The relationship between your diet and mental health.
Different researches on human diet suggest that what we eat not only affects us physically but mentally as well. A recent study found a high level of well beings in individuals that ate more fruits and vegetables. A healthy diet includes a balance of fruits, vegetables, legumes, fishes, nuts, avocados, and olive oil supporting mental health.
The question asked by most people is, “Is there a link between my diet and mental health?” and the answer to that question is a simple “yes.” In an experiment by Felice Jacka, Director of Food and Mood Centre from the Deakin University of Australia, she tested 120 children and adults by letting them consume fast food, sugary diets, and soft drinks. She found that these individuals, in the end, had a high prevalence of depression and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The quality of food you consume dramatically influences your physical and mental health. A poor diet in many developed countries is the cause of stress and eventually, early death. Nearly about 20% of deaths worldwide gets linked to diet to some extent.
Most mental disorders, particularly anxiety and depression, are responsible for most disability globally. Despite the discovery of new medications and therapies, the rate of mental disorder is increasing instead of decreasing. The primary cause of this increase is the shift in dietary intake from vegetables to fast foods, snacks, and sugar.
Research shows that there is a connection between the bacteria in our gut and brain health. If there is an inflammation in our stomach or not enough nutrients, then mental health begins to deteriorate, leading to stress.
Better Diet Better Mental Health
A healthy diet starts in the mother’s womb. The children of women that regularly consume unhealthy food such as soft drinks and sugar had more mental problems later on. However, children of parents that have a healthier diet are less likely to have a depression attack. Diet often affects the hippocampus, which helps in learning, mental health, and learning. People that have a healthier diet show more hippocampus volume than those having a poor diet.
How Food Affects Your Mental Health
There are multiple neurotransmitters in your brain. These neurotransmitters regulate your emotions, sleep, and appetite, necessary for bodily functions. One of these neurotransmitters is serotonin; it mediates pain, moods, and hunger. Serotonin gets mostly produced by your gastrointestinal tract, where millions of neurons are present. These neurons help regulate not only your digestive system but also your emotions.
Nutrients That Fight Depression And Stress
It is quite clear from the discussion above a proper healthy diet can prevent mental disorders. Here is a list of nutrients that help fight mental illness:
- Vitamin B-12 and folates
- Omega-3 fatty acids
- Amino acids
- Vitamin D
Following a healthy diet is in everybody’s best interest. As concluded by many researchers, poor mental health is primarily the result of an unhealthy diet. Regardless if a person is male or female, aged or not, people who consumed unhealthy food often fall victim to depression and stress.
We can easily conclude that diets having high sugar content, fat and processed content is promote stress and poor brain health — however, a proper healthy diet supplement in upholding appropriate brain functions and handling some psychiatric problems. Hence, our diet should be balanced, containing whole food grains, and discussed nutrients.
There is now adequate research that shows the prominence of a proper diet for mental as well as physical well-being.