Healthy Eating for a Healthy Mind!

We are what we eat!  There are no truer words spoken than these.  Most people know that eating well improves physical health, but it is also crucial to our psychological health.

Healthy eating may not cure or prevent severe mental health problems, but it does play a vital role, helping in the recovery of not only physical but also mental health problems and improving the lives of people suffering from problems of the mind.

Doctors have for a long time stressed on the fact that under-nutrition can harm mental health and aggravate or promote diseases such as anorexia nervosa, dementia etc.

It is important to meet all the nutritional needs by following certain golden rules:

  • Eat 3 meals a day with 2 or 4 snacks in between.
  • A variety of food should be eaten.
  • Fish is good for health and should be eaten twice a week.
  • Eat three portions of dairy foods per day.
  • Eat a minimum of five pieces of vegetables and fruits per day.
  • Do not add salt to food.
  • Substitute fresh food to processed foods.
  • Drink at least 2 liters of fluid per day.
  • Reduce consumption of high sugar and high fat foods.
  • Exercise at least for 30 minutes each day.

While the above will help you with your nutritional needs for the mind and body, there are some nutrients that are considered extremely important and play a major role in keeping our minds healthy.

It is said that there may be a link between a healthy mind and intake of essential fatty acids; especially attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), schizophrenia and depression.  A poor diet may not cause these conditions, but it will aid in their development.  An increase in the intake of essential fatty acids by eating more oily fish, green leafy vegetables, linseeds, walnuts and walnut oil, rapeseed oil is said to keep our minds fresh and healthy.

Since people with mental health problems are more prone to developing physical health issues, such as cancer, coronary heart disease and obesity, it is important to make simple changes to lifestyle and diet.

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