Serotonin is the body’s feel-good chemical. If you’re feeling low, you can increase your brain serotonin levels by eating high-protein foods such as eggs, turkey, chicken, and legumes like beans. Fat for the win! Feeding our brains and nervous system with omega-3 fats can help regulate our mood. Oily fish like salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, and herring a couple of times a week, or handfuls of nuts and seeds each day. Quality carbs. Because our body turns carbohydrates into glucose, we need to choose the healthy ones if we want to improve our mood. Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, brown rice, legumes, and yoghurt are all good examples of carbs that provide long-lasting energy rather than a quick high, followed by a crash.
Unfortunately, it’s not just a figment of the imagination, if you feel tired and sad in the dark winter months. In fact, according to studies, more than 5% of Americans experience seasonal depression due to the lack of light and thus a serotonin deficiency in the brain. An unhealthy diet, especially one filled with processed foods can promote depression. But this need not be accepted as a fate. There are some foods that are good for our mind – and chocolate is not the only one.
Fish with their high-quality omega-3 fatty acids and walnuts, for example, can promote mental wellness. Avocado, figs, sunflower seeds, cheese, etc. support the formation of serotonin (the happiness hormone). Green vegetables such as spinach, chard, kale, parsley, but also bananas contain plenty of the anti-stress mineral magnesium, which can have a positive effect on mood swings.
Today is World Mental Health Day. It was first observed on October 10th, 1992, and since then has become a day to raise awareness about mental health issues and create lasting change. With the COVID-19 pandemic and other global issues, more people than ever are struggling with varying aspects of mental health. Now is the time to educate ourselves about mental health challenges, available resources, and how to support those around us who may be struggling. To learn more or find mental resources, check out the links below.
Picture: Mental Health Foundation UK
Keeping a balanced diet, drinking plenty of water, and keeping an eye on your alcohol and caffeine intake is very important for everyone. The importance of this is even greater for people with mental health challenges because:
– It is possible that eating and drinking healthily can improve some symptoms of disorders like anxiety and depression.
– A poor diet and unhealthy drinking habits may exacerbate poor mental health.
– Medications used to treat certain disorders may interact with foods, caffeine, and alcohol.
-Diet may have a negative effect on mental health for a variety of reasons, including changes in blood glucose levels (sugar), inflammation, or effects on microbes living in the gut (called the microbiome).
– Additionally, eating well prevents some chronic diseases like diabetes, which also affect mental health.
A person’s weight can impact their mental health. Some medicines for mental illness also cause weight gain, which adds to the problem. It is possible to improve mental health by releasing weight through be
er nutrition and exercise.
These are just some examples of the role nutrition plays on mental health, but eating right comes down to each individual’s needs. Metabolic Balance® plans are completely personalized to help you target many aspects of your health – including your mental health. If you feel like you’re struggling, then your nutrition could be a great place to start…
An important aspect of wellness is taking time away from work to rest and recharge. Research has demonstrated that people who take time off or vacations have lower levels of stress, have a reduced risk of heart disease, and increased motivation. Additional benefits of taking time away from work include:
-Improved physical health: An article by the New York Times reported that taking a vacation every 2-6 years can decrease the risk of heart disease.
-Improved mental health: Taking a vacation can decrease levels of stress, allowing the body to relax and heal.
-Decreased burnout: Employees who take time off are less likely to experience burnout and have been to shown to be more productive and creative.
The bottom line is that it is important for both your physical and mental health to take a few days off. Whether that consists of a small weekend away or a longer trip, time away from the stress and pressure of work is important. A vacation, no matter how short can help you feel refreshed and improve overall wellness.
Find joy today!
We all have a different definition joy but finding something you love and doing it often is great for our overall health! Whether it is being outside, spending time with your family, or doing self care, make sure you find joy. Have you done something you love today?
Photo: Metabolic Balance Australia and New Zealand
May is Mental Health Awareness Month! The pandemic over the past year has taken a toll on many of us while also making access to resources for mental health more challenging. Now more than ever, we need to ensure that we stay connected with members of our community and provide and receive support. Every year in America less than half the adults who struggle with mental illness actually receive the adequate care and help that they need. Take a moment today to check in with yourself or a loved one and make sure they have the support and care they need.
Photo: National Alliance on Mental Health
A change of diet through Metabolic Balance program can not only help with you physical but also mental well-being. Different chemicals and processes in the brain are responsible for your mood and are impacted by what you eat. For example, serotonin is produced in a healthy intestinal flora when the body has absorbed enough tryptophan through a healthy diet. Omega-3 fatty acids commonly found fish, flax and chia seeds are important for brain metabolism. B vitamins found in many foods including protein sources are also brain boosting vitamins. All of this is to say that, “happiness can be eaten”.
This week we celebrate International Men’s Health Week. To all the grandfathers, fathers, sons, uncles, and brothers out there take time to check in with both your mental and physical health.
At Metabolic Balance we help guide every client to optimal health by focusing on personalized nutrition.
If you want to take charge of your health visit our website or send us a message!
Photo: Metabolic Balance Australia and New Zealand
Today on our site we want to talk about plants. No, not the ones that you eat but rather the ones in your house!
Houseplants and indoor plants do not just look nice but they are also great for your mental and physical health. Studies have shown that indoor plants can boost mood, productivity, and concentration. They also “clean” the air inside by filtering toxins and producing oxygen. Since Americans spend almost 90% of their time indoors, ensuring that the air inside your house is clean is super important. Although scientists are only beginning to understand the physical and mental effects of indoor air quality, so far we have seen that indoor plants can improve air quality, reduce pollution, and improve wellness.
Check out the posts below to learn about indoor plants and a few fun DIY project ideas using house plants.