Depression is a disease that has increased dramatically in recent years. Unfortunately, the period of the pandemic, which we live in, has contributed to the emergence of many diseases of the mind as we see them today.
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But in addition to the epidemic, we cannot forget that malnutrition increases the risk of so-called “non-communicable” diseases.
What is the relationship between diet and depression?
Our body is made up of organs and systems. To ensure the proper functioning of all this “machine” we need nutrients. Because they are responsible for the proper functioning of the immune system and nervous system, as well as energy production, among other things.
This is precisely why the type of food we eat interferes with our mental health. In the past decade, studies have already indicated that eating a balanced diet reduces the chances of developing depression.
Today we know that proper nutrition not only reduces risks, but also relieves symptoms of depression. There are many studies that prove that the Mediterranean diet helps prevent and reduce symptoms of depression.
What foods have an antidepressant effect?
fruits and fish
Fruit and fish are part of the Mediterranean diet menu, because the basis of the diet consists of natural foods, such as:
- Fish and seafood
- the fruit
- white meat
In one study, these foods were shown to help reduce the risk of depression.
On the other hand, ultra-processed foods increase the chances of getting sick. Because they are high in fat and contain high doses of sugars and salt, not to mention chemical additives used to extend shelf life or enhance flavour.
In this study, diets based on fats, dairy products, refined grains, fried foods, and sweets were also shown to increase symptoms of antidepressants.
Materials: EPA, DHA, and Omega-3 fatty acids
In terms of nutrients, the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA (found in fish and seafood, with fatty fish being the richest) improve symptoms of depression, insomnia, anxiety, guilt, and even suicidal thoughts.
Vitamin and zinc deficiency
It is found abundantly in legumes, nuts, whole grains, and meat. According to the study, the lack of stocks of this nutrient exacerbates cases of depression.
Vitamins were also analyzed and it was concluded that their deficiency increases symptoms of depression. Among them are vitamins B3, B6, B8, C and folic acid.
Vitamins B3, B6, and B8 are easily found in eggs, meat, fish, and whole grains. Vitamin C can be obtained from fresh fruits and vegetables; While folic acid is found in vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and eggs.
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