Food for Mood- Are you hangry while dieting

Food for Mood- Are you hangry while dieting

Are you psychologically starving or famished. Nutritional psychiatry is a palatable way forward in mental health issues using the latest in brain science, nutrition and mental health research of therapy considering overall wellness in relationship to how you eat without the need to separate physical health from mental health.

Nutritional psychiatry is clean eating shopping lists filled with smoothie recipes instead of pill prescriptions. A nutritious brain diet follows the same logic as any heart healthy regimen or weight control plan. It is basically ‘eat to beat depression.’

Good food ensures good thoughts, great breathing control, less oxidative stress, good mood and good behavior. The gut brain axis is at the crux from a mental health perspective. 90 per cent of serotonin receptors are located in the gut.

The connection between the gut, inflammation and brain health determines whatever happens in the gut creates inflammatory response that might follow that can affect the processes in the brain that help regulate mood swings.

Take into account the link between low levels of folic acid and long chain omega-3 fatty acids with depression.

Avoid processed foods. Get well stocked with colorful and fiber rich foods.Get a food mood intervention.

The hormone related to hunger and satiety gets frenzied on a diet making you hangry. The hormone leptin helps satiety and ghrelin signals hunger to the brain as leptin goes down and ghrelin shoots up on a diet.

Eat the rainbow that includes ingredients for a happy body and mind. Limit sugary and high-fat processed foods. Include colorful fruits and veggies such as peppers, blueberries, sweet potatoes, kale and tomatoes. Foods high in phyto nutrients reduce inflammation throughout the body and brain.

Opt for plant foods like fresh fruits, veggies and whole grains. Traditional diets benefit mental health such as Mediterranean diet, Norwegian diet and Japanese diet. Traditional diets are high on whole grains, fermented food and healthy fats.

A Mediterranean diet is rich in whole grains, legumes and seafood as well as nutrient-dense leafy greens high in fiber that produces helpful bacteria in the gut that directly helps the brain.

Fermented foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and yoghurt improve good gut bacteria. A serving of a fermented food on a daily basis is an effective way of nurturing the gut reducing intestinal bacterial overload ensuring active brain health.

Dark chocolate has antioxidants like flavonoids that increase blood flow to the brain improving mood and memory.

Eat iron rich foods such as salmon, chicken, cooked beans, tofu, pumpkin seeds, apricots, nuts, raisins and spinach.

Fatty acids improve thinking, memory and mood. Omega-3 is found in sea foods such as fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, tuna, herring and sardine. Healthy fatty acids are also found in nuts, seeds and plant oils such as coconut, olive and flax seed oil.

Increase your folate levels with folate-rich foods such as beans, lentils, fortified cereals, dark leafy greens, sunflower seeds and avocados.

Herbs such as ginseng, chamomile, curcumin, lavender and saffron can improve mental health and energy. It reduces stress, relieves anxiety and improves sleep.

Oysters are rich in vitamin B12 and reduce brain shrinkage.

Drink more water especially 15 to 30 mins before a meal to control food intake.

Do not drink calories as drinking calories is the easiest way to finish off the daily calorie limit while not feeling full. Cut out normal sodas, juices, sugary teas, fizzes, and energy drinks on a diet.

Proteins are most satiating as macro nutrient more so with higher protein diets compare to lower protein foods.

Increase your fiber intake for hunger pangs for high-volume and low-calorie food. You must include fibrous carbohydrates if you feel empty even after eating food which is just temporary.

Moderate your junk food. Do flexible dieting and moderation as calories determine weight loss or weight gain. Do eat a majority of junk food while losing weight.

Read: DIY Diet hacks for high-value low-calorie snacking

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