Food, Mood and Death
Surprising, yet not
What you put into your body is such a critical component of mood and stress management. While there has been plenty of studies and information shared about stress and substance abuse, there hasn’t been as much about food consumption.
Additionally, when pandemic stress was at its height, meditation and mindfulness seemed to rule all of the headlines. Well, maybe it’s time for them to share with whole, non-processed foods.
There is a reason chips, cookies, fried foods is called ‘junk food’—because it’s no good for you. In a study called ‘Global Burden of Disease’ by IHME, they found that eating food lacking in nutrition causes 11 million deaths per year. Tobacco usage causes 8 million deaths per year.
Most of us think about cutting out the junk food when you want to improve your body. But in another groundbreaking study, improving the quality of food intake can also impact mood and depression.
The Food and Mood Centre in Australia is a one-of-a-kind research organization working to make strides in Nutritional Psychology. Please listen to the podcast How Food Can Improve Your Mood
with Felicia Jacka, the Centre’s Director, to learn more about food’s impact on mental health.
Here is a summary of the primary takeaways:
- Gut health or your microbiome plays a key role in mental health.
- Eating whole, unprocessed, healthy foods great improves your microbiome.
- In one study, participants who ate well for 3 months experienced significant decreases in depression over others.
I am not even addressing the tip of the iceberg in this area with this journal. I’m hoping to pique your curiosity to learn more as this has done for me. I have been a follower of a whole food lifestyle for quite some time but had no idea about the impact on your moods and mental health.
So, when you’re stressed and time-pressured and reaching for the chips, STOP! Reach for the apple instead.