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Depression and diet are related

Updated on December 29, 2012

Depression is an increasing problem

Depression is fast becoming the number one medical condition of our times in the developed world. It’s no small wonder that the pharmaceutical companies are making so much money. Doctors are prescribing mood altering medications or anti-depressants such as Prozac, Xanax, and Zoloft, so much so that they are now house hold names. This dramatic increase in the diagnosis of depression is akin to the dramatic increase in global warming, totally unnatural and very disturbing to say the least.

Depression sucks
Depression sucks

Depression can be a very serious, and even life threatening illness in the most severe cases. Often the medication used to treat depression can alter a persons moods in ways that can be damaging. Many courses of medication to treat depression have been linked to erratic behavior and even suicide. There is hope however in many studies that have linked the relationship between depression and diet. These studies conclude that, not only is a healthy diet able to assist with fighting depression, but that the wrong diet can often be a significant factor in the development of depression.

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Get the right diet information

Although there are many things that you can do to compliment your medication to help cure depression a simple step is to simply eat the right food. A nutritionist recommended by your doctor can assist you with designing a diet specifically designed for your particular needs. You may have heard that you should eat oily fish, or more nuts, and many more foods that will provide you with the chemicals, vitamins, and minerals that your body needs to better fight depression. And while this information is usually good it may not always be so. Any diet that is found on the internet that says will help cure depression is generic. Depression is a serious illness that affects different people in different ways. You will need to have a specific diet designed for you to get the most benefit; the wrong diet may not only provide no benefit but may actually make matters worse. Some people actually need less of the chemicals, vitamins, and minerals in their diet.

Eating a healthy diet low in processed foods is another good idea when it comes to beating and for that matter preventing depression. In the past few decades the food that we eat has developed from being cooked by a stay at home mom that spent all her day cleaning the house and cooking a fresh meal each night, to both parents of a family household working to be able to continue to afford to live and then not having the time to prepare healthy meals. Supermarkets have come to realize this fact and offer ready made meals to heat in the microwave with the minimal amount of time. These meals have little nutrition when compared with a home cooked meal, and worse they have flavor adding agents that are added because there is no inherent flavor in these meals. Excess salt, sugars, and other flavor enhancers and preservatives are the norm. These meals are usually made from produce of a quality less than that you would purchase from your supermarket if you had a choice.

Crop Dusting
Crop Dusting

Food is not what is once was

Farmers have had to adapt their practices to extract high yields from their land in an effort to remain competitive and to keep up with an increasing supply of population growth. Using chemicals such as herbicides and fertilizers, and antibiotics in live stock is not something has occurred generations ago, back when the rate of depression was so low that it was not even a recognized illness. It is with the onset of these farming practices and the TV dinner mentality that the rate of depression has soared.

Healthy Eating
Healthy Eating

Learn from others - Use your diet to combat depression

By contrast a quick comparison between countries will easily show that depression and diet are related. It is easy to see that developed countries, which all have higher rates of depression, also have diets high in processed foods. Africa with all its problems does not have a high rate of depression. Asia, again with a much lower rate of depression consumes a larger amount of seafood, rice, and other foods off the land, and a comparatively small amount of processed foods. There are many other examples of countries and cultures that could be used to highlight this point.
An improvement over the highly processed foods diet is to prepare and make your own foods from healthy recipes. To combat depression your diet should aim to be a natural balance of the major food groups, each in moderation. You don't necessarily need to spend much time in the kitchen, just get a little creative and try to make it an enjoyable experience. Get the kids to help; they will learn how to cook healthy meals too.


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