Your Eating Habits Are Influencing Your Mental Health
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Your Eating Habits Are Influencing Your Mental Health

The connection between what we eat and how we feel has long been acknowledged, experts continue to unveil the intricate relationship between dietary habits and mental health.

According to Dr Rohan Kumar, consultant psychiatrist, Regency Hospital, nutrient-rich foods provide essential vitamins and minerals that support brain function.

“A balanced diet helps regulate neurotransmitters, impacting mood and cognitive function. Conversely, poor nutrition may contribute to mental health issues,” he tells

The foods we choose can significantly impact our mood, energy levels, and overall mental well-being. But we can explore practical steps to foster a positive eating environment for the mind.

The gut microbiome, a community of trillions of microorganisms in the digestive system, plays a key role in producing neurotransmitters that regulate mood. A diet, rich in fibre, fermented foods, and prebiotics supports a healthy gut microbiome, potentially contributing to better mental health, according to Dr Kumar. Highly processed foods and those high in refined sugars can contribute to inflammation and negatively impact mental health. (Source: Freepik)

Here are some ways you can improve your dietary habits for stable mental health. 

  1. Nutrient-Rich Foods for Cognitive Function: Essential nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, play a vital role in maintaining optimal cognitive function. Fatty fish, nuts, seeds, leafy greens, and whole grains are examples of nutrient-dense foods that support brain health. Incorporating these into your diet provides the building blocks for neurotransmitter production and overall cognitive well-being.
  2. Balancing Blood Sugar Levels: Fluctuations in blood sugar levels can impact mood and energy levels. Opt for a balanced diet that includes complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and healthy fats to help stabilise blood sugar levels. Regular meals and snacks throughout the day can prevent energy crashes and support sustained mental clarity.
  3. Mindful Eating Practices: Cultivating mindfulness around eating habits contributes to a positive mental relationship with food. Pay attention to hunger and fullness cues, savour the flavours of your meals, and create a calm environment during mealtimes. Mindful eating encourages a healthier relationship with food and may reduce emotional eating.
  4. Limiting Processed and Sugary Foods: Highly processed foods and those high in refined sugars can contribute to inflammation and negatively impact mental health. These foods may lead to mood swings, fatigue, and increased stress levels. Minimise the intake of processed snacks, sugary beverages, and excessive sweets to support mental well-being.
  5. Hydration for Cognitive Clarity: Staying well-hydrated is essential for cognitive function. Dehydration can lead to difficulty concentrating, fatigue, and mood disturbances. Ensure an adequate intake of water throughout the day to support optimal mental performance.
  6. Moderation and Variety: Adopting a balanced approach to eating involves moderation and variety. Enjoying a diverse range of foods ensures that you obtain a spectrum of nutrients. Avoiding extreme diets and embracing a well-rounded approach contribute to sustained mental and physical health.
  7. Seeking Professional Guidance: For individuals dealing with specific mental health concerns, seeking guidance from healthcare professionals, including registered dietitians or nutritionists, can be beneficial. These experts can provide personalised advice based on individual needs and goals.

Source : Indian Express