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Food nourishes both the body and mind, offering the nutrition required for keeping the whole self energized and functioning at its best. You might — or might not — be surprised to learn that the brain is actually the first site that receives incoming nutrients. It makes sense, since it is the organ that directs the other organs, cells, and metabolic processes.
So what happens if we're nutritionally deficient; can it affect the brain? While nutritional deficiencies do not always exhibit grand mental or psychological symptoms, lesser subclinical indications can pop up. Minor deficiencies of certain nutrients are sufficient enough to change mood and brain chemistry, especially in sensitive individuals.
Holistic medicine is an approach that addresses the whole self by incorporating nutritional, biological, genetic, emotional, and mental aspects of wellness. When dealing with mood disorders, all of these aspects must be taken into account. One angle often taken is the use of herbs like kava kava and St. John’s wort.
Some herbs are seeing a great deal of research from reputable scientific organizations, all demonstrating positive results in promoting a positive mood and mental agility. Some herbs, vitamins, and nutrients that promote mental wellness include:
Psychotherapy and conventional medical therapies are often more successful when the patient is thinking clearly and is in a positive mindset (or "mood set"). By increasing certain nutrients and utilizing natural approaches, like St. John's wort and kava kava, mental health may be improved dramatically when combined with conventional therapeutic approaches.
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is typically low in many of the nutrients our brain (and the rest of our body) requires to stay healthy. A diet high in processed carbohydrates and low in essential fatty acids is common among many people today, and this nutritional factor may be impairing the quality of the mind and body in adults, teens, and children.
Individuals do not often understand or even think about the importance nutrition plays in mental health. With many people currently overfed and undernourished, it's no wonder why we are seeing a constant bombardment of disease and mental disorders plaguing our Western world. Here's a quick overview of the nutrients that are crucial for mental health.
Neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin are necessary for transmitting electrical impulses and messages between brain cells. These essential electrical conductors are also important for keeping mood elevated. Decreased amounts in the brain can result in depression or depressive-like symptoms. Many conventional antidepressants work by promoting normal neurotransmitter levels, an action that is also attributed to St. John's wort.
Amino acids are the precursors for many neurotransmitters, and the majority of us receive all the amino acids we require from dietary protein. The three amino acids that are directly linked to mood and depression include phenylalanine, tyrosine, and tryptophan. Phenylalanine and tyrosine produce norepinephrine and tryptophan, two neurotransmitters necessary for maintaining a stable mood.
Some research has indicated that amino acid therapy may be as effective as traditional drug approaches to mental wellness, with phenylalanine and tyrosine being two of the amino acids demonstrating similar antidepressive results compared with a popular pharmaceutical. Amino acids have also been shown to reduce pain levels in the body by maintaining healthy levels of endorphins, the body's natural pain reliever.
Mental health is influenced by a multitude of factors, including diet, lifestyle, and genetics. Nutritional deficiencies related to depression and concentration issues contribute to many of the psychological diagnoses being attributed to people today, yet very little is being done to look into these root causes.
Prescribing a pill to cover up symptoms seems to be the most popular route; however, it doesn't have to be this way. If you or someone you know has some type of mental health condition, it is best to undergo a complete nutritional analysis to determine and remedy any possible underlying factors.
The information displayed above has been provided
•Dr Edward Group