It’s unfortunate to know that there are millions of people who struggle with depression, anxiety and mood disorders all over the world today. Although there are numerous prescription medicines and therapies that can help to cure these conditions, these usually have side effects and are often not that effective. Because of this, some of those who are struggling with mood disorders are looking for lifestyle changes that can help to address their feelings of depression and anxiety. New research has shown that a keto diet can do a lot to help boost your mood.
How A Keto Diet Can Boost Your Mood
The modern diet of high carbohydrate foods, low unhealthy fats and eating sugary snacks between meals has coincided with an increase in depression, anxiety and mental health disorders as well as the more commonly known problems of obesity and diabetes.
According to Dr Josh Axe, if you regularly feel hungry, tired, shaky, or have headaches and mood swings in between meals, there’s a good chance you’re not eating enough fat and/or over-consuming carbohydrates and sugar.
Related reading: Best Fats To Eat On A Low Carb Diet
There may be plenty of medications out there that can help to alleviate depression and anxiety but these medications often come with unpleasant side effects and do not always do much to improve the condition.
When you’re in a state of ketosis, the effect would be similar to the effects of some anti-depressive medications. These medications work by affecting certain brain chemicals (neurotransmitters|). Ketosis has a similar effect helping to boost your mood by regulating the feel good mood neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin.
Although the study was done on rats researchers found that that high level of ketones can help to cure anxiety. And as you know, anxiety is sometimes the reason behind our mood swings. Controlling anxiety can somehow help to improve mood stability.
How Keto Diet Helps Depression
Aside from anxiety, another common mood disorder in the world is depression. In fact, this condition affects millions of people and is seen as the leading cause of suicide. According to some studies, a ketogenic diet can help in treating depression.
According to a scientific study headed by scientists from the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and the University of Granada, eating commercial baked goods (cakes, croissants, doughnuts, etc.) and fast food (hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza) is linked to depression.
Researchers would often use animals in studying the effects of depression treatments through the Posolt model. This model measures the effects that depression has on animals, including its symptoms, such as despair and fatigue. This is necessary since animals don’t have the ability to report their mood.
It has been found that the rats that were fed with the keto diet were more active and have shown less of the behaviors linked to depression. In fact, the effects of the ketogenic diet are similar to the effect of antidepressant medications. It’s not known how this exactly works but many researchers believe that depression could be due to the overactivity of certain parts of the brain. Since ketosis works by slowing down the neurons in your body, this may be the reason why this diet is an effective treatment of depression.
Additional Mental Health Benefits of Keto
The ketogenic lifestyle has also been shown to treat a lot of the less common mental disorders including Alzheimer’s , Parkinson’s Disease and ADHD.
Laboratory rats that have ADHD have been put in a keto diet on a trial and it was found that the rats have shown a decrease in the hyperactivity they had formerly displayed. They have also increased their ability to pay attention to certain tasks and they did not exhibit a mental fog or increased anxiety that’s often common in medications used to treat ADHD. The rats returned to their former level of behaviors and activity as soon as they were put back on the traditional diet that’s high in carbohydrates.
The ketogenic diet has also been used as an experimental treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. Some studies show that the Alzheimer’s disease is due to the body’s inability to take up glucose in the brain cells of the elderly people. Feeding these brain cells with ketones provide an alternative source of fuel that they could burn more readily and could reduce the effect of the condition.
The Bottom Line
Although there are still a lot of things that needed to be researched when it comes to the effects of the keto diet on boosting your mood and other brain functions, the research to date seems to be promising. So if you want to boost your mood while losing weight at the same time, why not give the the ketogenic diet a try?
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