Stressed out, cranky, or down in the dumps? Are you looking for natural ways to assist with your depression recovery? Try adjusting your diet. Specific dietary changes can help you maintain energy, focus, and de-stress, helping to alleviate the blues. Below is a list of nutrients and specific foods that are proven mood-boosters.
Complex Carbs: Complex carbohydrates are metabolized most slowly and prevent mood-depleting energy crashes. Replacing simple carbohydrates, such as white bread, with foods containing quinoa, wheat germ, or amaranth can help get you through the day. These foods also tend to be higher in protein, which keeps you fuller and better focused.
Chromium: Certain nutrient deficiencies can directly alter neurological function and affect your mood. Some of these, such as chromium, can directly impact the hormonal changes that contribute to a bad mood. Studies have shown that chromium plays a significant role in increasing levels of important hormones involved in mood regulation, such as serotonin and norepinephrine. Chromium-rich foods include broccoli and grape juice.
Folate: Folate is another important nutrient involved in serotonin regulation, and it has been used in conjunction with vitamin B12 to assist with depression. Leafy greens, asparagus, and brussel sprouts are high in folate.
Iron: Iron deficiency can also contribute to fatigue and depression. While many foods are now fortified with iron, red meats, lentils, and beans are all great natural sources of iron.
Magnesium: Magnesium is another key nutrient involved in maintaining a healthy body. However, magnesium deficiency can also contribute to irritability due to its role in serotonin production. Incorporating magnesium-rich foods such as dark leafy greens, nuts, and seeds, can help balance serotonin levels.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are also essential in maintaining a healthy brain, and consumption has been linked to decreased rates of depression and mood swings. Although fish is notorious for being rich in omega-3s, flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts are also great vegetarian sources.
B Vitamins: Vitamins B6 and B12 can also assist in energy and mood stability. B6 is involved in neurotransmitter production, responsible for regulating mood and emotions. Meat, nuts, and lentils are all high in vitamin B6. Vitamin B12 is involved in nerve function and can be found in meat, eggs, and cheese. B Vitamins can also effectively be consumed as in a supplement form.
Shifting your diet can be a great way to manage all sorts of physical and emotional ailments—including depression. For many people, however, depression recovery requires more than just diet changes. True healing requires a broader, more holistic approach. Our team at The Center • A Place of HOPE specializes in the holistic treatment of depression, and we are here to help. The Center • A Place of HOPE has been ranked as the #1 treatment facility for depression in the United States. Our expert dietitians work alongside the rest of our team to create individualized treatment programs that address the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual dimensions of recovery. If you are ready to regain true joy and happiness and overcome your depression, fill out this form or call 1-888-747-5592 to speak with a depression recovery specialist today.