While it is common to experience depressive moods occasionally, it becomes an issue of concern when such emotions prevent you from functioning normally. Repeated distressful emotions could indicate the presence of a depressive disorder, such as postpartum depression or major depression. Including certain foods in your diet may help to relieve depressive symptoms to a great extent, preventing and decreasing the severity of flare-ups. Read on to find out the top 10 foods that combat depression effectively.
While a majority of lean protein sources are excellent for depression, turkey possesses a greater edge due to its high tryptophan levels. This is particularly help for depressive symptoms as it increases the production of serotonin, which is a chemical compound produced by the body that helps you feel good.
Walnuts are an ideal source of protein and heart-healthy unsaturated fats. Walnuts are good at reducing depressive symptoms, as they are one of the best plant sources of omega-3 fats. The omega-3s present in walnuts help in boosting overall brain health.
Fatty fish, such as trout, tuna, halibut, salmon, mackerel, and herring, also help in combatting depression, due to their omega-3 fat content. Omega-3 fatty acids reduce inflammation, improve brain function, and suppress inflammation. MayoClinic states that omega-3 fats are effective against dysthymia and major depression. Fish is also a good source of protein, which helps in balancing your mood.
Cherry tomatoes also help in fighting depression, due to their antioxidant content. Cherry tomatoes contain lycopene, which enhances your mood and fights depression. You should avoid cooking cherry tomatoes too much, as it destroys their nutritive value. Cherry tomatoes need to be cooked only till their skin wrinkles. To boost their nutritive value, you may use olive oil, virgin coconut oil, or canola oil.
Apart from being an excellent source of iron, spinach possesses folic acid, which boosts your mood. Folic acid enhances your immunity and red blood cells, thereby protecting you from ailments that make you feel depressed.
Honey is an excellent organic substitute for sugar, and may help in fighting depression. Honey contains quercetin and kaempferol, which are two components that improve brain health and reduce inflammation. It also works like an aphrodisiac, which helps in boosting your mood.
Whole grains also help in fighting depression, as they are high in fiber and complex carbohydrates. Whole grains, such as oatmeal, brown rice, sweet potatoes, and whole wheat pasta, are excellent choices that help in the production of serotonin, which is essential for boosting your mood.
Dark chocolate is also good for fighting depression, as it assists in releasing serotonin and relaxing blood vessels of your cardiovascular system. If you’re on a weight-loss program, keep a check on your dark chocolate intake, as it is calorie-dense, containing around 150 calories per ounce.
Cheese may not be a good idea, if you want to lose weight. However, an occasional indulgence may help control your depressive symptoms. This is due to the fact that cheese is an excellent source of zinc, which helps fight against depression. Zinc assists in cell development, enhances skin and hair texture, and improves cognitive responses.
Asparagus is also effective against depression, due to its folic acid content. Low levels of folate in the blood are associated with depression. It also contains tryptophan, which releases serotonin in the brain, a feel-good hormone.