What’s it about?
Eat to Beat Depression and Anxiety (2021) is innovative research on how diet affects mental health. The latest scientific research provides insights into the relationship between the gut and inflammation and maintaining a healthy microbiome.
About the author:
Drew Ramsey, MD, professor of psychiatry, licensed psychiatrist, and farmer at Columbia University. Her work focuses on treating depression and anxiety through a combination of talk therapy, medication, and diet. He is also the author of “The Happiness Diet” and has published articles in “The New York Times,” “The Atlantic,” and “Men’s Magazine.”
What can I get? Alleviate grief by changing your diet.
Nowadays, you don’t need an expert to understand that a mental crisis is imminent. Most people are overworked and stressed. Even before the global pandemic, depression, anxiety, drug abuse, and suicide were rising.
Fortunately, the dining table is one of the most accessible places to find comfort. Like physical health, your mental health depends on getting the proper nutrition. In the past few years, numerous studies have shown a direct link between diet and mental health.
Unfortunately, finding the right food can be confusing when choosing the latest popular diets and recommended superfoods. This book aims to keep you away from the conversation and show you how to make small changes to your diet to support your mental health.
Diet can help you cope with depression and anxiety.
It has long been thought that the brain will stop growing in adulthood. Still, recent scientific studies have shown that the brain’s neuroplasticity or the ability to make new connections can continue to grow throughout life. For the emerging field of dietary psychiatry, healthy eating is a simple way to increase neuroplasticity and alleviate psychological problems.
In the past ten years, people have generally believed that food is medicine. Since your brain consumes 20% of your daily calories, it is reasonable to assume that your intake of minerals, vitamins, fats, and proteins will affect your function. It is the easiest way to take care of your body every day, so it makes sense to take care of your mental health in the same way.
It is essential to understand precisely what depression and anxiety are. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, depression is usually characterized by depression, lack of energy, and concentration. In turn, anxiety manifests itself as extreme anxiety, irritability, and difficulty sleeping.
We can use drugs to treat these symptoms, but a study by the National Institute of Mental Health found that two-thirds of participants did not get relief from antidepressants. Anxiety drugs have similar results. There is a need for a way to manage symptoms, combining conversation with diet and exercise adjustments.
First of all, the author introduced the benefits of the Mediterranean diet—mainly including fruits, vegetables, fish, whole grains, and healthy fats—that can help lower cholesterol and support heart health, but that’s not all! It also supports neuroplasticity, fights inflammation, and helps maintain a healthy gut microbiota.
In the following article, we will learn which nutrient-rich foods are best for the brain. As you will soon see, many of these essential nutrients are usually packaged, so there will not be any minor changes. It isn’t good. Important. If you are one of those people who hate kale, don’t worry, there are many other healthy options to choose from.
Active lifestyle changes will help your brain development.
Depression and anxiety are barriers to change, aren’t they? The author recounted that one of his patients, a young man named Pete, felt “trapped by his position.” Not only did Pete take medication since he was a teenager, but he came from a family with a history of depression. Because his depression seemed to be hereditary, Pete was desperate.
Recent studies have shown that specific genes increase your risk of depression or anxiety, but they are far from the only factor. The field of epigenetics shows that although you were born with a specific set of genes, your life experiences and lifestyle choices (such as diet and exercise) will work hard to adapt your genome to your surroundings.
One of the brain regions affected by depression is the hippocampus, which is the brain’s memory center. As part of the limbic system that controls emotional responses, emotional disorders can affect it. Studies have shown that the hippocampus of people with depression is 20% smaller.
Interestingly, a study by the University of California, Los Angeles showed that the growth of rat hippocampus might be caused by neurotrophic factors, which are nerve growth proteins found in many foods, especially those containing omega-3 Fatty acid food. After Felice Jaka, a scientist at Deakin University in Australia, saw the University of California, Los Angeles. She conducted a study that showed that people who eat healthier foods have a larger hippocampus.
Another way to keep your brain healthy is to reduce inflammation. Inflammation itself is not harmful. It is just the body’s immune response. However, chronic stress, toxins, and hormonal imbalances can cause an overload of inflammatory molecules, disrupting neuronal function activity, and cause depression.
Although many factors can cause inflammation, including smoking and chronic stress, another major cause is the Western diet, high in carbohydrates, trans fats, and processed meats. Instead, you can help your cells deal with chronic inflammation by filling plates with colorful fruits and vegetables, seafood, and magnesium-rich foods such as avocados and dark chocolate.
That’s it. It’s not useless. You will never get stuck! Look at the author’s patient Pete. He started to replace seafood and green leafy vegetables with processed foods, and within a few months, he cheered himself up and reduced his medication.
A healthy intestine is essential for a healthy mind.
Do you feel a sense of frustration? If so, then you may feel it deep in your stomach, and there is a reason. The intestinal response is more than just an expression. Your intuition is significant to your daily operations.
Because many neurons in the gut constantly send information to the brain, for example, you are full. However, when the gastrointestinal tract (GI) is not working correctly, communication between the intestines and the brain is also interrupted. Animal studies have shown that impaired gastrointestinal function can lead to more stress and anxiety. And cognitive issues. Anyone suffering from anxiety or depression knows these symptoms.
Maintaining a healthy gastrointestinal tract requires maintaining a healthy microbiome-trillions of microorganisms found in the gut. It may sound harsh, but the bacteria in your heart do want you to stay healthy-after all, I can’t live without you.
For health, find foods you like.
The depression diet does not mean indulging in certain superfood miracles or strictly following restrictive diets, but categorizing nutrient-rich foods that are beneficial to brain health so that they can more easily incorporate them into your diet.
The categories are also flexible; if you are a vegetarian, on a ketogenic diet, or picky about food, use them as a guide. And you don’t have to worry about which foods are the most nutritious. Get all the nutrients you need.
The first category is leafy vegetables, including kale, spinach, arugula, kale, beets, and beets. These foods are not only nutritious, but also versatile-you can add them to salads, stir-fries, pesto, or smoothies.
The next category is colorful: rainbow fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, eggplant, red cabbage, and berries. Avocados are especially important here because they are rich in healthy fats and fiber. And potassium.
The seafood category may be intimidating for some people, but it is rich in omega-3 and is worth exploring. There are various dishes to choose from, from white fish and salmon to sardines and oysters, so you will most likely find something you like.
And seeds belong to the lighter category because they are very suitable as snacks. They are also very ideal for making smoothies and salads.
Speaking of meat, look for fodder. Not only is it better for the environment, but it also contains fewer calories and more nutrients. Then there are eggs and dairy products. Eggs are another vital source of nutrient-rich protein, which is versatile and affordable. Dairy products are optional, but fermented yogurt and kefir are rich in beneficial bacteria, calcium, and protein. You can feed these beneficial insects in the gut by eating fermented foods such as sauerkraut, miso, or kimchi.
The last category is dark chocolate. It is delicious, but the national health survey and inspection research found that eating a lot of food can significantly reduce the symptoms of depression.
The only “correct” way to do something is the way that works for you.
It’s time to admit the obvious: dieting is rigid. First, online resources provide a lot of conflicting information and viewing this information can be a nightmare. In addition, all these diets seem to convey the message of your poor diet. If you suffer from depression or anxiety, this news is not entirely encouraging.
It also has many untimely concepts. For example, a patient of the author ate a lot of cabbage, but the nutrition is inferior because she thinks that her waist is skinny as a sign of health. He learned this wisdom from his mother, but apparently, it no longer works for him.
Before you continue, take a few minutes to remember why you are taking this trip. Ask yourself: Why am I here? What am I interested in this topic from the beginning? Write down your main mental health issues, and then ask yourself if you are ready to make changes.
Secondly, think about your attitude towards food. Did you wash the dishes when you were a kid? Or does the food make you ashamed? Write your story and eating habits in your diary by asking the following questions: Does my family eat together? What did they eat when they were young? Would you instead go out to eat than cook? ? Researching your eating habits can help you identify challenges and growth opportunities.
After you consider your motivation, you can start with small steps, which will lead to significant changes over time. When you set and achieve small goals, you will be more inspired to solve your designed learning curve. In depression and anxiety, we often forget to be nice to ourselves. So whenever you add new food to your diet or learn to cook a new dish, stop and celebrate!
Remember, this is not a restrictive diet. You have always only eaten spinach. It’s about finding foods you like and discovering your new strengths, or maybe even really like spinach. Stick to achievable goals and watch your small achievements gradually form long-term changes and a better mood over time.
Decorate the kitchen and prepare for success.
Now that you are mentally prepared for a healthier diet, it’s time to start cooking.
But wait! Do you have all the ingredients you need? Is your kitchen a fully equipped work area or a room where the microwave oven is located? More importantly, can you cook? If you answer “no” to any of these questions, don’t worry. Remember, this is a slow and smooth process. There is no need to be afraid. You are not scared.
You have done a lot of mental work to prepare for your new lifestyle; in contrast, setting up a kitchen is easy, so don’t let this critical final step stop you!
First, take an inventory of your current kitchen. What tools do you have, and what equipment do you have? What groceries do you always have on hand? Oh yes, how does your spice rack work? Throw away what you already have, throw away what you don’t need, and take the first step towards an inspiring cooking space.
You don’t need many electrical appliances or special tools to make your kitchen within reach and prepare delicious meals. Your essential toolbox starts with a perfect knife, cutting board, metal strainer (very suitable for washing vegetables and straining pasta), pans, and frying pans. That’s it for real. As you become more confident in your cooking skills, you will add more tools as needed.
Next, check your pantry and replace processed foods with nutritious staples, whole grains, and delicious condiments. In addition, try to prepare various cooking oils, such as olive oil, vanilla oil, and coconut oil. Cook on a low heat so that all the nutrients are retained and absorbed by the fat.
Finally, it is essential to try to plan your meals because sometimes, especially when you are in a state of depression, deciding what to cook can be overwhelming. So try to make a good meal in a few days. Remember that you can’t go wrong with the label. If you want a takeaway, buy it! Just look for healthy alternatives.
This process is prolonged, from biting to biting. Once you are ready for success, all you need is the willingness to participate.