If Stress Has You Down and Depressed
Depression strikes nearly all of us at one time or another. It could be clinical depression, which is caused by our mental health and possible physical reasons – or situational depression caused by traumatic events or other negative occurrences in our lives.
It’s one of the most common illnesses striking the general population today and may cause irritability, fatigue, lack of motivation or purpose in life and extreme sadness, crying and even aches and pains.
Clinical depression sometimes requires seeking help from a counselor or physician and taking medications, but you may get relief by simply changing your diet a bit to include the right foods with elements that reduce and obliterate feelings of depression.
Processed meals, junk foods and foods high in refined sugar and carbs may contribute to the causes of depression in your life. By eating these types of foods, you’re only adding to the physical and mental problems causing the situation.
Recent studies report that a diet high in vegetables and fruits caused fewer symptoms of depression and had a cumulative effect of providing more antioxidants to the body. Antioxidants are essential to flushing out toxins and other elements adding to a sluggish immune system – and depression.
Folic acid may also reduce the risk of depression and other ailments such as insomnia and fatigue. Dark green, leafy vegetables contain folic acid as do an array of colorful vegetables such as those having deep colors.
Beets, peppers, melons, and tomatoes contain valuable nutrients that literally make us happy – boosting the brain’s production of serotonin – the happy chemical. All of the above vegetables can be grown easily in your home garden.
Whether you have an outdoor space or use another method of gardening such as containers on a small patio space or hydroponic gardening which can be done indoors, you can grow a garden for health that beats stress.
A common cause of depression is free radicals – highly damaging molecules produced by the body and are harmful to cells, cause aging and other body and mind dysfunctions.
Vitamins C and E and beta-carotene (an antioxidant) reduce the effects of free radicals on your system and render them unable to destroy your body or your happiness. Blueberries, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, and strawberries are great sources of Vitamin C and can be grown handily in your garden space.
Beta-carotene sources can be grown by planting carrots, spinach, collards, cantaloupe, and sweet potatoes. Planning and planting your own garden is one way to bring much-needed exercise into your life – and exercise boosts the production of serotonin which, in turn, lifts your mood and your health.
Look to your garden to combat bouts of depression. Working in the garden gets you out into the sunshine (a good source of Vitamin D) and the vegetation you grow and harvest will help transform a dark, gloomy mood into a happy day.