The Covid pandemic, which the world and our country have been trying to fight for the last year, triggers anxiety and anxiety, while also causing a feeling of exhaustion and intense burnout.
However, just as our diet and the foods we consume are of great importance in keeping our immunity against Covid-19 infection strong, it is possible to benefit from some of the nutrients offered by nature to strengthen our psychology, that is, our mental health. Acıbadem Kozyatağı Hospital Nutrition and Diet Specialist Nur Ecem Baydı Ozman said, “It is in our hands to keep our mood high with some foods that are good for being exhausted during the pandemic period. Good and bad mood levels are controlled by dopamine and serotonin levels in the body. Oxytocin and endorphin hormones are also known to play a role in a person's good mood. For this reason, in addition to a healthy diet, it is beneficial to consume these foods regularly, which can increase our spiritual energy by affecting hormones. " says. Nutrition and Diet Specialist Nur Ecem Baydı Ozman explained 10 foods effective against burnout and made important warnings and suggestions.
Dark green leafy vegetables
Dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach and chard contribute to your daily magnesium intake with the magnesium contained in it. Magnesium mineral, which plays a role in the production of serotonin and is necessary for the optimal functioning of the oxytocin hormone, is abundant in these vegetables. In addition, folic acid, whose low levels are associated with depression, are also abundant in these vegetables.
Fatty fish such as salmon and mackerel are rich in essential fatty acids EPA and DHA. These essential oils are associated with lower levels of depression and must be taken with food since they are not synthesized in the body. Consuming these fish 1-2 times a week can reduce the risk of depression.
Dark chocolate contains caffeine and N-acylethanolamine, which are known to improve mood. Dark chocolate is a healthier option compared to milk chocolate, because it contains more intense flavonoids that contribute to the improvement of mood and also contains less sugar. However, since it is a food with a high sugar content, it is beneficial for healthy people not to consume more than 2-3 grams per day 10-15 square meters. People with diabetes or hypoglycemia should consult the nutritionist regarding the amount and type.
Studies show an association between healthy gut bacteria and lower levels of depression. In addition, a significant amount of serotonin is produced by healthy bacteria in the gut. In this sense, regular consumption of fermented products such as yoghurt and kefir can contribute to the formation of good mood by increasing the number of beneficial bacteria in the intestine.
The B group vitamins in its content improve the mood of the person by supporting the production of serotonin, dopamine and some other substances that play a role in improving the mood. Since the lack of folic acid in its content is also associated with depression, legumes, which are a good source of folic acid, can help improve mood.
Red meat, eggs, chicken, turkey
Tryptophan, which plays a role in the secretion of serotonin hormone known as the hormone of happiness, is an essential amino acid that must be taken from outside. It is found in abundance in animal foods such as red meat, eggs and chicken. In this sense, consuming 1 egg in the morning and choosing protein sources such as red meat or turkey at one meal can contribute to improving the mood.
Banana also has a high tryptophan content, which plays a role in the secretion of serotonin. If you do not have diabetes or kidney disease, consuming 1 small banana a day can help you relax.
Foods such as walnuts, almonds, cashews and nuts contain healthy fats and protein. Tryptophan, which plays a role in the secretion of serotonin, is found in high amounts in the content of these foods. Although it is not known which amounts affect the mood to what extent, it is beneficial to consume these intense calorie foods with a number such as 3 walnuts or 8-10 raw almonds / hazelnuts per day.
Studies have shown that people who eat fiber at breakfast have higher energy and better mood. Thanks to the high fiber content of oats, it prevents blood sugar fluctuations and related mood changes. In addition, B group vitamins and folic acid in its content also contribute to the formation of good mood in the person.
Coffee increases the effectiveness of dopamine and norepinephrine, which improve mood in the person. It is possible to see the same effect in both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee. The phenolic compounds found in coffee are thought to improve the mood. Healthy people can consume 1-2 cups of coffee a day. In order not to exceed the safe caffeine dose, it is useful to limit other caffeine-containing beverages such as green tea and black tea when coffee is consumed.
Make healthy meal plans!
Nutrition and Diet Specialist Nur Ecem Baydı Ozman said, “In addition to all these, the feeling of losing control of what you eat or what you cannot control during the pandemic process can also cause a negative mood. Plan to regain control over your diet. Make daily or weekly healthy meal plans and shop accordingly. Planning will help you both eat healthily and deal with the negative emotions of being out of control. In addition, it has been shown that physical activity, both sports and non-sports, is associated with happiness and good mood. In this sense, besides paying attention to your diet, try to be as active as possible. " says.