Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Nutrition and Depression

This video by Neil Nedley was very interesting.  He listed the typical nutritional deficiencies that can contribute to depression.  He also argued for a plant-based diet in the process.  I'm not going to list those arguments but I encourage you to watch the video if you are interested.  I'm just going to list some of the nutritional deficiencies that can cause depression for future reference for myself:

  • Tryptophan, an amino acid.  He also mentioned tyrosine another amino acid.  You can find this in sesame seeds, almonds, walnuts, tofu, black eyed peas, and more.  Meat has tryptophan too but you need carbs for it to absorb, so don't go on a high-meat, low-carb diet!
  • omega-3.  best source is seaweed or a supplement.  Fish are too contaminated with mercury.  Flaxseed and walnuts can be converted to omega-3 but not everyone's body does this conversion.
  • folate, thiamine, very abundant in my veggie-based diet
  • iron.  good sources are avocado, green peas, mangos.  Yea, I love all those things!
  • B12.  take a supplement!
He also recommends bright light therapy.  

High cholesterol contributes to depression.  The most harmful cholesterol is that exposed to air (it oxidizes).  The most harmful foods as a result are:  custards and ice creams, pancake mixes (!), parmesan cheese, and lard.  Why pancake mix?  It usually contains dried egg whites which are ground up, so as exposed to the air as you can get.  Parmesan cheese is ground up.  ice cream I guess is exposed in the stirring process?  same with lard creation?   Vegan ice creams, while not healthy, are not nearly as harmful as the animal product.  Interesting, huh?



3 comments:

Kate said...

Thanks for the link. I'll watch it soon. I've observed that eating plant strong eliminates depression and leaves in its place a sort of joyous serenity. It's a much nicer place don't you think?

Wendy said...

very interesting! Thanks for highlighting this information.

Kaley said...

Very interesting. I wonder if anyone has researched whether specific diet plans have a higher depression rate associated with them. For example, generally speaking, who is more likely to become depressed (based only on dieting choices), vegetarians or those who eat meat?

Best,
K.
Diet Tracker