Role of micronutrients in improving mental health

Role of micronutrients in improving mental health

Mental health is a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realize their abilities, learn and work well, and contribute to their community. According to the World Health Organization’s World Mental Health Report, published in June 2022, out of a billion people living with a mental disorder in 2019, 15% of working-age adults had a disorder. mental. In the first year of the pandemic, the global prevalence of anxiety and depression increased by 25%. Along with seeking professional help, experts have also focused on lifestyle modifications to deal with the giant health crisis in mental, cognitive and emotional areas. (Also read: Mental Health Tips: The Relationship Between Healthy Eating and the Brain )

From prescribing activities such as yoga and meditation to ground one’s thoughts, to reducing overuse of gadgets, and even improving diet to help nourish one’s body from within, suggestions for improving mental health were numerous. However, an often overlooked link to mental health is the role of micronutrients in maintaining and improving mental health. Time and time again, research has shown links between diet quality and potential nutritional deficiencies and mental health.

Evidence shows that nutrient-based prescriptions could aid in the management of mental disorders at the individual and population level. Studies show that many nutrients have a clear link to brain health, including omega-3s, B vitamins (especially folate and vitamin B12), choline, iron, zinc, magnesium, S-adenosyl methionine (SAMe), vitamin D and amino acids. acids.

In a conversation with HT Lifestyle, Dr. Vivek Srivastav, Senior Vice President of Zeon Lifesciences, suggested five micronutrients to make sure you get enough of, as part of their overall journey to high mental health.

1. Vitamin D

Vitamin D is thought to regulate central nervous system processes, irregularities in which have been linked to depression. In people with depression, vitamin D supplementation may reduce depressive symptoms. According to India’s National Mental Health Survey 2015-2016, one in 20 Indians suffers from depression. This number likely increased significantly after COVID-19.

2. Vitamin C

Vitamin C is great for your body, but it’s just as good for the brain. Vitamin C deprivation can lead to a decrease in key neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin in the brain. Adding vitamin C to your diet can improve or reverse symptoms of anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder.

3. Vitamin B

B vitamins are often known for their psychotropic properties. Symptoms of a B12 deficiency can include fatigue and poor memory. Low levels of B12 and other B vitamins such as vitamin B6 and folate may be linked to depression. Supplementation with B vitamins could have a positive effect on cognitive function and improve minor aspects related to mental health.

4. Zinc

In addition to boosting immune function, zinc also has a big impact on our brain function and emotions. Few people know about zinc’s crucial function in neurotransmission and brain cell membrane integrity. People deficient in zinc may experience emotional instability and have difficulty dealing with stress. It has been linked to a variety of mental and emotional illnesses, including attention problems, sleepless nights, anxiety and depression.

5. Omega-3

This nutrient is essential for preventing brain aging and preserving cognitive functions. It is one of the nutrients considered important for brain development in children. Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids can also impact behavior, personality, and attention. Omega-3 fatty acids have long been known for their effects on heart health, but are now showing promise as a treatment for mood disorders, including bipolar disorder, severe depression, and postpartum depression. Research suggests omega-3s can help mild to major depression and even schizophrenia.

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