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How Diet Can Affect Your Mental Health

HomeWellnessHow Diet Can Affect Your Mental Health

Most people do not understand how their diet affects the way they think and the way their brain functions. Think about how your brain functions as long as you live. It is always working and it never stops. This is why it also needs to be taken care of. You need fuel from the food that you eat. This only means that the content of the food that you are eating also determines how your brain functions.

There are different foods that are harmful to the brain. If you insist on eating these types of food, you will definitely have a hard time making your brain function well. It is easy to determine if you lack quality nutrition. You will experience different symptoms including depression and other mood disorders. This is why you need to eat foods that are rich in vitamins and minerals. You should also focus on those that are acting as natural antioxidants that will help protect the brain from free radicals.

To know more about the effect of diet on your brain, here are some points that you should consider while making diet plans:

Eating a diet high in refined sugar impairs brain function

A study in UCLA shows that food with high levels of refined sugar can affect learning and memory negatively. According to the experiment they have conducted on rats, it has been noted that the amount of fructose coming from refined sugar has caused brain dysfunction to the subject. This happens when the insulin was blocked from storing the sugar and later on affects how the thoughts and even the emotions are being processed.

High fructose content can be found on processed foods. You’ll find it in soft drinks, condiments and even baby food. If you do not want to experience serious problems caused by refined sugar, you need to consider a change in your diet. Instead of relying on processed food, you can change to fresh fruits with natural sugar in them. To protect your brain from damages, you should also focus on foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

A glass of wine a day keeps the doctor away – or at least we hope so!

Wine with low level of alcohol is good for the brain. This is what a recently published study in Rochester found out.  

It can specifically improve the brain’s activities by removing the waste. Aside from exercises, you can also improve your brain function if you are going to consume just the right amount of wine.

However, it should be noted that excessive amount of alcohol can also have a negative effect not only to the brain but also to the body. It can cause inflammation and impairment in the cognitive abilities.

Reduce sugar and processed foods

It is clear that sugar has a negative effect to the brain. However, it was not really stated that it is totally bad for you. Your brain also needs a certain amount of sugar for it to function well. But you can get this from natural sources including grains and fruits. You should also avoid processed foods because most of these contain refined sugar. When you continue to eat processed foods and you are still adding unhealthy beverages to your diet, you will definitely suffer from these negative effects:

  • Sugar can send a signal to the brain and activates the taste buds that cause cravings and worse, addiction.
  • It makes you feel depressed contrary to the belief that it can make you feel lively.
  • It can increase the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
  • It can cause affect the anorexigenic oxytocin system of the brain that is known to control your eating or your food intake. With it being impaired, your brain will certainly inhibit overeating.

Feed your gut bugs

Gut bugs are positively affecting the brain according to science. For those who have heard of the term for the first time, gut bugs are the bacteria that you can find in your digestive system. There are billions of these bacteria and they are helping you maintain a healthy digestive health. But that is not the only thing that they do because it also appears that they are also helpful in maintaining your mental health.

In a study, it has been observed that there is a hormonal exchange between the brain and the gut bacteria. These gut bugs are known to maintain peace in the brain. With this, you can have a more improved mood if you maintain the healthy number of the gut bugs that are in your system. The best way to do this is to eat more vegetables and to add fermented food in your diet. Specifically, you should eat more broccoli, onions, leeks and garlic.

 Are you drinking water? You should be.

Almost 80% of the brain is composed of water. With this, you need to understand that this is a very important component in maintaining the function of the brain. This is why you would notice how some problems such as lack of concentration and the feeling of fatigue easily happen when you do not drink enough water. Here are the different benefits that you will be able to get if you are going to maintain the prescribed amount of water in your system:

You will be able to enhance your memory function. On the other hand, dehydration can cause problems such as difficulty in memorization. It will also be hard for you to retain information because the brain is not in its normal state due to lack of water.

There is a connection between dehydration and lack of sleep. If you want your mind to rest well during the night, you need to drink enough water throughout the day and before you go to sleep.

Water can also help improve your concentration and balance your mood.

As the brain works hard, it is very important for you to support it with the right amount of nutrition coming from the food that you are eating.

pearls of wisdom
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