In this modern world, our lives seem so rushed and we are putting so much pressure on ourselves to be all that society expects of us. As well as our families, work colleagues and friends, its no wonder there is such a concerning rise in mental health issues.
The pressure on our younger generations is so much more than we or our parents before us ever encountered. Keeping up with modern technology, learning to be kind, caring humans and keeping up with the education system, sports, and living in families where both parents work full time or are separated is a huge amount for growing kids to deal with.
So whether we are young or old – In this age of continuing technology, wifi, fast, convenient foods, drugs, alcohol and other priorities taking away or=ur natural ability to be, healthy, it’s no wonder our mental health is high on the agenda.
So how does food play a role in keeping us in tip-top mental condition? Well along with regular exercise ( also a very major factor in good mental health), food that is real and full of nutrition to feed us, not only gives us what our bodies are crying out for but helps balance our hormones, gives us the energy to deal with our hectic days and is of course delicious. There is a clear relationship between a deficiency in certain nutrients and mental health issues. Especially anxiety and depression. Most of these nutrients include some particular minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and omega 3 fatty acids.
Having a healthy relationship with food and our bodies automatically puts us in a positive vibe, giving us the tools to make the right food choices for our bodies and mind. Listening to our intuition and feeding ourselves what our bodies crave.
So what foods should we be eating? Well, whole foods of course!! Real food that is grown, pasture fed, (preferably chemical free) and intended by nature. The more vegetables we can consume in our diet the better off we will be. Small amounts of meat, fish and whole grains will help balance out our protein, fat and carb ratio.
Did you know that fat is one of the most important foods to keep our bodies in tip-top condition? Low-fat diets high in sugar are dangerous to our health, whereas eating good amounts of quality fat will lubricate our joints, brain, balance hunger and hormones and help us lose weight!! Yes, lose weight!!
Here is a list of the best readily available foods that are good for mental health:
- Leafy greens – you can never have too many
- Broccoli (also include all other green veg)
- Oily Fish, especially salmon
- Yoghurts (natural, or dairy free, no added sugar)
- Nuts, especially brazil nuts for its high selenium
- Liver (not my favourite but if you can then please do)
- Chia seeds
- Small amounts of whole grains, especially oats
- Coconut oil /olive oil
- Turmeric and ginger
The bottom line on mental health and food… Well, it has to be enjoyable as our mental satisfaction from our food clearly helps our mood. As soon as you start eating wholesome, real foods, preferably prepared at home with love, your body and mind will delight in the flavours, smells, and relaxation that these healthy whole foods bring. And the craving for fast food, junk and sugar will start to dissipate as you will FEEL SOO GOOD. And in return your body and mind will change for the better, thanking you for awakening a new and enjoyable relationship with food. Mental health symptoms may start to subside as you bring yourself into balance.
For more information or a consultation on food and mental health then please contact me.
Happy eating lovelies!!