Most people have heard of serotonin before and it's link to depression.
Well technically a lack of serotonin would be the link!! It is often referred to as the feel good chemical. Serotonin which acts as a neurotransmitter is manufactured in the brain and helps relay messages from one area to another. Some of these areas include mood, appetite, sleep, learning, memory etc. Researchers believe that imbalances of serotonin can lead to depression. Which makes sense if you think about all the areas that it effects.
People that suffer depression are often prescribed antidepressant medications that are known as SSRI's ( selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) and SNRI's ( serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors). It is thought that these may help reduce symptoms of depression.
But that can't be all that could possibly work right?? Not everybody has the desire to commit to a regime of pills and ends up looking for other more natural options. Well rest assured they come in the plenty!!
We all know that so many foods can act as a sort of medication as well. Not the kind with side effects of course!! Though something to regulate and balance those specific areas we might need it. Overall a good diet and healthy lifestyle are markers for good health. Going a little further here are a few specific choices that one might choose if they are looking to sort out a possible serotonin imbalance. These foods contain the nutrients that the brain needs to preform at its best :)
Bananas help raise serotonin, Flax seeds, walnuts and chia seeds which are loaded with omega 3's are great for brain nutrients. Kelp and other sea veggies are great sources of protein, magnesium and omega 3's, all happily welcomed by the brain!!
Foods high in tryptophan, a precursor to serotonin are great as well. Some of these include cashews, sesame seeds, avocado, guava etc. Our number choice for obvious reason would have to be the ever fabulous cacao!! It literally makes opioids that help make us happy :) it also contains so many other amazing nutrients that help us to stay healthy. We can't leave out how darn great it tastes too! A versatile tasty nutrient that is abundant in the "raw" diet and perfect anytime of day :) Yum Yum!!!!!!!!
Along with these foods and others maintaining daily exercise, meditation, and avoiding sugary, fatty, caffeinated foods is also very wise.
A little vitamin D can go a long way as well, so getting outside is important. ( even if just for minutes at a time)
If you can beat the blues with cacao why the heck not give it a try!!
Have you had positive results combatting depression when choosing food as your medicine?