One in 10 American adults will struggle with depression at some point during their lives. Depression is the most prevalent mental health disorder, and one of the country’s leading causes of disability. Common treatments include talk therapy, antidepressant medications and ketamine infusions…but a new study shows that, as a mechanism to support pharmacological depression treatments, switching to a Mediterranean diet could further improve a patient’s mental health.
The Mediterranean diet has long been associated with a longer life span and reduced risk of cancer. However, Greek researchers recently presented the findings of a new study at the American Psychiatric Association’s 2019 Annual Meeting: consuming lots of vegetables and reducing alcohol and poultry intake can ward off the symptoms of depression. And this is just one of many studies reinforcing the fact that there is a connection between diet and mental health.
So, what does a Mediterranean diet look like? The following foods are the culinary cornerstones of this region’s fare:
- Olive oil
- Whole grains
- Beans & legumes
Foods to be enjoyed only in moderation include:
It is recommended that the following foods be avoided—enjoyed only infrequently as an indulgence. These foods are known to cause inflammation, which is linked with depression:
- Red meat
- Processed meats
- White bread
- Fried foods
On a cellular level, the old adage “you are what you eat” rings truer than ever, with a nutritious diet playing a role in various bodily functions, including brain chemistry and immune system functionality. And if the foods we eat can impact brain functionality and immune system health, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that our physical wellness and mental outlook can be impacted by diet, as well.
Of course, diet alone is rarely a holistic treatment for severe cases of depression. Those with mild symptoms of sadness may choose to explore a Mediterranean diet before seeking medical care, though anyone with symptoms severe enough to impact their day-to-day lives should not rely on diet alone to treat their depression. If talk therapy and antidepressant medications haven’t worked for you in the past, you may be a candidate for ketamine infusions. Ketamine infusions are effective in 70% of patients and work rapidly—oftentimes within 1-2 infusions.
Contact RestoratIV Wellness
Our ketamine clinic treats patients in the greater Philadelphia area, as well as throughout Southern New Jersey. If you or a loved one is suffering from depression and has lost all hope for happiness, please contact us. We may be the light at the end of the tunnel you feel like you’re stuck in…