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Re: Nutrition

Posted by Adam on November 30, 1999, at 10:27:58

In reply to Nutrition, posted by Noa on November 29, 1999, at 16:32:49

I've been curious about supplements and diet for quite some time. There was a period of about six
months that I swore off antidepressants entirely, and even tried St. John's Wort for about three months.
SJW didn't do much of anything, I don't think, to improve my mood, nor has taking loads of vitamin B
complex or anything else. I haven't tried megadosing on omega-3 fatty acids or SAMe, but my feeling is
none of those could do for mood what an MAOI has done for me.

What I do know about diet is when I eat lots of junk I feel disgusting, and when I take the time to
make a healthy meal, I feel good physically, and also mentally, a little, as it is a bit of an
accomplishment these days for me to motivate and prepare something nice. A week ago I steamed some
brown rice, threw on some (also lightly steamed) fresh asparagus and some white fish I cooked for the
minimum time in the oven. Squeezed some lemon juice on top. That was it. Easy, pretty tasty, and I
just felt good eating it. I get the same sort of feeling out of sushi, like it's cleaning my system
out by virtue of its freshness and lightness. I know there's nothing to that but perception, but
perception can go a long way. Plus I'm a total wasabi addict. I sometimes wonder if eating really
spicy food couldn't be a bit of a mood booster just because of the endorphin rush; all those vanilloids,
capsacin and the like, could be doing something.

Get a rice steamer. A decent one costs less than 50 bucks, you just measure out some rice, throw some
water in, go away, and a half hour later, voila, perfect rice. You can also toss in vegetables, whatever,
and it always comes out just right. If you get the right rice, combine with some good veggies, add the
low-fat protein source of your choice, season with hot or tangy can eat pretty well, and
it's easy and cheap. I don't know what I'd do without the thing, as I really dislike complicated cooking.
Reminds me too much of work, maybe :).

> I am moderately aware of the basics in nutrition, but don't know much about some of the nitty gritty of how different nutritional elements affect depression, etc. Sometimes I am curious about whether eating better or taking supplements would help. My nutrition has been neglected a lot in recent years, because I have not cooked for myself at all, and have relied on processed foods, carry out, etc. Now, the extreme of thinking like my friend who told me I was depressed because all I had eaten in 3 days was a pizza, seems outlandish to me, but in the big picture, he has a point. Over the long run, my neglect of proper eating habits might be making my depression worse.
> So I bought a book. It is a bit overwhelming, too much info to take in. But I am picking up some things that pique my curiosity about myself. First, I think I don't get enough B vitamins, because I don't eat meat or poultry, and only sometimes do I eat fish. Second, I definitely have not gotten enough fresh greens, etc. and am probably low on Folic Acid. I also wonder about other deficincies-zinc, fish oil, for instance. I don't feel ready to go the supplement route, and think I should probably just start changing my eating as much as possible to include more fresh fruits, vegies, etc.
> There are some conflicting issues--on being, fish is not recommended for people with water retention, because of the iodine. But it is recommended for depression, because of the fish oil.
> Some basics I can start with are reducing the caffiene, I think, and eating more fresh vegies. I also need to eat less fat, of course, as my cholesterol is too high.
> Has anyone out there had experience in getting a handle on their nutrition, and does it help with depression, anxiety, etc? It is a bit overwhelming to read this book (by an MD and a nutritionist) because they are like many natural healing folks that suggest so many supplemental herbs, etc. and are into the idea of lots of food allergies, which I don't think is so farfetched, but is probably more than I can handle right now. Should I consult a professional? Are there ways to test whether you are deficient in something? Has anyone worked with a psychiatrist who knows something about nutrition, and works with patients about that?




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