One out of four people have suffered from depression at some point in their lives. Because of the nature of this mental illness, depression isn’t easy to diagnose or treat.
Now there is a new radical theory gaining traction in the world of psychiatry: depression can lead to inflammation in the brain.
There is growing evidence for this phenomenon in various scientific studies. However, there are many effective ways of managing the symptoms of depression and help you feel more vibrant and positive, according to Dr. Ellen Vora.
Eat More Fermented Foods
There is a large body of research which shows that gut health has a strong link with inflammation and overall mood. So if you’re feeling sad or blue, chances are that your gut is trying to tell you something. Our gut is inhabited by colonies of good bacteria that aid in digestion and metabolism.
One of the best way to improve your gut health is by eating more fermented foods that are rich in probiotics. You can also supplement your diet with a good-quality probiotic that’ll strengthen your gut microbiome.
Eat More Omega-3 Fats
Omega-3 fats are great for the production of a happiness hormone in our brain called serotonin which acts as a natural anti-depression medication.
A recent study showed that people who suffer from depression are more likely to be deficient in omega-3s. Cold-water fish like salmon is a great source of these healthy fats but people who don’t consume fish can fulfill their daily omega-3 requirement through a good fish oil or cod liver oil supplement.
Consume Foods High in Antioxidants
Everyone knows that antioxidants are the best anti-inflammatory agents that fight oxidative stress in our body and remove free radicals which are known for causing various diseases.
Researchers have proven that a high antioxidant intake is directly linked with improvement in mood and reduction in inflammation.
Moreover, studies have also shown that oxidative stress can increase the risk of depressive disorders and sudden mood swings. Foods that are high in antioxidants include berries, beets, dark vegetables and olive oil.
Use More Onions, garlic and Ginger in Foods
Doctors call onions, garlic and ginger the holy trinity of anti-inflammatory agents. As an added bonus, these ingredients taste great when added to stir-fries, soups and curries.
Researchers have proven that garlic can act as an effective antidepressant, although most of the research in this area has been conducted on mice instead of humans.
Cook with Black Pepper and Turmeric
Just like garlic, onions and ginger, black pepper and turmeric also have some impressive anti-inflammatory properties. Turmeric has been used in traditional ayurvedic medicine to cure a number of diseases and aid digestion.
You can add a generous pinch of this Asian spice to milk to make a traditional turmeric latte. Throwing a pinch of black pepper into the mix can increase the bioavailability of turmeric, which turns it into an even stronger anti-depressant and anti-inflammatory ingredient.
Get Plenty of Sun
Getting some sunshine and fresh air can definitely improve your mood when you’re feeling down. But research also suggests that vitamin D, an important nutrient in our body which is produced when we’re exposed to the sun’s UV rays, has a strong link with mental health disorders.
People who suffer from depression are often diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency. This also explains why most people suffer from seasonal depression or seasonal affective disorder during winters. For those who are scared of being exposed to the cancerous rays of the sun can also close the gap by taking a good vitamin D supplement.
Try Anti-Inflammatory Supplements
Black sesame seed oil, boswelia and quercetin are some of the best anti-inflammatory supplements that are recommended to patients who lack antioxidants in their diet.
Do More Detox
Detox doesn’t only mean that you have to drink juices and water for an entire week. You can also detox your environment by getting rid of cleaning and hygiene products and upgrading the quality of your diet.
You can also use plants in your house to purify the air naturally or invest in a HERA filter to make sure that the environment inside the house is less polluted than outside.