Being depressed can be isolating, lonely, and make it difficult to show up for everyday life. You may feel like there is nothing that will help relieve the symptoms of depression. If you are struggling with depression there are some small steps you can take to aid in your recovery. You can start small by adding one or two foods from the list below a day. Ensuring you consume blood sugar stabilizing foods helps create more balance in your moods. Some nutrition experts believe depression is linked to brain inflammation. Foods that are anti-inflammatory are great additions. See how many of the foods below you can integrate into your daily diet.
- Walnuts are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids which support brain health. They also have heart-healthy monounsaturated fats as well as protein.
- Avocado is another source of healthy fats that are high in fiber and protein
- Beans are digested slowly helping stabilize blood sugar. Rinsing your whole beans or canned beans before cooking will reduce gas and bloating.
- Turkey is a lean protein that is also high in tryptophan which is known as a feel good, relaxing chemical. Look for sources of turkey that have no nitrates or nitrites.
- Fatty fish like salmon, tuna, mackerel, and bluefish are high in omega-3 fatty acids. Look for wild caught fish rather than farm raised to avoid unnecessary antibiotic exposure.
- Berries including strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries are high in antioxidants. Berries are undeniably a nice sweet treat. Try making a big berry salad instead of grabbing cookies or a cupcake.
- Dark leafy greens- kale, swiss chard, and spinach are packed full of nutrients that are known to fight against inflammation.
Eating for depression is a great way to supplement your healing. Foods to avoid include processed foods like white flour and sugar, anything chemical like MSG. If you can’t find it in nature, it’s probably not going to help your depression. Lowering your exposure to pesticides and antibiotics can aid in gut health which is linked to serotonin production (the chemical in our brain that combats depression). Avoid unnecessary antibiotics by choosing organic free range meats when possible, as well as choosing organic fruits and vegetables. Rome was not built in a day. Give yourself the gift of healthy nutrition one day at a time.
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