Last updated on May 1st, 2023 at 10:43 pm
Have you taken a supplement lately? Are you aware of the mental health benefits that many supplements have?
Supplements are substances that are ingested orally in addition to food to provide nutrients that are not present in sufficient amounts in one’s current diet. They’re meant to boost nutritional intake and promote overall health.
Supplements are utilized for a variety of reasons. These include maintaining a healthy weight, preventing chronic diseases, and treating specific ailments. They can also help you stay healthy by providing more energy, aiding digestion, or enabling you to sleep better.
Protein powders, vitamin D, creatine, and weight loss pills are just a few supplements. They can be classified as Vitamins, Minerals, Herbal supplements, or Nutritional supplements.
Some people believe that vitamins are solely for physical well-being when, in fact, anything we put into our bodies impacts our physical and mental health. For instance, supplements can help with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues.
The truth is that supplements can positively and negatively impact mental health benefits, depending on the person. For example, some supplements improve mood while others are linked to an increased risk of depression.
The Benefits of Supplements for Brain Health
Supplements are not just for athletes or those who want to improve their physical performance but also for those who want to improve their mental performance. That being said, one of the most common reasons people take supplements is the desire to improve brain health.
Supplements can be vital for healthy brain function and are an easy way to ensure you get enough of the vitamins and minerals your brain needs. Supplements can help with brain development during pregnancy and childhood but are especially beneficial as you age. They can help to protect your brain cells from damage, preserve memory, regulate moods, and much more. Supplements’ mental health benefits can also help boost cognitive function.
But what are the best supplements? It’s hard to say because everyone’s needs are different. Nonetheless, many supplements can help improve your brain health: Omega-3, Vitamin D, Caffeine, and Nootropics. Nootropics are a class of drugs that can enhance cognitive function. They work by increasing neurotransmitters in the brain, like dopamine and serotonin. The most popular nootropic is caffeine, which is found in coffee, tea, and chocolate. They can also be found naturally in Ginkgo biloba.
What Supplements Can Help with Depression?
Depression is a serious mental health condition that can significantly impact your life. It can lead to feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and worthlessness. Depression also affects physical health by increasing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
The good news is that depression is treatable with counseling, medication, or other treatments. You may also need to make some lifestyle changes, such as getting more exercise, eating better, or reducing stress in your life. In addition, you may need to take vitamin supplements to address any nutritional deficiencies that could be contributing to the problem.
Depression is a mental disorder that a vitamin deficiency can sometimes trigger; so consider these supplements that might help:
A. Omega 3 fatty acids:
They are important for overall brain health.
B. Vitamin D:
It is essential for the absorption of calcium and magnesium, which are important for mood regulation.
C. B Vitamins:
These vitamins are necessary to produce serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine. The deficiency of these vitamins may lead to depression.
The Best Supplements for Anxiety & Stress Reduction
In today’s fast-paced and competitive world, it is becoming increasingly difficult for people to maintain a healthy lifestyle. As a result, many people develop mental health concerns such as anxiety and stress. While occasional stress is an inevitable part of life, anxiety can be crippling. It can make sleeping, concentrating, and functioning difficult in everyday life. Fortunately, many ways to reduce these anxiety and stress levels, including supplements.
Taking certain supplements can help reduce anxiety and stress by altering the chemical balance in the brain. Here are some of the best supplements for combatting anxiety:
L-Theanine is an amino acid that is found in green tea. It works by crossing the blood-brain barrier and boosting the production of GABA, a neurotransmitter shown to decrease anxiety levels.
2. Fish Oil
A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that people who took fish oil supplements for 12 weeks had lower anxiety levels than those who did not.
Thus, fish oil is a supplement that can be taken to reduce anxiety levels. It is an essential fatty acid, which means it cannot be produced by the body and must be obtained through diet. The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil are important for brain health because they help with neurotransmitter production and cell membrane fluidity.
3. CBD Oil
CBD oils are made out of cannabis plants that have high CBD content. Though this supplement is not legal in all states, CBD oil is an effective treatment for anxiety, depression, pain and inflammation, sleep disorders like insomnia, and many other conditions.
Now you know how supplements can affect mental health. However, supplements are not a cure for depression. They can only help by alleviating some symptoms and improving brain function.
Supplements are always available at any local grocery store or pharmacy, even without a doctor’s prescription. Nonetheless, the most important thing to remember when taking supplements is that they should be taken cautiously. Individuals should consult their physician before taking supplements for the first time. As well, it’s important to note that supplements are not a substitute for a healthy, balanced diet.
Rick Kaselj MS, is a leading kinesiologist and injury specialist as well as co-creator of the best-selling Unlock Your Hip Flexors program. Rick creates exercise programs that help people heal injuries and eliminate pain, so they can go back to living a full, active, healthy life.