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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

1/28/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

The right food can help in mild cases of depression.

Depression can arrive with the gray clouds of winter, and is exacerbated with being cooped up indoors for weeks at a time. For this reason, many people cast about for ways to cure their depression, often by consulting a physician and obtaining a prescription to treat their condition. However, there are some foods that people can enjoy to help ease mild depression.

It's hard to be sad when you have a stack of chocolate to enjoy.

It's hard to be sad when you have a stack of chocolate to enjoy.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

1/28/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: depression, food, superfoods, salmon, herring, chocolate, popcorn, whole grains


CHICAGO, IL (Catholic Online) - As the first real snows fall over Chicago, gray skies and cold conditions have returned, at least for awhile. For some, crippling depression sets in. In these cases, a doctor visit is strongly advised, but what about mild cases, where folks are bored and depressed, but not enough to warrant medication.

Well, that's where food can help. Just like ingesting pills which contain chemicals to normalize brain activity and body function, food can also do the same thing. And while medications can provide strong, controlled dosages in significant cases, for those with relatively mild depression can still combat their blues with the right food, as a first step, or as a supplement to a doctor's care.

According to doctors, fish is a popular choice, specifically herring and salmon. Herring has vitamin D. Patients who lack vitamin D in their blood have a greater incidence of mood disorders. Salmon is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which can directly combat depression in some people.

Oysters are another seafood that's rich in magnesium, and known to act as a stress reliever.

For those who don't like seafood, spinach is a great choice. Spinach is rich in folic acid, which helps the brain to maintain high levels of serotonin, which makes you feel good. Even better, paring the spinach with some salmon works great.

Dark chocolate is also a popular choice because - well, it's chocolate. What more is there to say? Dark chocolate causes the brain to release endorphins, so it's no wonder chocolate was a favorite of the Maya kings.

Whole grain snacks, including popcorn, are also known for being both enjoyable to eat and to contain vital, brain-healthy nutrients. Of course, if you try the whole grain approach, especially popcorn, try to avoid excessive butter or salt.

In all cases, it should be remembered that only a licensed professional can diagnose depression and simply eating the right foods may not always be an acceptable substitute for the blues. If a person believes they may be suffering from depression, they should speak with their doctor.

And blues or no, all of the above are just plain good for you anyway, and should be a part of the average diet.

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