Read one of my old messages, dealing with eating disorders, depression, cravings, sleeplessness, and smile:
Depression and foods are a vicious cycle. Depressed people try and find rescue from foods and invariably, eat the wrong foods. Foods that taste good, most often sweet foods, foods that they crave, e.g. starches (carb craving). Sugar raises the level of a neurotransmitter called Serotonin, which we produce naturally from food. Women in particular need this so-called happiness hormone more than men, that is why they crave carbs more than men.
People with low levels of Serotonin tend to be depressed, irritable, irrational, aggressive and inattentive. They often crave carbohydrates, especially candy, baked goods and other sources of simple sugars. As a result, these people with low Serotonin levels are not only depressed, they tend to overeat and get fat.
Serotonin is produced from the amino acid Tryptophan. Many people cannot produce enough. Emotional and physical stress, as well as illness, especially digestion related disease, all interfere with the ability of the body to convert Tryptophan to Serotonin. The right carbohydrate meal stimulates the release of insulin, which helps to clear amino acids from the blood stream that compete with Tryptophan. The amino acid competitor is called Tyrosine, which stimulates your brain. Tryptophan is called a "SLEEPER", Tyrosine is called a "WALKER", this for people who have difficulties falling asleep. Allow more of this natural sleep-inducing amino acid Tryptophan to enter the brain and you manufacture more sleep-inducing substances, such as Serotonin and Melatonin. Sweet dreams my friends.
So, now you know why I do recommend eating your carb meal in the evening? But not just any old carb. Why do I strongly recommend RICE? Well, turns out that our old friend, rice, contains high levels of Tryptophan amongst the starchy foods. Rice is also low in the Glycemic scale, which means rice SLOWLY releases sugar to the blood, unlike puffed up refined grain products like breads, which flood your system with sugar. Rice is actually called a SNOOZE FOOD. Could it be that people in Asia are far more content within themselves, disciplined, able to focus and find peace within them because they eat plenty of rice? Yes, rice is the 800 lb gorilla in the starch world (another gorilla after blueberries and wild salmon). Other foods high in Tryptophan are cultured dairy and soy products, sesame seeds/sesame butter, meats, seafood, poultry, eggs, beans, lentils, nuts and some grains.
But instead of rice, you probably reach for sweet foods. What happens if you eat sweet foods (click on the link)? The blood sugar and Serotonin levels shoot up, you get a short high but then sugar levels plunge and you spiral deeper into depression, making you reach for the potato chips or chocolate again. As I said, vicious cycle. And now you understand why you are a “WALKER” at night, when people on a balanced and healthy diet sleep.
On your night walk you might reach into the fridge and gorge on other foods that taste good, like breaded Omega-6 rich chicken breasts fried in Kentucky chicken's rancid Omega-6 fats. Cheap and great for a naughty late night snack???? but dramatically reducing your essential Omega-3 levels further, which is widely known to create depression.
Sure, there are foods that help to reduce or even eliminate depression. First and foremost, Omega-3 rich foods such as flax seed oil and wild salmon. Followed closely are Vitamin B rich foods like liver. For me, liver is a culinary delight, served with plenty of onions, garlic and other delicious herbs. You probably find LIVER revolting, no way, instead of eating liver you rather suffer from depression???? Liver is the last 800 lb gorilla of the animal protein world that I will mention here and have mentioned throughout my messages in the past.
But hold on, there are little pills called B-vitamin supplements. Needless to say you take them already. So why have they not helped you? The important B-vitamins need to be bound to protein in order to be properly absorbed, like in liver, also in beef, lamb and other protein foods including fermented soy products. Ever wondered why your urine was so yellow after you take your B supplements. Your urine is so yellow because all your expensive B-vitamins are flushed down the drain. That’s why they put thousands upon thousands of recommended daily intake B’s in your pills (or have not even established values), in the hope that some actually hang around in your body. That is why your urine is not yellow when you eat liver.
There are other foods, which contain “Mood-Stabilizing Compounds”. Lithium is classified as an anti-maniac drug. So-called Lithium Charm cereal is now available without a prescription at your local pharmacy and a best-seller at the California State Hospital for the Mentally Insane Cafeteria. But beware of processed foods and find natural food sources for Lithium. Always remember you can rarely overdose from food.
Lecithin is another mood stabilizing substance
Other amino acids play an important role as Mood-Stabilizing Compounds, such as L-Taurine, Methionine, L-Tryptophan and 5-Hydroxy-Tryptophan. GABA is usually classified as an amino acid, although it actually serves as a neurotransmitter (there are more GABA sites in the brain than for any of the other neurotransmitters such as Dopamine or Serotonin). GABA is basically a inhibitory transmitter, keeping the brain and body from going into "overdrive." Other substances are L-Phenylalynine and DL-Phenylalynine. Phenylethylamine, is also present in chocolate and marijuana. The body also creates greater amounts when you are "in love". A deficiency in many people suffering from manic-depressives may lead to an unhappy feeling similar to that which "normal" people feel when they are heartbroken. Now you know why these 2 substances are associated with happy feelings.
Before you rush off to buy supplements that contain the substances that I mentioned here, remember: Good foods or a balanced diet is the most powerful healer.
So much for a little education in how to treat depression with nutrition, why you crave carbs, why you might be overweight and why you walk around at night.