Eating well for your mental health
Our mental health is affected by many different factors—some of which we can’t change. The food we eat is one thing that we can take control of when optimising out mental health. The RYH plan has been designed to include the right balance of nutrients to help you to do this.
Eat the right foods and fuel your brain
Your brain needs a constant supply of sugar (glucose) to function. Skipping meals can lead to low sugar levels, which can leave you feeling tired and irritable.
Eating regularly and including foods which are high in fibre and protein can help to sustain your sugar levels, keeping your brain fuelled throughout the day.
Eating protein at every meal also provides your brain with tryptophan, which is a natural mood booster. Protein-rich foods include:
- Lean meat, poultry and fish
- Dairy products
- Nuts and seeds
- Beans and legumes
- Soy products such as tofu.
Adopt a Mediterranean-style diet
Having a Mediterranean-style diet has been shown to benefit our mental health; eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, nuts, fish and olive oil is associated with better mental health scores.
The UK government suggest you should aim to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables per day, RYH enables you to eat on average of 12 varieties of fruit and veg each day spread over 10 portions!
Eat wholegrains carbohydrates like quinoa, buckwheat and millet and opt for healthy fats such as olive oil, oily fish and nuts.
Oily fish such as mackerel, herrings, sardines and salmon are thought to reduce depressive symptoms. Try to include them in your diet at least twice a week.
Choosing the right types of drinks is also important for maintaining good mental health. During the RYH plan we suggest you cut out caffeine and alcoholic, but this is not forever, when you start to feel better remember the 80:20 approach!
Staying hydrated can help with alertness and mood. It’s recommended that men drink around 2 L water and women 1.5 L water each day.
RYH offers you:
- 4 weeks of easy, affordable and varied meals, tailored to a range of dietary requirements, with vegetarian and vegan options, as well the option to avoid a range of allergens
- A lifestyle change – much more sustainable than fad diets – as well as detailed explanations so you understand the changes you’re making, increasing the likelihood of long-term success
- Long-term support: a welcoming and supportive RYH community to help you continue your journey, as well as plenty of advice for keeping your gut healthy after the 4 weeks
- The ability to sleep better, feel more energised, boost your immune system and overall wellbeing