By Mr. Luke Coutinho
Adviser of Integrative Lifestyle and Nutrition at Purenutrition.me
About 33% of the world’s disability is caused by Mental illness accounts to adult health concerns, causing in massive amount of misery and socioeconomic costs. Severe mental health problems including schizophrenia, major depressive disorder, bipolar disorder and substance-use disorders affect all age groups and befall in all nations both developing and developed.
The differential analysis of “mood swings” is vital because they are a common presenting symptom of many adolescents and children with behavioural and mood disorders. Amongst individuals aged 15-45, depressive disorders are the primary cause of disability universally.
Anxiety and Mood disorders are the most widespread mental disorders. It has been found in the study that food choice and dietary pattern plays a role in the prevention and treatment of brain-based ailments, mainly depression (of which mood swings is one of the main symptoms). Evading processed foods, for instance, those high in refined sugar or carbohydrates and consuming sufficient amounts of omega-3 fatty acids help in lessening the occurrence of mood swings.
Imperative nutrients for psychological health: B-vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, magnesium, zinc, phytonutrients and vitamin D are vital for brain health as they encourage the expression of Brain-Derived Neurotropic Factor (BDNF) and thus impact neuroplasticity.
Food is an adjustable factor of systemic inflammation, which has been described as a chief cause and concern of depression rendering to the neuroinflammatory theory of this disorder. Therefore, foods with great antidepressant food score (AFS) which means nutrient-dense sources of nutrients that play a role in the prevention and promotion of recovery from depressive disorders and found to be beneficial in the treatment or prevention of depressive disorders.
Foods with high AFS:
1. Walnuts – Walnuts are rich in alpha-linolenic acid which is a fatty acid connected with brain health and it is also a known fact that consumption of walnuts has a direct relation with considerably higher energy levels, lower depressive symptoms, more interest in doing things and better self-control of rates of movement and speech.
2. Fish – Depression is not as much, common in nations where people consume huge amounts of fish. Fish is high in vitamins such as B2 (riboflavin) & D omega-3 fatty acids. It is also a great source of minerals such as phosphorus, zinc, magnesium, iodine, calcium, iron and potassium. Our bodies do not produce omega-3 fatty acids so we must attain it from the exterior source as it is one of the most vital nutrients for mood illnesses.
3. Eggs – Eggs are a high in vitamin D and protein. They also comprise tryptophan, an amino acid that helps generate serotonin; a very significant neurotransmitter, it helps in the regulation of behaviour and mood as low level of serotonin is related with depression.
4. Mediterranean diet – Mediterranean diet has been linked with a low occurrence of depression as compared to other diets. Mediterranean diet contains the following nutrients:
a) B-vitamins: B12, B6 and folic acid
b) Minerals such as copper, zinc, magnesium and iron
c) Amino acids such as Glutamine, Tyrosine and Tryptophan
These nutrients are found in eggs, whole grains, yogurt, cheese, green leafy vegetables, beans, cabbage, broccoli, corn, spinach, poultry and fish, etc.
Nutrition can play an important part in the beginning as well as the sternness and duration of mood disorders. Many of the simply obvious food patterns such as skipping meals, poor appetite and an overriding craving for sweet foodstuffs herald mood disorders and they endure the same during the disorder. Hence, nutritional consumption of vital nutrients is effective in decreasing the signs of mood swings to an evident amount as it has been detected that nutritional eating stimuluses a person’s mental health.