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Foods To Avoid When Fighting Depression 
Though there can be hundreds of causes for chronic depression, a healthy diet can wash away the effect of depression. You need to be careful with the choice of food. The below list contains the foods that are recommended to avoid if you have depression: 
Depression - Nutrition & Sleep 
Foods To Avoid When Fighting Depression 
Though there can be hundreds of causes for chronic depression, a healthy diet can wash away the effect of depression. You need to be careful with the choice of foods. The below list contains the foods that are recommended to avoid if you have depression: 
1. Dairy Products 
Some studies indicate that the protein casein, found in dairy products, triggers inflammation and depression. Not everyone experiences this effect, but try to give up dairy products for a month and watch how you feel. Replenish calcium with spinach, oranges, apricots, and broccoli. 
However, this does not mean that you have to completely abandon these healthy products from your life. As mentioned earlier, this effect is visible only to some people. You can eat dairy products in a moderate amount. 
2. White Sugar 
Excess sugar in the body reduces protein production, which stimulates the growth of neurons and synapses. This is fraught not only with the occurrence of depression 
3. Artificial Sweeteners 
Artificial sweeteners can negatively affect our mood. When serotonin gets blocked in the brain, headaches, insomnia, and mental instability appear. 
4. Fast Food 
Can lead to depression and overeating. 
5. Alcohol 
Alcohol suppresses the function of the central nervous system, which plays a significant role in the processing of emotions. It temporarily masks how you feel but then the next morning you will often feel more depressed than before. 
6. Foods High In Sodium (Salt) 
Too much salt in the body can disrupt your nervous system and causes rapid fatigue and depression. When exposed to large amounts of salt, the immune system creates an optimal environment for the development of depression. Too much salt can also cause depression so try to maintain a healthy balance. 
7. Caffeinated Foods 
Caffeine for some can cause sleep disorders. I recommend you avoid coffee and caffeinated drinks in the afternoon maybe reduce down rather than stop straight away as you body needs to adjust. 
8. Hydrogenated Oil 
The trans fats in hydrogenated oil clog arteries and limit blood flow to the brain, leading to depression. 
9. Gluten 
Whether you are intolerant or not, gluten has an inflammatory effect on the body because it irritates the intestinal wall. This process can lead to the development of depression. Why not try not having gluten for a while and notice if this improves your depressed mood. 
10. Carbonated Drinks and Fruit Juices 
Both of these drinks are stuffed with sugar. 
Sleep Hygiene 
When we are depressed, we often feel exhausted and sleep deprived as an added punishment. Some of this is caused by you needing lots of energy to suppress your feelings unconsciously but also if your sleep has been broken over time for a number of reasons it will be making your Depression a whole lot worse. So to help, its time to sort your light out and embrace your Dark side. 
Sort Your Light Out 
Going outside in nature decreases your heart rate and reduces the stress chemicals you create when you feel anxious and depressed: in depression, you try to suppress powerful feelings, maybe you know what they are, maybe you don’t, but they create toxins in the body that make you feel unwell. 
When you are exposed to daylight you produce Serotonin a neurotransmitter in your brain that helps to regulate your mood, social behaviour, learning, understanding, memory, cardiovascular function, pain sensations, appetite, bowel movements, bladder control, sleep, and sexual desire. 
Your body also uses the serotonin gained in daylight to create melatonin a hormone that regulates your sleep/wake cycle. So, the healthier your levels of serotonin, the more likely it is that you’ll have healthy levels of melatonin too. 
Low serotonin levels contribute to your depressive symptoms and the lack of Melatonin produced as a result leads to a lack of sleep, an increase in levels of cortisol (a stress hormone) and depressive symptoms. 
So now you know why even when you don’t feel like going outside your body and mind will really thank you for it. See going outside into the light as medicine for your body and mind that you can control and self medicate with. 
Embrace your Dark Side too! 
Having had some time in the light, your body also really needs darkness as a trigger to recognise its time for bed. 
Light and especially blue light tells the brain it’s dawn – Stress already messes with your melatonin levels. And when you combine that with the blue light from your technology devices? It’s basically an anti-melatonin party. 
1. Extended periods of wakefulness enhance what’s known as the homeostatic sleep drive, increasing deep sleep. In other words, you may need to reduce the opportunity for sleep so that when you do get to bed, you achieve deep sleep. Sleep deprivation may enhance sleep depth when sufficient sleep occurs. Boost your sleep drive Avoid watching screens and try one of these instead. (Blue light blocker glasses) 
2. Follow a Circadian Rhythm - Deep sleep follows a circadian pattern with greater amounts in the early part of the night. When sleep is irregular, the disturbed timing of deep sleep may reduce it. It may be enhanced by keeping to a regular sleep-wake schedule, including on weekends, and using morning sunlight as a consistent cue to the circadian system immediately upon awakening. 
3. Water the plants 
4. Read a fun book, something relaxing and not too taxing 
5. Take a bath or a warm shower 
6. Try light Yoga stretches or Meditate 
7. Talk with your partner or a friend 
8. Listen to a sleep story on Calm/ Audible 
9. Take a night walk around the block in the fresh air 
10. Eat More Sleep-Supporting Foods & avoid late night meals. (See the info section on Food). 
11. Change the settings on your phone to “night mode,” where it minimizes blue light output but avoid your phone completely 40 minutes before bed. 
12. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule of no more than 8 hrs to avoid falling into a second sleep cycle and feel groggy when you then get up half way into it. 
13. We should be setting the thermostat to a relatively cool 16.1 degrees Celsius. 
14. Avoid napping or lying-in bed it messes with your body clock. 
15. If you have worries on your mind then write them down and then schedule in what time and day you are going to think and fix the problem and commit to not thinking about them till that time and day. 
16. Match you’re going to bed time with when it gets darker earlier 
17. Try a Bedtime Relaxation Meditation or Visualisation (there are loads of free ones on the internet 
18. We emotionally and mentally process the events of our day when we sleep as well as carry out essential body maintenance so it’s essential, we get good sleep in order to feel whole and balanced. 
19. If you have carb-heavy meals before bed, your body spends the whole time digesting your food and regulating your blood sugar instead of repairing your cells and recharging while you sleep. 
So instead try to eat at least two hours before you want to sleep if you feel hungry grab a small, healthy protein-rich snack like nuts or seeds. 
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