Taking care of your diet and maintaining healthy habits is also part of mental health care. To highlight the importance of diet for health, scientific and health professionals have published a healthy eating guide for psychiatrists and patients, with recommendations and recipes that can help maintain physical and mental health. This article summarizes his top 10 tips.
It is common to have unhealthy habits, for example, the consumption of toxic substances such as tobacco and alcohol and foods rich in ultra-processed and sugars, refined flours, and saturated fats. These foods, although delicious, are poor nutritionally. Healthy nutrition is key to leading a healthy lifestyle and protecting mental health.
In addition, taking care of yourself must consider the diet and accompany it with frequent physical activity and an appropriate rest time, at least 7 hours a day.
On the other hand, having contact with nature has also helped to have a healthy mind. A walk in the forest, the mountain, or the sea once or twice a week is recommended. Closeness to these natural environments improves overall and mental health and helps keep stress at bay.
Regarding food, these are 10 tips to take care of your mental health.
- Eat dinner soon. Whenever possible, it is preferable to have dinner when it is still daylight, at 7:00 p.m. in winter and 8:00 p.m. in summer. It is recommended not to wait until 10:00 pm for dinner.
- Light dinner. It is advisable to prepare dinners rich in vegetables, healthy fats, and carbohydrates from vegetables, roots, and tubers, such as carrots, beets, sweet potatoes, potatoes, broccoli, onion, etc.
- Include vegetables in the three main meals of the day. The most common is to eat vegetables only in one of the meals and always as a garnish. To improve health, you should make up your 3 daily meals with at least 50% of greens and vegetables.
- Avoid pastries. Candy, cookies, cakes, and chocolate are harmful due to their excess sugar, low-quality fat content, and refined flours. Combining all these factors increases the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular, inflammatory, and degenerative diseases.
- Increase the consumption of healthy fats. Try to introduce these fats in the day to day through foods such as organic eggs, avocado, bluefish, nuts, seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, flax, chia, sesame, etc.), butter from pastured cows, oils of first cold pressing of olive, coconut, and sunflower.
- Eat foods rich in probiotics. An example is fermented foods such as unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, miso, tamari, fresh sauerkraut, goat or sheep kefir or water kefir, kombucha tea, etc.
- Eat foods rich in fiber every day. Foods rich in fiber or prebiotics feed the intestine bacteria and ensure proper intestinal transit. Vegetables and greens, seeds such as flax or chia, cooked and cooled potatoes, etc., are included in this group.
- Fill your pantry with aromatic herbs and spices. The more, the better; use both fresh and dried. Using these ingredients in stews, salads, creams, sauces, meats, fish can improve the dishes’ flavor and health.
- Choose small wild bluefish, such as sardines, anchovies, mackerel, horse mackerel, or bonito from the north.
- Find 100% whole wheat bread. If you consume bread, it should be 100% whole wheat flour and cereals such as Kamut, small spelled, or buckwheat. If possible slow fermentation with sourdough. Try not to consume it daily and always in small amounts.
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