Recipes To Prevent And Treat Minor Depression

Depression isn’t part of the normal emotional fabric. It burdens people with persistent unhappiness and an inability to derive pleasure from activities, even those that once brought joy. As opposed to “the blues,” it impairs a person’s ability to function. This debilitating illness is all too common. This illness does more than engender sadness. Depressed people often feel irritable, angry, worthless, and ashamed. Physical symptoms include increased pain, changes in appetite, and sleep disturbances. Major depression is a serious illness. Not only does it diminish the quality of life, but it raises the risk for chronic conditions such as heart disease and stroke.

1. Sunny Mediterranean Salad

How it works: One study found that women who ate a “traditional” diet (i.e., high in vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, and whole grains and low in sugar and processed foods) had lower odds of depression and anxiety. The inverse relationship was true for women who followed a “Western” diet (i.e., high in processed or fried foods, refined carbohydrates, sugary foods, and beer). People who follow a Mediterranean diet— a traditional diet that emphasizes vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, fish, and olive oil— enjoy some protection against depression. Lastly, basil is traditionally considered an uplifting and tasty herb.

  1. 1 cup (100 g) halved and pitted black olives
  2. 1 cup (100 g) halved and pitted green olives
  3. 1 cup (150 g) halved cherry tomatoes
  4. 1 cup (135 g) cubed cucumber
  5. ¼ cup (38 g) crumbled feta cheese
  6. ½ cup (60 g) crushed walnuts
  7. ½ teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  8. Freshly ground black pepper
  9. 1 tablespoon (15 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  10. ¼ cup (10 g) chopped fresh basil leaves (optional)
  • DIRECTIONS: Mix together the olives, tomatoes, cucumber, and feta in a large bowl. Toss in the walnuts, garlic, and pepper to taste. Drizzle the olive oil over the salad and give it one final toss. Top with the basil leaves, if using.

2. Good-Fat Fish

How it works: Oily fish, such as tuna, salmon, herring, and mackerel, are rich in the omega-3 fatty acids your brain needs to function properly. In susceptible people, low levels seem to increase the risk of depression.

  1. 4 salmon, tuna, or herring fillets (3 ounces, or 85 g)
  2. 4 tablespoons (60 ml) olive oil, divided
  3. Freshly ground black pepper
  4. Juice of 1 lemon
  5. 2 tablespoons (22 g) Dijon mustard
  6. Tabasco sauce
  7. 1 teaspoon (7 g) honey
  8. ¼ cup (16 g) chopped fresh dill
  9. Lemon wedges, for garnish

Brush the salmon with 1 to 2 tablespoons (15 to 30 ml) of olive oil and season with the pepper. Broil for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, so that the skin is brown and firm like meat.
In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining olive oil with the lemon juice, mustard, Tabasco sauce to taste, honey, and dill. Add pepper to taste.
Drizzle the sauce over the warm fillets and serve with lemon wedges.


3. Beautiful Crab Cakes

How it works: It’s easy to have a vitamin B12 deficiency if you don’t consume animal foods: fish, meat, poultry, and eggs. Long-term vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to anemia, nerve damage, depression, memory loss, disorientation, and dementia. Crab is high in vitamin B12. Look for stone crabs and Dungeness, which are lowest in contaminants.

  1. 16 ounces (455 g) crabmeat, flaked
  2. 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  3. 1 cup (115 g) bread crumbs
  4. ¼ cup (25 g) scallion
  5. ¼ cup (60 g) plain low-fat Greek yogurt
  6. 1 teaspoon (5 ml) fresh lemon juice
  7. 1 tablespoon (15 ml) Worcestershire sauce
  8. ½ teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  9. Freshly ground black pepper
  10. Olive oil
  • DIRECTIONS: In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients until combined. Roll and shape the mixture into eight cakes. Coat a large skillet with a small amount of olive oil and place over medium-low heat. Cook the cakes until golden brown, about 3 minutes on each side.

4. Mindful Massage

How it works: Mindfulness, by definition, helps you focus on the present moment, which can stop you from brooding. It can also help you appreciate the beauty around you. In a study involving pregnant women, mindfulness reduced symptoms of depression and facilitated maternal-infant bonding.

  1. 2 tablespoons (30 ml) unscented lotion or vegetable oil
  2. 10 to 12 drops lavender essential oil, or your favorite

In a serene setting with your favorite calming music; slowly and deliberately add the lotion to a teacup. Drop in the essential oil. Mix with a spoon or chopstick.
Dip one hand into the lotion and massage it into the opposite arm, thinking about the smooth feel of the lotion against your skin, the aroma of lavender, and the joy of the motion. When finished, pause. Appreciate your bodily sensations and the setting.
Now massage your opposite arm, then each hand, leg, and foot, focusing on the slow, soothing motion of the massage and the velvety feel of the lotion against your skin. Take an appreciative pause as you finish each body part. Finish with your face, neck, and chest. Close your eyes for a few moments, inhaling and exhaling slowly.


Lifestyle Tip

  • Get regular physical activity. a number of studies confirm that exercise reduces symptoms of depression. Find something you enjoy so much you look forward to doing it each day. You don’t need to join a gym. any physical activity counts—dance, garden, clean house, jog, walk, practice yoga, bowl, or throw a Frisbee.
  • Let the sunshine in. Go outside. Bask in the sun for 15 minutes without sunscreen. in response to the sun’s ultraviolet rays, your skin makes vitamin D, which is important for mental function and mood.
  • Make your living environment cheerful. Fill your favorite vase with cut flowers. plant flowers. Listen to music that buoys your mood (and give in to the urge to dance). Wear bright colors. For some, a bit of lipstick can brighten up more than lips.
  • Wake up and smell the coffee (or tea). This dynamic duo does more than kick-start your day. Moderate consumption of coffee (two to three cups a day) is associated with a lower risk of depression. don’t get carried away. Caffeine excess can cause anxiety, which often coexists with depression. If you’re a teetotaler, you might like to know that regular consumption of green tea (three or four cups a day) has been linked to a lower risk of depression.
  • Get enough sleep. sleep deprivation can make you irritable, moody, and more vulnerable to depression. That said, depression is associated with poor sleep. It can even be one of the first signs of depression. Either way, if you can’t sleep, talk to your doctor.

When to Call the Doctor

  • Persistent sad mood and, often, excessive crying. Irritability can accompany low mood.
  • Sleep disturbances. People may sleep more or less than usual. Either way, they feel exhausted by the day. Early morning awakenings are common.
  • Fatigue
  • Increases or decreases in appetite and consequent weight gain or loss.
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, and making decisions.
  • Feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, and guilt.
  • Suicidal thoughts and actions. A bleak outlook that life is no longer worth living and will never improve can lead people to contemplate, plan, attempt, and actually commit suicide. If you or someone you know voices ideas of suicide, take it seriously. Get immediate help.

Leave a Reply