You may be consuming things in your daily life that could be causing depression and anxiety. We all know that eating foods in their most basic and natural form is the most beneficial to the function of the body and the mind . Here are some specific ways in which the mood can be affected and how you can actively change the course of your overall mental health.
If you suffer from anxiety, make sure you are addressing basic factors that are often overlooked with mental health issues. Specifically, make sure to address the following:
Too Much Sugar
Many studies have demonstrated the connection between a high-sugar diet and poor mental health. High sugar and starchy carbohydrates lead to excessive insulin release, which can result in falling blood sugar levels, or hypoglycemia. In turn, hypoglycemia causes your brain to secrete glutamate in levels that can cause agitation, depression, anger, anxiety, and panic attacks. Additionally, sugar fans the flames of inflammation in your body.
Leaky Gut and Poorly Functioning Second Brain
As explained by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, toxicity in your gut can flow throughout your body and into your brain, where it can cause a variety of psychiatric symptoms, including anxiety and depression. Reducing gut inflammation is imperative when addressing mental health issues, so optimizing your gut flora is a critical piece. Your gut sends more signals to your brain than the brain sends to it. It also has more neurons and produces more neurotransmitters than the brain. So optimize your gut health by eliminating sugar and increasing beneficial bacteria. Make sure to include plenty of naturally fermented vegetables in your diet to help balance your gut flora, and if that’s not an option for you, consider a high-quality probiotic supplement.
Exercising creates new GABA-producing neurons that help induce a natural state of calm. Exercise also boosts your levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, which help buffer the effects of stress. Stand up as much as possible, as compelling research now tells us that prolonged sitting has an extremely detrimental impact on your health, even if you exercise regularly. Intermittent movement may be even more important than regular exercise, so make a goal of walking 7,000 to 10,000 steps daily.
Animal-sourced Omega-3 Deficiency
Your diet should include a high-quality source of animal-based omega-3 fats, like krill oil. The omega-3 fats EPA and DHA play an important role in emotional health, and deficiencies have been linked to mood disorders. Research has shown a dramatic 20 percent reduction in anxiety among medical students taking omega-3s.
Food additives and GMO Ingredients
A number of food additives and dyes are thought to negatively affect mental health, and many have been banned in Europe. Potential culprits to avoid include Blue #1 and #2 food coloring; Green #3; Orange B; Red #3 and #40; Yellow #5 and #6; and the preservative sodium benzoate. Recent research also shows that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup, which is used in large quantities on genetically engineered crops, limits your body’s ability to detoxify foreign chemical compounds. As a result, the damaging effects of those toxins are magnified, potentially resulting in a wide variety of diseases, including brain disorders that have both psychological and behavioral effects.
Limit your exposure to radio-frequency microwave radiation, cell and portable phones, and electro-pollution. This is especially true for your sleeping environment where rest and repair occur. • Other toxic exposures. Avoid all known toxins as much as possible, such as MSG and artificial sweeteners including aspartame, mercury from “silver” amalgam fillings, and fluoride in the water supply, just to name a few.