Is There a Relation Between our Food and Mood?

These days when materialism is encroaching upon our society, psychological problems have become a major cause of health concern. According to WHO (World Health Organisation), with around 56 million people suffering from depression and 38 million from anxiety disorders, India is facing a serious mental health crisis. Mental disease is believed to be the main reason why one student commits suicide every hour in India. Depression is a state of mind that alters a person’s way of thinking, feelings and behaviour due to various chemical changes happening inside the brain. This causes distress and difficulty in the daily functioning of an individual. Pharmacotherapy and psychotherapy are the two major forms of treatments provided; however, these methods help in averting only 50% of the mental illness cases. Therefore, additional therapies and strategies are required to prevent and effectively treat mental issues. Nutritional Psychiatry Although the factors affecting mental health are complex, recent studies suggest that diet also plays an important role in psychological issues. Diet regulation is as important to psychiatry as it is to cardiology, endocrinology or gastroenterology. Due to this reason, Nutritional psychiatry is emerging as a new field. A review performed by academic members of the International Society for Nutritional Psychiatry Research states that nutritional medicine should be a mainstream element of psychiatric practice. A diet consisting of a higher percentage of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean meats, seafood, nuts, and legumes, with avoidance of processed foods, supplies your body with more nutrients that can provide enhanced resistance against the progress of mental health issues. Diet, Depression and Anxiety Recent studies have examined and established a link...

Are you always worrying? It can be Anxiety disorder!

A typical complaint from a patient suffering from anxiety disorder to a Psychologist: “Sometimes I feel very worried, tensed and anxious, however, at other times, I am calm and cool. It happens like waves. I am not able to control my mind. I am always thinking about something or the other. Worrying thoughts can strike at any moment and fill my mind with all kinds of weird feelings. Even on the most pleasant and calm days, thoughts will be racing in my head. Several worries arise in my brain like, did something go wrong? How will I manage without help? Did I hurt someone? Etc. It makes me feel tired, irritable, nervous and exhausted. I can’t sleep well at night or function properly at work.” What is anxiety? Anxiety is nothing but worrying, thinking too much or getting scared. It is our body’s natural response to some stressful situation. It’s a feeling of apprehension about what is about to come. All of us experience some anxiety in situations like going for an interview, first day of school/college, some loved one falling sick, getting hurt etc. Anxiety or stress during above situations is quiet normal and short-term. However, if your feelings of anxiety are lasting for as long as 6 months and are interfering with your daily life you may be suffering from anxiety disorder. Anxiety disorders often involve frequent episodes of intense worry and fear that may reach a peak within short time (Panic Attacks). These intense feelings of worry and fear disturb your daily life, are difficult to control and can last long. This can make you avoid...