on 28th September 2018 | Healthy lifestyle

Look after your mental health by looking after your diet

looking after your mental health

Look after your mental health by looking after your diet

There was a time it might have seemed far-fetched to say that what you eat affects your mental health. But, that’s exactly what more and more research suggests.

We can’t say that diet has a direct impact on mental illness like anxiety and depression because there is little evidence for this. Causal links haven’t reliably been found, only relationships. But, there is a growing body of research looking into how vital nutrition is for people looking to prevent, recover from, or cope with mental health problems.

Taking care of your brain

There is no doubt that what we eat affects the health of our organs. This leads to diseases like diabetes, heart disease, or liver damage for example. Our organs need the right vitamins, minerals, and energy to do their jobs over the course of our lives. So, when it comes to our brains, why don’t we think the same?

An unhealthy brain can express itself in many ways. Unlike with a sick heart, or a damaged liver, this can give rise to mental health issues. It’s as important in signifying poor health as physical problems. Feeding the brain with a diet that provides enough complex carbs, healthy fats, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and water helps promote healthy neurotransmitter activity. These can protect the brain from the effects of oxidants which can impact mood and mental health negatively. So, what foods can you include in your diet that can help keep your mind and body healthy?

Food for thought

In a study of nearly 300,000 people, higher fruit and vegetable consumption was associated with lower odds of depression, psychological stress, poor mood, anxiety, and perceived mental health. This doesn’t mean that eating in a healthy way is the direct cause of better mental well-being. But there is a relationship. Adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet could influence your mental health positively.

With our modern, fast-paced lifestyles, incorporating these nutrient-dense foods into our diet can be more difficult than we would like. Making little changes to the way you eat and prepare foods can be a great way to get all the minerals, vitamins, and energy that you need.

Thinking ahead

By planning your meals for the week to come, you can pick one up in the morning. Take it to the gym with you, or to work. This way, you don’t have to rely on quick fixes and fast food which is linked to poor mental wellbeing. And, just because you prepare meals in advance doesn’t mean they can’t still be delicious.

Why not try our fiery harissa and poppyseed waffle with protein-packed eggs, super greens, and delicious sweet potato, pumpkin seeds, and pomegranate. Not only does it taste good, but it also contains foods packed with antioxidants and vitamins known to keep the blues away. Or maybe you’d like something a bit more interesting for lunch, in which case you could try something like pho spiced pumpkin ramen with chilli and ginger salmon.

Meals like this, that span across the food groups, are packed with the nutrients you need for a sound mind and body. They’re also a delightful addition to your day to make getting through work that much easier.

Soulmate Food can prepare these, and hundreds of other meals for you, and deliver them straight to your door. When you sign up for one of our fantastic meals plans, you can be sure you’re eating delicious food with everything you need to stay healthy. Why not give it a try?