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Eating raw fruits and vegetables could boost your mental health, suggests new research finding carried out by the University of Otago, New Zealand. The raw produce could be more beneficial than cooked, canned and processed foods. In this article, you will learn about the raw fruits and vegetables best for mental health.
The research also suggests that in what way the raw produce was prepared and consumed, the benefits should also be taken into consideration, which is especially true for mental health.
The study was done on young adults because they have the lowest consumption of fruits and vegetables and are at a high risk for mental health disorders.
Participants were surveyed on their consumption of raw, and cooked fruits and vegetables as well as their positive and negative mental health, lifestyle and demographic factors, which could affect mental health with issues like sleep, exercise, unhealthy diet, chronic health conditions and gender.
The result of the study was found to be that eating raw fruits and vegetables was associated with fewer depressive symptoms, higher life satisfaction, higher positive mood, and a feeling of being engaged in your work and daily life.
Let's have a look at the top 10 foods for mental health.
Eating carrots will improve your mental health and decrease your stress levels. Carrots are high in beta-carotene, which is a powerful antioxidant, that gets converted into vitamin A in the body to help maintain healthy skin. The beta-carotene in carrots is linked to better mental health. This has a positive effect in the proper brain functioning. Apart from this, carrots are rich in antioxidants that protect the cells from free radical damage, improves immune system function, maintains eye health, and prevents the risk of heart disease.
Bananas are also very good for mental health because they produce chemicals that promote good mental health. They are high in potassium, which helps the brain transmit messages. This fruit might be the world's most perfect brain food by supplying nutrients which are essential for proper neurological functioning. Bananas help the brain by regulating moods and appetite while also supporting cognitive functions like focus and memory.
Apple peel and the flesh of it is known to promote good mental health. Apple juice may have potential benefits for age-related mental decline. It helps in reducing harmful reactive oxygen species in the brain tissues and minimizes mental decline. Apples may also help preserve acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that can decline with age, and low levels of acetylcholine are linked to Alzheimer's disease.
Dark leafy greens like spinach is high in brain-friendly folate. Spinach is known to improve mental ability and short-term memory. Deficiency in folate has been linked with higher rates of depression, fatigue and insomnia. Eating boiled spinach daily will help in processing information more quickly and improve your memory. Eat at least a cup of spinach per day.
Grapefruit is a citrus fruit known for its sweet and sour taste. It is rich in nutrients, and antioxidants that are known for promoting mental health. Research has found that grapefruit is also a good source of folate or vitamin B9, which is crucial for brain function and for production of genetic material such as DNA and RNA.
Green-leafy vegetables like lettuce may be good for your brain health. It will help in lowering mental decline. As you age, your brain cells can become inflamed and can struggle to communicate with each other. So, eating lettuce daily may keep your brain be 11 years younger as well as prevent dementia. Lettuce is low in sodium, saturated fat and cholesterol. It is an excellent source of thiamine, vitamin B6, iron, potassium, etc.
7. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, mandarins, grapefruit, pomelo, etc., are good for improving mental health. The flavonoids present in citrus fruits may help ward off neurodegenerative diseases, like Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. These flavonoids also have anti-inflammatory capabilities that are thought to help protect against the chain of events that cause the nervous system to deteriorate. Citrus fruits improve brain function and thus protect the brain from neurodegenerative disorders.
8. Fresh Berries
Berries like blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, etc., are known for boosting brain health. Blueberries top the list for being the best brain food. They contain antioxidants that help protect your bodies from disease and age-related disorders. This super fruit can boost cognitive function and improve memory, even in old age. Daily consumption of blueberries has been found to slow memory impairments and motor coordination.
Cucumber is a refreshing summer food. It contains an anti-inflammatory flavonol called fisetin, that appears to play a major role in brain health. Cucumbers not only help in improving your memory and protecting your nerve cells from age-related disorder, but also prevents progressive memory and learning impairments.
10. Kiwi Fruit
Kiwi fruit contains high concentration of copper, which is especially beneficial for children, as it supports healthy development in infants. Kiwi fruit also helps in bone growth and brain development in young adults. It also assists in the formation of red blood cells and builds a stronger immunity.
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