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Addressing Inflammation & Mental Health
Sometimes, it is not easy to know if you are just feeling down or if you have depression. Part of the reason for this confusion is that it is difficult to have an objective assessment of a person’s mental health as it is up to you to report and rate your symptoms. Scientists have been searching and have discovered that measurable, observable inflammation in the brain is common across many mental health conditions.
Inflammation is your body’s response to injury, irritation, or infection. It’s your body’s natural response and a normal part of the healing process. While some inflammation is normal, chronic high inflammation has negative impacts on central nervous system function including your mood and mental health.
Therefore, it is important to pay attention to what is happening in your body and consider the fact that inflammation is a possible cause when you are struggling with mood changes. Increased inflammation may occur in depression as well as bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, personality disorder, and schizophrenia.
Luckily, you can help reduce inflammation by consuming antioxidant-rich foods. Here are some suggestions for anti-inflammatory foods to help with your anxiety, mood changes, and depression:
- Berries including açai, blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries
- Mushrooms including oysters, enokis, shiitakes, honey browns, and white buttons
- Salmon, Anchovies, Sardines, Herring, Mackerel
- Dark chocolate and cocoa
- Bell peppers
- Chili peppers
- Chia seeds
- Green tea
Below are some simple suggestions for incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into your everyday diet:
• Strawberries, avocado, kale, and apple smoothie
• Oatmeal with berries and little dark chocolate nibs
• Lentils with brown rice and kale
• Grilled salmon with broccoli
• Fresh berry fruit salad
• Apple and a piece of dark chocolate
• Chia seed pudding
• Avocado toast
Be sure to choose foods that help to reduce or balance inflammation in the body and brain. Avoid or limit the intake of omega-6 fats (hydrogenated oils), caffeine, sugar, and alcohol.
In addition to the above, adding the following supplements may help ward off inflammation and support your mental health:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin E
- Fish Oil (Omega 3 fatty acids)
When in doubt, contact one of our knowledgeable pharmacists at Community Clinical Pharmacy. We are here to offer you solutions and assist you in making informed decisions about your health. Contact us with comments, questions, or pharmacy related topics you’d like to know more about. And, as always, stay healthy!
Here to Help
If you have any questions, or would like to learn more about your options when it comes to hormone replacement, please call Community Clinical Pharmacy and we can consult with you and your physician to find the best solution.
We serve the East Valley Metro Area including Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert, and surrounding areas.
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