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Food and Mood: Plant-Based Foods to Improve Relationships

CONTRIBUTORS

It is essential to keep a balance between your mental health and relationships. Disability and mental illness often come hand-in-hand. Whatever the nature of your condition is, you're likely feeling inferior because you're trying to overcome the obstacles. Feeling inferior means the wake of every morning feeling defective and broken inside and out.

 

Sometimes the anxiety reaches its peak, and you cannot breathe; you can only hide. Mental illness can cause stress, which can lead to gastrointestinal disorders. We can feel everything that we are emotionally experiencing because we are that attached to it.

 

Mental illness can affect people at different levels; some people have more will power and a positive support system. A positive support system is not someone who enables you to make bad choices. Enablers are a negative influence; they are often those you see on the intervention television show helping addicts feed their disease.

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Why Plant-Based Foods Matter for Mood

 

At one point in my life, I was destructive, and I destroyed every relationship I had. While consuming 14 daily prescriptions did not help my mental and physical illnesses, I quickly realized that food affected my mood.

 

Growing up, I had no concept of what healthy foods were; I became accustomed to eating foods that came from a can, box, or some package because that is all I knew. Consuming these harmful foods added problems to my relationships. I was cold, impulsive, and reckless, which deflected people further away from me.

 

You can test the waters and see how food affects your mood. Go eat some cake or McDonald's. Ten minutes after eating, deeply examine how you emotionally and physically feel. You will likely feel empty in the search for more, which often leads to eating more. When your body is eating foods containing no nutritional plant-based value, there is a lack of nutrients; therefore, hunger is triggered, leading to obesity.

How to Shop for Plant-Based Foods

 

When shopping for healthy foods, it is best practice to stick with the store's outer rings and avoid buying anything in the middle because it is processed. If you need something, in particular, that is considered processed, you are likely to find it online cheaper anyway. Ensure when shopping that you are in the mindset of buying only what you need to reduce unnecessary costs and avoid foods that affects your mood.

Food, Mood, and Anti-Aging

 

There are chemical contaminants in our food and water supplies that cause disease over time. These harmful foods can also contribute to various skin diseases that advance aging processes. If you want to retain a youthful appearance, it is essential to consume at least 80 percent of plant-based foods in your overall diet.

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After seven to thirty days of incorporating plant-based foods into your diet, you should begin noticing reduced feelings of mental stress. You will likely see an improvement in your relationships.

 

When you nourish your body with healthy foods, you become an entirely new person. You learn how not to take things personally, and you can better relate to those you care about.

 

When your body and mind are polluted, you can often be portrayed as one-sided because that is how you are feeling. A form of self-victimization is having a lack of realization that it is not all about you.

 

Take the time to read through the food labels and familiarize yourself with trustworthy brands that do not include toxic ingredients. High-fructose corn syrup is among the most harmful ingredient that you will often find in products that can lead to diabetes. Natural ingredients and or flavors are typically not transparent.

 

Milk, cheese, hotdogs, and bacon are foods that affected my mental health the most. These are highly processed and unhealthy foods that may advance mental and physical disease.

 

If you consume meat and fish, I recommend purchasing USDA certified organic meats and wild-caught sockeye salmon. Avoid buying farmed fish because the waters in which they are raised are polluted with fish fecal matter.

Different Types of Tools to Improve Mental Health

 

There are various natural tools we can utilize to improve our mental health while incorporating plant-based foods to improve your mood. One of my favorites is Calm, the number one mobile app for sleep and meditation. Another great tool to consider is Sound Machines for improved sleep.

 

Using a few drops of essential oils in a burning candle or an air diffusor are effective ways to reap the mental healing benefits. There are also diffusers you can use as a necklace or in your car while driving.

 

Here are some healthy herbs to experiment with if your mental health is failing you:

 

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Maca Root

 

Maca Root is one of my favorite healing herbs that aid in mental health improvement. Maca root has flavonoids, which can help improve your mental well-being and mood by reducing sadness and anxiety, especially in menopausal women.

Some other herbal remedies I love using are Saffron, St. John's wort, and Geranium oil.

I encourage that you do your research and learn about the different ways you can use healing remedies that are best fit for you.

 

References

 

HealthLine. (2020). 9 Benefits of Maca Root.

Maca Team. (2020). Maca for Stress and Anxiety. 

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Cynthia Cherise Murphy

Cynthia Cherise Murphy

Cynthia is a craniofacial disability activist and graduate student finishing a second Master’s degree in Public Health at Purdue University. She has overcome many chronic health conditions caused by Treacher Collins Syndrome, a genetic birth defect that affects the bones, muscles, and soft tissues of the face and skull. To date, she’s undergone 16+ reconstructive plastic surgeries. Cynthia is now pursuing a Ph.D. in Business Administration.

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