How Do Eating Habits Affect Depression?
Consuming foods with a lot of trans fats has shown to correlate with an increased ______________ of depression.
Hi, I'm Dr. Mike Abrams, a clinical psychologist in New York and New Jersey and a psychology professor at New York University. I'm here for About.com to discuss ways in which your diet can affect mood and even depression. Although diet doesn't treat depression, there is increasing evidence that certain foods can influence your moods. In general, a well balanced diet containing all necessary nutrients is important for a healthy mood. Thus, avoid too many fast foods, eating in excess or allowing yourself to become overly hungry. In addition, there are a few dietary changes that have been shown to help improve your mood and reduce the severity of depression. One mood lifter is the combination of carbohydrates with proteins containing the amino acid tryptophan. When proteins like turkey or soy, are consumed along with starches like pasta or potatoes, the tryptophan can more easily cross into the brain and elevate levels of serotonin. This effectively constitutes a non-pharmaceutical antidepressant. Of course, the effects are brief, but making this a daily part of your diet may help improve your humor.In addition, increasing your intake of Omega-3 oils, like the oils found in certain fish, have been shown to benefit mood and concentration. In contrast, consuming a lot of foods containing transfats has been shown to correlate with an increased risk of depression.Finally, it will not be a big surprise for many to find that chocolate, particularly dark chocolate, may affect your mood. Now it is not necessary to splurge on chocolate bars to lift your spirits. Unsweetened cocoa powder mixed in foods or a hot-chocolate will do just as well to affect the way you feel.That was a little about the relationship between some foods and depression. To learn more, please visit About.com. Thanks for watching.