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Foods for Fighting Depression

Foods for Fighting depression

Antidepressants and psychotherapy surely have a place in treating your depression. But incorporating a nutrient dense diet can serve to maximize any positive result in fighting depression!

Good Foods for Depression

Eat Plenty of Antioxidants

Antioxidants are the absolutely essential weapons in your fight against depression. Best antioxidant rich foods with a high ORAC scores (which measures a food's ability to fight free radicals) are:

Goji berries ORAC Score:25,000

Wild blueberries ORAC Score: 14,000

Pecans ORAC Score: 17,000

Elderberries ORAC Score: 14,000

Kidney Beans ORAC Score: 8,400

Cranberries ORAC Score: 9,500

Blackberries ORAC Score: 5,300

Blueberries have excellent antioxidant fighting power. They have an ORAC Score of 14,000. Use them in a smoothie or in oatmeal. They also make awesome pancakes!

Load Up on Lean Proteins

Proteins are super important for helping to the brain produce the mood boosting chemical serotonin.

Buy organic whenever you can, especially produce. Chemical pesticides are used in non-organic produce that may contribute to depression.

Eat Smart Carbs

Stay away from simple carbohydrates i.e. foods containing white flour and sugar. Such foods contribute to weight gain, oxidative stress, obesity, and blood sugar issues.

Instead, eat more complex carbs like brown rice, whole grain pasta, and bread, beans, and legumes. These foods are rich in fiber and protein that help keep blood sugar and mood stable.

Eat Lots of Fat

Like carbohydrates, fat has gotten a bad rap. Healthy fats doesn't cause problems. It's the bad ones like trans fats and saturated fats that cause problems, as these fats contribute to obesity, weight gain, high blood pressure and cardiovascular problems.

Have good fats like mono and poly unsaturated fats in your diet. And especially omega 3 fats.

Studies reveal that people who take diets rich in omega-3 fatty acids are less likely to be depressed.

You will get omega-3 fats from fish oil supplements.

But what about the Foods to Avoid for Depression?

Avoid consuming artificial sweeteners and processed foods. Processed foods usually are rich in sugar, salt, and rancid fats like trans fats, saturated fats and cholesterol.

Bonus Tip...

Nutrition and Depression: Soak Up That Sunshine

Sunlight doesn't exactly fall under the category of nutrition. But you'll definitely feel better after soaking up some rays!

You'll get vitamin D in sunshine which is crucial for good mood. But if you can’t get outdoors for sunshine, you can still get vitamin D in supplement form. (When shopping, look for the label saying vitamin D3, which is a natural form of vitamin D.

A light box is a good alternative of bright sunshine during the winter months.

Best Foods for Managing Depression

Nutrition plays a huge role in managing depression. So its crucial that you pick the right foods that will drive your recovery.

So where do you start? Put these foods on your shopping list...

  • apricots
  • cantaloupe
  • peaches
  • blueberries
  • grapefruit
  • kiwi
  • oranges
  • strawberries
Protein Sources:

Try to eat a variety of these foods every day to get your daily allowance of protein. This break down to 56 mg a day for men and 46 mg a day for women.
  • beans
  • lentils
  • lean, grass-fed, antibiotic and hormone free meats and animal products.
  • wild caught seafood. Avoid farm raised seafood.
  • non-gmo (genetic engineered organism) soy products
  • nuts and seeds
  • quinoa
  • brown rice
  • plant-based protein shakes
  • whey protein shakes (Look for ones that are Rsbt free)
Wild caught fatty fish like:
  • anchovy
  • mackerel
  • salmon
  • sardines
  • tuna
Incidentally, good protein sources are also rich in selenium, a mineral shown to improve mood. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), Office of Dietary Supplements, adults should aim for about 55 mcg of selenium a day.

  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • collards
  • pumpkin
  • spinach
  • sweet potato
  • peppers
  • potatoes
  • tomatoes
Choose healthy fats like olive, canola and extra virgin coconut oils.

Nuts and Seeds:
  • almonds
  • walnuts
  • cashews
  • pumpkin seeds
  • sunflower seeds


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