Written by: Kat Gal
Do you feel overwhelmed with your day to day tasks? Have you lost enthusiasm and energy for your hobbies, interests, favorite activities and people close to you? Do you have trouble sleeping or sleeping to much? Are you experiencing sadness, anger and anxiety?
You may be dealing with depression.
You are not alone. 350 million people worldwide and 16 million people in the U.S. are experiencing depression. Numbers are growing. Women are twice as likely to suffer from the disease than men. It is the most common mental health reason for disability.
The Gut And Mood Connection
But did you know that your depression may be coming from your gut? That’s right. All disease begins in your gut, including your mental health issues. Your mental health is closely connected with your gut health and therefore, what you eat (and don’t eat).
Your gut is the home of approximately 100 trillion microorganisms. When it comes to your health, the balance of these microorganisms matters. If you are eating processed foods, artificial ingredients and processed sugar, living a stressful life and frequently taking antibiotics, you are feeding the bad bacteria in your gut. If your gut flora is out of balance and the bad guys are dominant, inflammation and disease happen, including depression and other mental health issues.
You are not only what you eat, but also what you absorb. If your microbiome is out of balance, you may develop a condition called leaky gut that permits undigested food and toxins into your gut stream. Leaky gut and an unbalanced gut flora leads to poor absorption, which means that your body is getting even fewer nutrients than your diet would require for a healthy system.
Poor gut health can also lead to low serotonin levels that are particularly important for your mental well-being. Your doctor’s common response to low serotonin and low mood is prescribing an anti-depressant. These medications can lead to unwanted side effects and often don't work long-term.
What if I told you that you can improve your mental health through simple dietary and lifestyle changes without medication?
Follow These 7 Steps To Improve Your Mood And Get Your Life Back Naturally
#1. Clean Up Your Diet
Eliminate or at least reduce your intake of processed foods, processed sugar, artificial ingredients, dairy and wheat. Instead, add whole food to your life. Eat a mostly plant-based whole foods diet with lots of fresh, organic greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, beans and pseudo grains.
#2. Get Juicing
Drinking green juice is the best way to add the most amount of nutrients to your system the quickest way possible. Drink at least 32 oz of green juice a day.
Exercise can boost your mental and physical health at the same time. Move your body for at least 20-30 minutes a day.
#4. Get Out Of Your Head
Meditate. It may be difficult at first. Start with only 5 minutes a day. Be patient with yourself. Soon you will notice that you feel more relaxed, have more compassion, awareness and love in your life and feel better emotionally.
#5. Be Grateful
Gratitude can raise your vibration and mood instantly. Stick to a daily gratitude practice. Write down three things you are grateful for each day. Visualize them and say them out loud.
#6. Do Something For Others
When you are feeling low, it is easy to shut down and go inwards. Doing something for others, doing small acts of kindness, volunteering and even giving small hugs can not only make others feel better, but can help you feel more purpose and joy as well.
#7. Take Daily Probiotics
Probiotic-rich foods, such as kimchi, saurkraut, kefir, kombucha and yogurt and probiotic supplements can add more good bacteria to your body, helping to re-balance your gut flora. Choose high-quality probiotics with at least 50 billion IU, such as Biotic Balance. Remember, a healthy gut = a healthy mind and a healthy body.
Are you ready to take your happiness back? Follow these 7 steps to balance your gut flora, beat depression and feel better than ever.
What steps are you taking to improve your mental health? What is your favorite probiotic-rich food? Share them in the comments section. We would love to hear from you.
And remember, we're in this together.
Kat Gál is a multi-passionate writer, world traveler, nomad, runner, and cat-person. She is a lifelong learner who lives outside of her comfort zones stretching her boundaries and discovering beauty around the world. She is a Certified Holistic Health and Life Coach who encourages others to embrace their unique authentic selves, follow their heart and find their own version of freedom in life.