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12 Foods to combat depression

12 Foods to combat depression

Depression is a fairly common mental disorder nowadays. According to the Ministry of Health, it is estimated that, in Latin America, 24 million people suffer from the disease. In a depressive episode the person may feel powerless, mood-stricken, uninteresting, and unwilling to do ordinary routine tasks in addition to physical symptoms such as headache and stomach pain. According to nutrologist Roberto Navarro, our brain produces substances called neurotransmitters that control innumerable brain functions. One of these neurotransmitters, serotonin, is able to give the brain a sense of well-being, regulating our mood and also giving a sense of "satiety."

Food can help produce more serotonin, boosting good mood and helping in the combat of depression, however, it is worth remembering that it does not replace the treatment of the disease, with medication intervention and therapy. "For the production of cerebral serotonin, there is a need for" raw materials "(called cofactors) that are fundamental for their synthesis, such as tryptophan (amino acid), magnesium, calcium (minerals), vitamin B6, folic acid (vitamins)." Navarro. Here are a few foods that will improve your mood and are excellent co-adjuvants to help you fight the disease.

Nut, walnuts and almonds

They are rich in selenium, a powerful agent antioxidant. According to nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti, they collaborate to improve the symptoms of depression, helping to reduce stress. Recommended daily quantities are two to three units of Brazil nuts or five units of nuts or 10 to 12 units of almonds. But you can also make a tasty mix of these oilseeds.

Skim milk and yogurt

They are great sources of calcium, a mineral that suppresses tension and depression. "Calcium helps reduce and control nervousness and irritability. It also participates in muscle contractions, heart beats and the transmission of nerve impulses and regulates blood pressure," explains nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti. It is recommended to consume 2 to 3 servings per day.


Watermelon, avocado, papaya, banana, tangerine and lemon are known as agents of good mood. "All these fruits are rich in tryptophan, an amino acid that helps in the production of serotonin," explains nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti. It is recommended to consume three to five servings of fruits every day.

Orange and apple

They are prominent because they provide folic acid, whose consumption is associated with a lower prevalence of depressive symptoms. In addition, because it is rich in vitamin C, orange promotes better functioning of the nervous system, ensures energy, helps to fight stress and prevents fatigue.

Banana and avocado

Banana is rich in carbohydrate of carbon), potassium and magnesium. It is also a source of vitamin B6, which produces energy. "The fruit lessens anxiety and helps you sleep peacefully," explains Abykeyla. As good as, avocado is another great option, and before bed. Consume two teaspoons of pure fruit (without sugar or sweetener) every day before bedtime.


This food stimulates the production of serotonin, a neurotransmitter responsible for the sensation of pleasure and well-being. To benefit from the benefits, two tablespoons of dessert a day is sufficient.


"They are a good source of thiamine and niacin (B vitamins), which contribute to good humor", points out Abykeyla Tosatti. Recommended is a unit per day at most. Those who have high cholesterol should be concerned about excess consumption, and avoid, especially the fried version.

Lean meats and fish

"Tryptophan, present in these sources of protein, helps combat depression and improves mood, as it increases the production of serotonin, which exerts a great influence on mood, as it is able to reduce sensation pain, decrease appetite, relax, create the sensation of pleasure and well-being and even induce and improve sleep, "emphasizes nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti. It recommends between one and two servings per day, mostly from fish such as tuna and salmon.

Complex carbohydrates

They help the body to absorb tryptophan and stimulate the production of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which helps reduce feelings of depression. "Carbohydrate sources of food: breads, whole grains (wheat, rice)," explains expert Abykeyla Tosatti. "A low-carbohydrate diet for several days can lead to mood swings and depression. The recommendation is 6 to 9 servings per day.

Oats and rye

Both are rich in B vitamins and vitamin E. "These nutrients are of great importance as they improve bowel function, fight anxiety and depression, "says nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti. The recommendation is at least three tablespoons full per day.

Green leaves

Studies show that a diet with high folate intake (important vitamin B complex) is associated with a lower prevalence of depressive symptoms. One of the foods rich in folate are dark green leafy vegetables (spinach, broccoli, lettuce). "Some research shows that depressed individuals may have low levels of vitamin B12, leading to decreased folate and imbalance in the metabolism of brain neurotransmitters associated with mood control," warns specialist Abykeyla Tosatti. The recommended daily intake is three to five servings per day.


It is rich in magnesium which is the second most abundant mineral in our body and plays a key role in the energy of cells. Your disability can result in a lack of energy. "Magnesium helps reduce fatigue and increase energy levels, which counteracts stress because it has natural tranquilizing properties, especially when combined with calcium," explains nutritionist Abykeyla Tosatti.

Loin with apples

Loin with apples

Ingredients 1 Loin Pork Sour (1.5 kg) 2 tablespoons ) of Margarine light Qualy 1 cup dry white wine 5 red apples, well firm 3 branches of chopped parsley - salt Illustration of loin with apples - Photo: Getty Images Preparation Remove the loin from the freezer, place it in a small baking dish and defrost the bottom of the refrigerator, still packed, for about 24 hours.


Recipe: blackberry and hibiscus tea

Recipe: blackberry and hibiscus tea

Hibiscus blackberry tea is diuretic and, as mulberry leaves can help as a hormone replacement, it is beneficial for menopausal women. The recipe is by the culinaryist Malu Lobo of the site Nutra Health in the Kitchen. Ingredients 1 tablespoon ground blackberry leaves (3 to 5 leaves) 1 tablespoon hibiscus 1 tablespoon Peruvian maca 1/2 apple with peeled and seeded chopped 800 ml filtered water How to do Heat the water until almost boiling, put all the ingredients and lower it for 10 or 15 minutes.