Almost 15 million people-nearly 7 percent of the adult American population-suffer from a major depressive disorder, according to the National Institutes of Health. To make it more clear, 1 in 20 Americans suffer from depression. The psychiatric industry itself is a $330 billion business and research has confirmed that antidepressant drugs are no more effective than sugar pills. Is it possible that certain foods can help aid in mild depression instead of pills?
The answer is clearly yes! In fact, if you were to study individuals with depression, one might find they lack a great deal of vitamins and nutrients that are vital for proper brain functioning. The bottom line is that foods can affect moods. This is not to say food will cure your depression, but there are certain foods that can help depression.
It is important to look at what does not work for depression. According to a recent study from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and the University of Granada, eating commercial baked goods cakes, croissants, donuts and fast foods such as hamburgers, hotdogs and pizza is linked to depression. In fact, the results showed that people who eat fast food, compared to those who eat little or none, are 51% more likely to develop depression.
The study shows a direct link to food and mood and even more so about fast food and mood. There are ways to help get better foods in you. If you must east fast food, go for the safer ones. Go for fresh. Try going for a salad. These can be fixed in minutes and get you in and out the door.
No time for a salad? Sandwich shops like Subway offers great fresh ingredient subs. Order your sub with avocado and get extra benefits. Try putting more veggies on the sandwich and go for healthy such as turkey, chicken or tuna.
In Tucson we have a Jason's Deli and they offer whole-wheat wraps and can be filled with field greens and spinach. They have great salads and healthier options than the typical fast food market, and they are fast!
Chipotle not only gives you control on what you can put on your burrito or bowl, they have won high marks for its commitment to organics, hormone- and antibiotic-free meats. They are quick, affordable and what I call the healthy fast food craze.
Fast foods in not only bad for your health, it wrecks havoc on your mental health and there are ways around these destructive foods. Want to grab hold of depression without expensive medications that have deadly side effects? Start simple; start with developing a better diet and cutting out the fast foods. Your mental health will thank you.