Diet and mental health: We are, and we are, based on what we eat

Our brain is always working. It takes care of thoughts and movements, breathing and heartbeat, of the senses … the head works continuously, even while we are asleep. This means that the brain requires a constant supply of fuel.

This gasoline comes from the food we consume, and the quality and quantity of its content make the difference. In a few words, lor what we eat directly affects the structure and function of our brain and, extremely, to our state of mind.

The food we need for the coconut

The consumption of high quality foods that contain lots of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants nourishes the brain and protects it from oxidative stress. If a low quality food reaches the brain, it has little capacity to get rid of it. Diets rich in refined sugars, for example, are harmful to the brain. Multiple studies have found a correlation between a diet high in refined sugars and impaired brain function – and even a worsening of the symptoms of mood disorders, such as depression.

If our crebro is deprived of good nutrition, the consequences are to be expected. What is surprising is to discover today that, for many years, the medical field did not fully recognize this connection between mood and diet.

The opinion of some experts

"Psychiatric illnesses, such as depression or schizophreniaThey are not very different from diabetes if you look at the changes that occur in the organism at a molecular level. People with diabetes and depression are in a state of systemic inflammation, mild but chronic, "says the professor of psychiatry and medical psychology at the University of Valencia and member of the executive committee of the International Society for Research in Nutritional Psychiatry Vicent Balanzá in an article on the subject for the newspaper El País.

"Assuming this, interventions with diet and nutrition could be effective in correcting inflammation also in psychiatric diseases and, in general, to improve the prognosis of the people who suffer them." After all, the brain-mind division and body has no scientific basis, "adds the researcher of the Center for Biomedical Research in Mental Health Network.

Based on this type of affirmations researchers from all over the world have begun to work to find the relationships between food and mind, bringing together all the discoveries in the field of what has come to be called nutritional psychiatry, which, evidence, according to the experts, the consequences and correlations between what we eat, the way we feel and how we behave.

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Who has not suffered anxiety and has somatized eating, fattening, or otherwise, thinning, with the stomach closed and unable to do anything about it? No need to say the experts, we intuit in our bodies that emotions and food are related.

Some studies of interest

Studies have shown that when people take probiotics their levels of anxiety, perception of stress and mental vision improve, compared to people who did not take probiotics. Other studies have compared traditional diets, such as the Mediterranean diet and the traditional Japanese diet, with a typical Western diet and have shown that the risk of depression is 25% to 35% lower in those who consume a traditional diet. Scientists explain this difference because these traditional diets tend to be high in vegetables, fruits, raw grains, fish and seafood, and contain only modest amounts of lean meats and dairy. They are also devoid of sugars and processed and refined foods, which are basic elements of the Western dietary pattern. In addition, many of these unprocessed foods are fermented and, therefore, act as natural probiotics.

Maybe we should pay attention to how it makes us feel what we eat, not only at the moment, but the next day. We can achieve with this small routine to improve our perception of ourselves, and of the world. Many times happiness is nothing but good health, and our body is really the only space we have to live. We will have to take care of it.

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