It’s mental health awareness month and your mental health matters. The way we feel on a day-to-day basis influences every aspect of our lives. Depression rates have tripled in the U.S since the pandemic hit, and with the current war in Europe, that rate continues to increase. Although there can be much chaos going on around us, whether in our personal lives or the world, it’s important to keep a level head.
Bringing yourself back to a balanced mood can be a challenge at times, with many contributing factors like emotional trauma, loss, or even prolonged stress, which can make you feel hopeless and unmotivated to seek help. If you know someone in this situation or even if it’s you, there is nothing to be ashamed of. We all need a hand sometimes and seeking help is an admirable thing to do.
This article is to offer assistance and shed some light on 5 vitamins that improve mood and feelings of well-being.
Also called the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D can be absorbed through the skin in abundance on beautiful sunny days. It’s great for maintaining healthy bones and the immune system but also works wonders on your mood. Deficiency in this fat-soluble vitamin has been linked to S.A.D (seasonal affective disorder) and even depression in some cases.
There have been studies on the link between vitamin d and depression, which suggests that many clinically depressed people do suffer from low levels of vitamin D. It works by activating genes in the blood that release dopamine and serotonin, the happy hormones! Supplementing with Vitamin D, especially in the winter months, can make a huge impact on feelings of well-being. Talk to your doctor about the right dosage for you and invest in a quality vitamin D supplement.
Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid that is not produced in the body, hence the word “essential”. It must be obtained through food or supplementation and its lack thereof has been linked to inflammation, reduced cognitive function, and mood imbalance. Omega 3 is an amazing vitamin to improve mood as its anti-inflammatory effects have been studied in Omega 3’s fight against mood disorders. The study suggests that omega 3 passes the blood-brain barrier and interacts with mood-related chemicals in the brain which helps to stabilize mood. It has also been studied in its fight against other mood disorders like postpartum depression, bipolar disorder, and attention deficit disorder (ADD). Noor’s Omega Ultra is a potent fish oil that offers a high-quality omega 3 source. Other sources include freshwater fish, avocados, nuts, and flaxseeds.
Did you know that symptoms of vitamin C deficiency include depression and fatigue? This popular vitamin isn’t usually linked with mood imbalance but its presence in the body does affect the way we feel. Studies have shown that vitamin C is one of the best vitamins for anxiety and its accessibility makes it easy for us to avoid deficiency. Noor’s Vitamin C is a delicious orange-flavored chewable tablet offering 500mg of this antioxidant. Foods that are rich in vitamin C include citrus fruits, strawberries, mangoes, sweet peppers, and kale.
A mineral that is often overlooked, zinc is vital for the male reproductive system, smooth skin, and most importantly, mental wellness! It plays a key role in neural function and evidence of deficiency is common amongst those who suffer from depression and even psychosis. Studies suggest that zinc deficiency plays a key role in the onset of mental disorders and supplementation amongst those with impaired absorption, dietary lack or overconsumption of alcohol can avoid such problems. Food sources include red meat, poultry, seafood, pumpkin seeds, sea moss, and dairy.
Magnesium is a calming mineral. It relaxes the muscles in the body and brings ease to spasms and headaches. More importantly, magnesium plays a key role in the function of the central nervous system. Studies have shown magnesium’s usefulness in psychiatric and neurological diseases. Magnesium is said to have an antidepressant effect and is attributed to its many positive interactions with brain function, particularly neuron health. It is a common mineral found in most forms such as powder, liquid, and capsule and is also rich in foods like leafy greens, nuts and seeds, avocados and legumes.
Dealing with Stress
Stress is not always a bad thing. There can be a build-up of stress from the anticipation of your wedding day or prepping for a big meeting that can change your life forever. On the other hand, you can be drowning in the stress of debt or going through a breakup. No matter what type of stress you’re experiencing, its biological process doesn’t change. Longstanding stress and anxiety weaken the nervous system and adrenal glands. It can cause digestive issues, high blood pressure, diabetes, and even extreme fatigue, anxiety, and sadness. Coupling mood-enhancing vitamins with effective stress management and relaxation techniques can make a huge difference in overall mood and feelings of well-being.
All in all, your mood today doesn’t have to be your mood tomorrow. We all have bad days, sad days, and even depressing ones and that’s normal. What we should be aware of is suffering from long-standing stress, anxiety, or depression and not reaching out for help. Depression, in particular, should not be ignored and vitamins to help treat depression should be addressed right away. Energy levels should also be addressed as mental anguish can cause fatigue and extreme tiredness.
The health of the mind trickles down to the health of our body as it influences what we eat, our level of motivation, and the life-changing choices we are sometimes faced with. Taking vitamins to improve mood, exercising to relieve stress, and seeking out a therapist to deal with past trauma are the keys to living a wholesome and happy life.