Eat Your Way to Happy
Depression is a global epidemic affecting an estimated 300 million people worldwide. This has generated a lot of research in ways to treat depression, particularly non-pharmaceutical interventions such as yoga, meditation, and exercise. It’s no surprise that research is now turning to diet as a way of managing depression.
The gut-brain connection means that what we eat influences our brain, and our brain determines our actions and moods. Recent research has shown which foods to eat to reduce the symptoms of depression.
Plant foods to eat to ease depression include:
Watercress, spinach mustard/turnip/beet greens (that’s the leaves on top), lettuce, Swiss chard/silver beet, coriander, basil, parsley, chicory greens, pomelo, capsicum, serrano/jalapeno chilli, kale, collard greens, pumpkin, dandelion greens, cauliflower, kohlrabi, red cabbage, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, acerola, butternut pumpkin, papaya, lemon, and strawberries.
Animal proteins to ease depression include:
Oysters, liver and other organ meats, poultry giblets, mussels, octopus, crag, goat, tuna, smelt, fish roe, blue fish, wolfish, pollock, lobster, rainbow trout, snails, whelks, spot fish, salmon, herring, emu, snapper.
This research highlighted that many of the foods on the list were high in anti-depressant nutrients like Vitamin B12 and omega 3 fatty acids – found in animal based foods. Although supplements may provide the nutrients missing in a purely plant based diet. .
Clearly there are concerns that some seafoods on the list may be high in heavy metals. So, start by increasing foods from the plant list before adding more seafood.
Keep Your Gut Bugs Happy and You Will be Happy Too
Remember what you eat will influence your gut microbiome, as well as modulating your immune system, and changing systemic inflammation. For this reason, choose to eat a mostly plant based diet with small amounts of animal protein. Include foods high in resistant starch e.glegumes; whole grain; cashews, green peas, green banana flour, unripe bananas.
Your but bugs and brain will thank you for including these foods in your diet.
Take a close look at what you eat to see how your food choices may be influencing your diet. Seek professional advice if needed.
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