Food impacts mood in two important ways.
1) Food: a building block of the brain
First, the food we eat is used as building blocks in our brain. One example is omega-3 fatty acid, which comes from fish, nuts and green vegetables. This ingredient coats and protects brain cells and makes up 30% of the brain. If the brain doesn’t get enough, people have higher rates of depression, bipolar disorder and irritability.
Food impacts brain growth in other ways as well. For example, a diet that is low in sugar and fat (especially saturated and trans fats) can improve brain growth in ways that help prevent mood disorders.
Click here to read more about the effects certain foods have on the brain.
2) Mood: a regulator of appetite and metabolic health
Mood disorders impact the hormone-system, which is how the brain communicates with the body. This system regulates appetite, metabolism and physical health. When it becomes unbalanced by mood, people may crave foods like fats and sugars. The imbalance in stress hormones may contribute to physical illnesses like obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, and high cholesterol.
This cycle of mood, hormones and appetite can leave people feeling overwhelmed and out of control. We help people identify simple steps in their diet that can gradually turn the cycle of appetite around and restore balance and health to their metabolism.
Eli Lilly (a pharmaceutical company) offers a free nutrition planning program to help prevent weight gain on medications.
The Harvard School of Public Health has an excellent guide to nutrition online.