3 Nutrients to Consider for Better Mental Health
It is undeniable that more and more people are becoming more aware about the potential impacts of mental health issues and how crucial it is to address these. The challenge however, lies in the complexities of these particular health conditions.
Not all mental health problems can be addressed the same since these can affect people in many different ways. What can work for someone may not be as effective for another.
There are certain medicines and therapies that have been recommended to help with mental health, but did you know that you can utilize your diet to improve it too? There are certain nutrients found in the food you eat that may help you with this particular concern – take note of what these are with this guide.
- Omega-3 fatty acids: These well-known antioxidants have been linked to better well-being and have been recognized for their potential in helping people with mental health problems.
Omega-3s’ positive impacts for mental health may have something to do with its ability to travel through your brain cell membrane and “interact” with molecules that may affect your health in a good way. Plus, these antioxidants have anti-inflammatory abilities that may help alleviate depression.
In an experiment whose results were published in 2018, omega-3 supplements had positive impacts among elderly patients who had mild to moderate depression. Meanwhile, a 2020 study revealed that omega-3 deficiencies are linked to a higher risk for psychiatric disorders such as depression, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia.
- B vitamins: The benefits of this particular group of vitamins have been well-documented and researched for many years. In this case, there are findings linking B vitamins to positive impacts to your mental health.
Just like omega-3s, B vitamins have roles in your brain as these play a role as cofactors synthesizing and regulating dopamine and serotonin. These are neurotransmitters that are involved with mood regulation.
Furthermore, 2021 findings highlighted that dietary intake of certain B vitamins resulted in improved mental health parameters. For instance, increased vitamin B7 (biotin) intake was linked to a lower risk for depression, anxiety, and stress. Moderate intakes of vitamins B1 (thiamin), B3 (niacin), and B5 (pantothenic acid) reduced someone’s risk for anxiety, while moderate intake of vitamin B9 (folic acid) lowered someone’s chances for depression.
- Zinc: Although people are more familiar with zinc’s benefits when it comes to boosting immune health and synthesizing DNA and proteins, this particular nutrient may be good for your mental well-being too. Most of your zinc is in the brain, and many studies have revealed that lower zinc levels in the brain can raise a person’s risk for depression, anxiety, and emotional instability.
Some studies have already reported that taking zinc supplements, either alone or in conjunction with antidepressants may be beneficial for people dealing with mental health issues.
Do remember though that these nutrients are not meant to serve as “cures” for mental health disorders, or “replacements” for medicines prescribed to people clinically diagnosed with these health issues.
It is still crucial that you strive to maintain a healthy lifestyle by eating nutrient-rich food, getting enough high-quality sleep, and including frequent exercise in your daily routine.
If you are experiencing mental health issues though, make sure to seek the guidance of a mental health professional right away. They can provide suggestions on ways to address these problems effectively.