Lots of people struggle under ups and downs, the stress of life events or big changes can get to us all… it’s just that there are times we can’t bounce back like we used to. In fact, estimates suggest nearly 16 million adults had (at least) one major depressive period in the last year. If you’re one of those, you are certainly not alone.
As you pursue your treatment, it’s smart to tap into the latest research on your condition. Experts have noted that both Scandinavian and Asian nations have lower rates of depression… and they also have diets rich in fish – could there be a connection? More and more science is suggesting that some foods may help with depression, recent research naming cold water fish, walnuts and canola oil as especially beneficial thanks to a natural abundance of omega-3 fatty acids in these foods.
Also of note, a team out of McLean Hospital in Belmont, MA used lab rats to uncover foods that have lots of a substance known as uridine, which appears to have positive impact on mood. Uridine is found naturally in molasses and sugar beets. A Japanese team has evidence that a diet with lots of fish is protective against both depression and suicide. A team from Finland surveyed 1,767 people and reached the conclusion that eating fish more than two times a week did show a protective effect on both depression and suicide.
Some of the other research on diet and depression finds…
B vitamins may be involved. Research finds that if you have low levels of folic acid and high levels of homocysteine (a protein) you’re more apt to be depressed. Be sure you eat lots of fruits, veggies, whole grains, legumes and nuts.
Amino acids are known to be part of making key brain chemicals like serotonin. Low levels of serotonin are thought to cause depression. Multiple studies have found that a diet with lots of tryptophan improves depression. You’ll find this in foods with plenty of proteins including meat, fish, beans, eggs.
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Fight Depression With These Foods Continued…
Carbs are all broken down into sugar, the fuel your brain needs to do its work. Eating too much sugar is known to cause swings in blood glucose levels, which can bring on (or enhance) symptoms of depression. Eat a diet that doesn’t have many refined carbs and sugar, but does have lots of fruits and veggies.
St. John’s wort is a plant that’s been used for hundreds of years as a supplement to help with anxiety and depression. While there has been evidence for it in the past, two very recent works have shown it no more effective than a placebo when treating major depression.
Treatment for depression may be most effective when it includes not just diet and supplements, but also our modern standbys of psychotherapy and medication. If you’re battling depression, you’ve likely been told to eat a healthy diet of fruits, veggies and fish, as well as getting plenty of vitamins, especially all the B’s. Beyond this, stick to your treatment plan and rest assured that your condition will improve and you will feel better.
To your good health,