Is Your Diet Making You Feel Depressed?
Can eating particular foods enhance your mood and treat the symptoms of depression? No, not really; however, our mood is easily depressed if nutritional deficits exist.
Scientists one thought that eating a large amount of tryptophan would make us drowsy; however, current evidence does not support this hypothesis at all.1 It is true, though, that we must get enough of all the nutrients our body needs in order to ward off symptoms of depression.1 Again, it isn’t the surplus, it’s the deficits that affect our moods.1
For example, studies have shown that consuming too little tryptophan makes people depressed and angry.1 Too little B and C vitamins will also induce changes in our brain function that will become noticeable after a few weeks of deprivation.1 Many believe that giving high doses of the needed nutrients will rapidly improve our mood; however, this isn’t the case.1
Dietary supplements do not increase our mood.1 In fact, sticking to a healthy, nutrient-rich diet is the best way to ward off deficits and regain our needed nutrients.1 Over time, your nutrient levels will be back to normal, and you will feel better.1 Unless there is a serious deficit, pills are actually not needed.1
While nutrients help with the production of serotonin in the brain, which increases our feeling of happiness, taking supplements to increase the production even more is pointless.1 Extra serotonin is simply discarded from the brain.1
Overall, if you are feeling down, it could very well be your diet—which is lacking in the nutrients needed for optimal health.1 Yet, do not expect your diet to make you feel happy, as often, a good diet will only prevent you from further feeling depressed.1