Three Foods That Might Be Making Your Depression Worse
I guess I'm a glutton for punishment. Not only do I struggle with being an emotional eater, but when I'm down in the pits I tend to reach for things like chips and fried foods. I always thought that eating those things nudged me out of my funk, but it turns out they're actually sucking me in deeper.
If like me, you're an emotional eater or someone who eats to ignore your symptoms of anxiety or depression, there are three kinds of foods that aren't bringing you the comfort you think they are and in fact, they're foods you should turn away from.
Ah, this is such an awful blanket statement, isn't it? While people like you and I tend to grab a bag of chips and scarf it down to feel better, we might actually be doing more harm to our emotions. In an article from Everyday Health, Dr. Carolyn Dean, medical director of the Nutritional Magnesium Association explained that food with low or no nutritional value could increase your depression because there are no proper nutrients to balance out our brain chemicals.
When you toss back a drink filled with artificial sweeteners, it might taste delicious and make you feel good at the moment, but those artificial sweeteners actually play with your mood. Author Therese J. Borchard sat down with Psych Today and explained, "Aspartame is bad stuff. Especially if you are prone to depression. It blocks the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin and causes mood dips, headaches, and insomnia…If you really need a soda fix, go for the fully leaded. The refined sugar, while not health food, is better for you than the fake kind."
If you think that French fries, chicken fingers, and fried mozzarella sticks are foods that are filling your emotional gaps, you're wrong. Very wrong. All of these fatty foods might even launch you into a deeper depression. So if you've got to have fried food, what should you reach for? Researcher Almudena Sanchez-Villegas who conducts studies about how our brains react to fatty foods explained to Web MD that foods cooked in olive oil are a better for us, "The participants with an olive oil consumption higher than 20 grams a day (about 0.7 ounces) had a 30% lower risk of depression than those without consumption or with a very low consumption of olive oil."