So, here are some quick dietary tips that will help ease anxiety and depression. More and more studies are being conducted that show a strong link between diet and anxiety/depression symptoms. Diet won’t cure anxiety or depression but it certainly can help!
Avoid/reduce: fried foods, coffee (and caffeinated drinks), dairy products, refined sugars, and alcohol!
Increase: fresh fruits and veggies, water intake, magnesium rich foods, tryptophan rich foods, Vitamin B rich foods, and omega-3 fatty acids.
- Tryptophan rich foods: nuts, seeds, soybeans (edemame, tofu, soymilk), beans and lentils
- Magnesium rich foods: green leafy vegetables, pumpkin seeds, almonds, avocado, black beans, dark chocolate (85% with less sugar)
- Vitamin B rich foods: nutritional yeast, green leafy vegetables, wheat germ, fortified cereals
- Omega-3 rich foods: chia seeds, walnuts, flaxseed (oil, or meal), Smart Balance butter replacement
Magnesium and the B vitamin group are the most important to consume daily. If you don’t think you can get them through your diet perhaps consider using supplements. Eating a dark-green leafy salad everyday with pumpkin seeds, nutritional yeast, and walnut oil with a little vinegar might do the trick!
Here are some links to articles written about food and mood:
The right thing to do:
There is no argument about what the human body needs to be healthy. The USDA has recommended dietary guidelines for men and women of all ages. Doctors and scientists all agree on the basic macronutrients, micronutrients, and phytonutrients that are required to maintain health. The macronutrients (protein, fat, and carbohydrates) are the fuels needed to keep the body moving. The micronutrients such as vitamins A, B complex, C, D, E, K along with minerals calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium, etc., and all those antioxidants in phytonutrients are not debated about their importance to maintain healthy function. Problems arise when the balance of nutrients are altered by improper food choices. Sooner or later disease and illness are to follow. This is when fixes are sought out and cures chased after. Studies targeted at one component of nutrition often lead to dietary trends and fads or miracle supplements are created as treatment. By eating foods as close to natural as possible with minimal processing and eating a mostly plant-based diet the human body will acquire all the basic nutrition it needs to maintain health.
How it can be done:
Lifestyle change. Doh! Right in the gut with that response! Nobody wants to hear that and nobody wants to do it, but that is exactly what it takes to feel good and be healthy. It doesn’t have to be all at once. It doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing. Baby steps toward permanent change can be easy. A very simple first step is to incorporate ½ cup of beans a day and remove one serving of an unhealthy choice (like soda or chips). Once that change has been made and accepted add one serving of berries a day and remove another serving of an unhealthy item. Keep the forward momentum, one food item at a time, and keep building until the nutritional minimum requirement for health is met. Baby steps. Success breeds success. Before you know it you will be eating a healthy diet and living a healthy lifestyle, warding off PREVENTABLE diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and stroke, while reversing obesity. Though every human body needs the same nutrients every person has different needs, wants, likes and dislikes. The change one person makes may differ drastically from another. Everyone has a unique starting point but the end goal is the same – health. If you would like help with an individualized plan, some guidance, or just friendly support we are here to assist.