hydrated to work at optimal level. As a health consultant I see people who only have a glass or so of water a day. Your body and your brain cannot function very well with dehydration going on. Your nervous system is a conductor of electricity and nerve impulses. Water is an electrical conductor. Drinking enough water can help with depression.
Cut Out Chemicals And Preservatives
Most snack food contains a tremendous amount of chemicals and preservatives. Things such as Nitrites, Nitrates, MSG, and sulfites. Also Splenda®,also known as Sucralose. These can cause their own chemical reactions in the brain, which can be far less than beneficial. Cut the chemicals out of your diet. Depression can often be helped with kicking the chemicals in your diet.
To cut out the chemicals and preservatives means going back to food in its natural state. Skip the pre-packaged and pre-prepared foods as much as possible.
Foods That Help With Depression
When I did Nutritional Counseling, I ran into a good number of people who ate very little vegetables or fruit. These are your prime source for minerals and vitamins. Minerals are extremely important for nerve and brain balance.
Fruits and vegetables contain the minerals, vitamins, enzymes and phytochemicals that our body needs everyday to create health. These are foods that help with Depression. You will not be healthy without eating your vegetables. Mom was right!
You will get the most minerals, vitamins and enzymes out of your raw foods. Cooking always diminishes these. Increase your vegetable consumption to about half of your meal in vegetables. If you are concerned about weight, do not eat many starchy vegetables (those grown below ground) and do include many green leafy vegetables.
In addition, a super food powder is often a good choice in a vitamin/mineral supplement that will give you a good source of nutrition.
Start Eating Fish
Oily fish, such as sardines, mackerel, trout, tuna and salmon, contain Omega-3 fatty acids, vital for a healthy brain and nervous system. Eat fish often.
A survey commissioned by the British Trout Association, showed that one-fifth of the population eat no oily fish, rising to one-third of those aged 15 to 24. Most people eat half the amount they would have eaten 50 years ago.
Your brain cannot run at peak efficiency when it does not have the fatty acids it requires. So what to do if you do not eat much fish? Take a fish oil supplement. These can be found in capsules or flavored liquid at the health food store. I generally suggest fish oils be taken at a meal.
Don’t Continue To Suffer With Depression!
The world is in the grip of a global epidemic of depression. Something as simple as deleting a few things from the diet and adding a few healthy foods, a couple supplements and water could make a difference in dealing with depression.
It is well worth it to have a healthy style of eating for a few weeks and see what it will do for you in fighting depression. If you see improvement in how you feel whether emotionally or physically then stick with it! You will be happy that you did.
Please realize that whether you felt a lessoning of your or not, you assisted your body in becoming healthier. If you do not see improvement, you may need additional detox and rebuilding strategies, which I will need to take up in an additional article.