If you’re feeling depressed for what seems to be no good reason think about your diet. Many people are completely unaware that their diet has a strong influence their mood and motivation.
Here are some common dietary imbalances to watch out for:
Blood sugar imbalances
It has been estimated that 25% of normal, non-obese people have insulin resistance where blood glucose levels are not well controlled. Since the brain depends on an even supply of glucose, it’s not surprising to find that sugar has been implicated in depression amongst other things.
Shortage of some amino acids
Tryptophan and Tyrosine are amino acids from food that the body uses to produce serotonin and noradrenaline. These two neurotransmitters influence mood and motivation.
Shortage of B vitamins (vitamin B6, folate, B12)
These vitamins are critical in producing and balancing neurotransmitters as well as helping the body get rid of toxins.
Shortage of omega-3 fats
These fats have a direct influence on the production and reception of serotonin.
Here are some simple dietary recommendations to get you started but remember to discuss these with your practitioner.
- Reduce sugar and stimulants including caffeinated drinks and smoking.
- Increase fruit and vegetables to about 5 serves a day.
- Eat oily fish (e.g. tuna, salmon) at least twice a week.
- Ensure you have sufficient protein from fish, meat, eggs, beans and lentils.
- Supplements of B6, B12, folinic acid may be recommended.
To read more,
have a look at the article from Patrick Holford called “Depression: the nutrition connection“