Depression can adversely aff ect your appetite and your choice of
food. But does poor eating affect your mood? Several studies have shown a strong correlation between dietary quality and the risk of depression. The diet does not only affect your physical health, but it can also affect your mental health.
These studies have taken into account age, sex, income, body mass, general health, and physical activity in their analyzes. In this way, the influence of these factors on mental health is highlighted.
Studies have shown that a healthy plant-rich diet can prevent depression. 41 studies were examined, 4 of which required the link between traditional Mediterranean diet and depression in 36,556 adults. People who consumed more Mediterranean foods had a 33% lower chance of developing depression than others. The Mediterranean diet means avoiding processed foods and foods rich in saturated fats and sugars and consuming products rich in omega 3 fatty acids, nutrients, vitamins and magnesium.
Diet can affect mental health by causing damage to the brain. This can be due to stress, insulin resistance, changes in blood flow and inflammation. The diet rich in anti-inflammatory ingredients, as well as with antioxidants commonly found in fruits, vegetables, nuts and wine, can have a direct impact on the brain. These products protect the brain from stress and inflammation. Infections can also affect neurotransmitters who are responsible for regulating emotions.
A study has shown that diet can have an impact on the formation of brain cells (neurons), especially in the part of the brain responsible for regulating emotions.
There are also evidence related to the microbes in your stomach. These microbes dissolve nutrients and create molecules that can cause inflammation or stimulate the activity of neurons. They communicate with the stomach and neurons, so in this way they influence behavior.
Animal studies have shown that plant foods improve the state of microbes in the stomach. A fat-rich diet disrupted the balance of microbes. When there is imbalance in the stomach microbes, large molecules penetrate into the blood that can affect brain function.
Recently, a field known as nutritional psychiatry emerged and is gaining momentum. Research results, although giving some direction on the impact of food on mental health, can not say whether the relationship is permanent.
The first study that proved that eating can affect depression was followed by people who consumed Mediterranean food. Their symptoms of depression improved after 12 weeks, unlike people who continued to apply old eating habits. You probably need to consider your diet, especially if you have a greater risk of depression.
Find out more about the relationship between depression and food.