• Call Now: 405.341.3554
  • Connect

Edmond Family Counseling Articles

Articles by the Counselors at Edmond Family Counseling

A Diet for Your Brain??

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Monica Whitten, Edmond Family Counseling Practicum Student

Most of us think about our physical health quite a bit, whether it’s wishing you were a few pounds lighter, thinking about your blood pressure, trying to fix chronic tummy trouble, etc. In an attempt to remedy these concerns, many people resort to a variety of diets and exercise regimes, especially those that claim by “adding this ingredient”, “avoiding this food group”, or “doing this once a day” will produce near-instant dieting success. Obviously, plans that promise significant weight loss are among the most common choices of diet, but have you ever thought about picking a diet that’s best for your brain? What would that diet even look like? Of the millions of diets out there, is there one that can do it all?

It’s fairly common knowledge now that a great deal of our immune system resides within in our gut. The good bacteria that live in our stomachs digest the food we consume and in return help us fight off foreign pathogens. But they don’t just fend off the bugs that are responsible for colds and flus. They also prevent toxins and other invaders from entering the blood stream and reaching the brain where, shockingly, they can affect our mood and even impact our psychological health. In short, these tiny helpers provide a barrier of defense between us and potential inflammatory diseases, physical illnesses, and yes, even mental health problems such as anxiety and depression.

So if proper diet and exercise can help us feel better physically, why do we neglect these areas when we need a boost mentally? Both mental and psychological processes have been shown to improve with the right nutrition and activity levels. Of all the popular diets today, which ones are best for our brains? Scott C. Anderson from Psychology Today recommends several important areas of nutrition for beefing up your intestinal defenses. Diets that are high in fiber, omega-3’s, and fermented foods (such as yogurt and kombucha) and low in sugars and refined grains are more likely to produce a happy healthy brain. Additionally, a vitamin-rich diet full of folate, calcium, magnesium, and B-vitamins as well as vitamins E, C, and K can also produce awesome brain-boosting effects.

But with all of these recommendations, is it possible to find a brand-name (i.e., “Pinterest-able”) diet that checks all of these boxes? Let us take a look at some of the most popular diets today.

THE KETOGENIC DIET- Low-Carb diets are no new trend. Having been around for decades, the key difference between traditional low-carb diets and the trendy ketogenic diet is strictly the number of carbs. The high protein and fats recommended in this diet means there are plenty of opportunities to get the omega-3 fatty acids that make your brain happy. However, it does discourage some higher-carb fruits and veggies that may provide some of your essential vitamins, as well as nearly eliminating fiber in the form of whole grains. This doesn’t mean that those aiming for better mental health should avoid keto, but just bear in mind that alterations should be made, such as adding extra high-fiber veggies or taking a multi-vitamin.

THE PALEO DIET- The premise of this diet is to adhere to what we were “meant” to eat based on the diets of our hunter-gatherer ancestors. Paleo diets are rich in veggies, lean proteins, fruits, seeds, and nuts while discouraging sugar, dairy, and grains. While this diet rocks at providing vitamins and minerals, adjustments are recommended to account for the lack of dairy and whole grains that can provide fiber, calcium, and probiotics. In addition to some mood-boosting benefits, Paleo may also help reduce blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and promote weight loss.

MEDITERRANEAN DIET- Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner! Of all the popular diets today, the Mediterranean diet is earning the praises of nutritionists and psychologists alike. Emphasizing the traditional diets of Greece, Spain, and southern Italy, the Mediterranean diet emphasizes fish, olive oil, nuts, fruits and veggies, while still allowing for smaller amounts of whole grains, dairy, and yes, even wine! This diet is essentially exploding with vitamins, omega-3’s, and fiber while eliminating processed sugars and grains. In addition to keeping your mind sharp and your mood bright, this diet can also seriously lower the risk of heart disease, inflammatory illnesses, and can help you shed a few pounds in the process.

It is possible to eat a diet that promotes both physical and mental wellbeing, as well as potentially checking off a few other health goals along the way. It is important to be cautious of any diet recommending avoiding entire food groups, and supplementing with multivitamins and probiotics when needed. By making small adjustments to your favorite weight loss plan, you can gain a better mood and sharper brain in addition to losing a few inches off the waist.

 



Comments
Post has no comments.
Post a Comment



Captcha Image

Trackback Link
http://edmondfamilycounseling.org/BlogRetrieve.aspx?BlogID=17125&PostID=1531982&A=Trackback
Trackbacks
Post has no trackbacks.

Recent Posts


Tags

Food Allergies Enabling Adult Children Political bias Back to School Teenage Development Prom safety MEDITERRANEAN DIET What is domestic violence Ben Carson Dating Alcohol high school Summer Annie Sullivan Depression Teens and Smartphones Microagression Why did the system fail Tumblr Role Models Retirement Planning World Health Organization Adult Children Teen Jobs list Edmond Family Counseling Substance Abuse Family Roles Bong Is therapy forever Edmond Character Council National Drug Threat Assessment Summary Bias and memory Panic Grandparent Initiative Waxing The Golden Years Teen Parenting THE PALEO DIET Negative Thinking How to recognize domestic violence Millenials Sheila Stinnett Parenting Teenagers Conflict Summer time parenting Grounded Hope Michael Jackson Facebook HB 2249 Prevention Teen Suicide privilege Holidays Changing Problem Behavior Freshman Year diet Mild-Depression Disability Dr. Rhonda Patrick Gun violence and mental health Edmond Municipal Court bucket list What Really Matters United States Drug Enforcement Agency Mental Health 13 Reasons Why NOT Hanna Baker Mayme White Miller self-sabotage Teen Safety Parenting through Divorce How to manage anxiety Normalcy Co-Parenting Micro-aggression Peers Relationships Heroin Crisis Suicide Prevention Recommendations Aggregated News for Teens History Edmond drug use Depression and social media Young Adults New year’s resolution What to do when you are laid off Joshua and Rebecca Weigel Suicide Early Treatment of Depression Developmentally appropriate strategies for grief counseling Captain of Your Ship Butane Honey Oil College Age Children Sexual Abuse Setting Boundaries for Your Teen Self-Esteem What Matters Most Program Links between unemployment and depression How many sessions do I need Chores for Teens Siblings in Conflict Supersurvivors Consequences Community Suicide Prevention Programs Butane Hask Oil Edmond 5 Love Languages Heroin in the Suburbs non-verbal communication Disciplining Teens personal growth Twitter Positive Illusions Isolation in teens The Amazing Race Oklahoma Department of Human Services Social anxiety Organization Confidentiality Summer Plans for Teens Entitlement Syndrome Divorce with minor children Suicide Prevention for Teens Terrorism and children The Miracle Worker Addiction Divorce School The Butterfly Circus Teenagers Speaker Listener Technique How to detect signs of depression Misconceptions of Smoking Marijuana Chad McCoy Anxiety Teenage perception of drug use How long should counseling take Impact of Suicide Holiday stress Domestic violence resources Great Depression Panic attacks Audrey Woods Parenting and Cell Phones Self Investment Anger Stress Jackie Shaw James Dobson Golden Child Ridley Scott John Goetz Darcy McConnell Character Development Communicating with your child Presidential debate Newsletter Marriage counseling Drug Use Positive Reinforcement Retirement Opiods Divorce Communication Movies for Teens Procrastination Donald Miller ADA Legalization of Marijuana Trauma Eating Disorder Instagram GirlStrong Nutrition and stress Communicating with your teen Choices Andy Weir Social Media Child Abuse Schedule 1 Drug Drugs parenting college age kids David Feldman Prom guidelines for teens How to control panic attacks Positive Thinking Sanjay Gupta Death Teens Use of Technology Teens and Time Management Reading Decision-Making School Anxiety Dr. Ben Carson Personality Test Drug Abuse Teenage Boys Childhood depression Support Group Americans with Disabilities Act Bias Teen Drug Use HK pen Child Development responsibility College Campus Prescription Drugs Medical Use of Marijuana in Oklahoma Setting Boundaries with Adult Children Affluenza 13 Reasons Why Jay Asher Independent Living Family Theory Emotions Help for panic and anxiety Fear Call of Duty Limitations of counseling Boundaries Panic Disorder Spanking Twenty Somethings Managing substance abuse Risk taking Will counseling work quickly Al McCormick Parenting with purpose Elizabeth Loftus Tetra-Amelia Syndrome How do children process trauma Lee Daniel Kravetz Learning Working Parents Fidget Spinners Marijuana 710 Emotional Development College Transitions How to talk to your kids about terrorism How common are panic attacks fads Apps for Teens Strong Willed Child Technology ADHD goals Unemployment and depression Discipline Oklahoma Statute on Marijuana Girl Strong Funding Snapchat Therapy Learning Disabilites Gender Roles DIY Marriage counseling The Martian Book Family Systems Theory Drinking in high school Bullying Parkland Shooter Co-Parenting Class Marriage Wax Happiness College Scapegoating THE KETOGENIC DIET Grandparenting Unemployment School When Teens Should Get a Cell Phone The Martian Movie Parent peer pressure Children Seniors Goal Setting Helen Keller Codependency Underage Drinking Time Management Brain Research Teens and cell phones Culture gadgets Oklahoma drug use Belinda Crosier Prom How prevalent is domestic violence Quinton Ellis brain Political Correctness Feldman and Kravetz Detox Diet Parenting Communication techniques for couples Exercise treatment for depression spring Self Image Grandparents as parents Cell Phones Disasters AARP Amanda Percival

Archive

Call Us Now!