December 10, 2023

Below we share a list of superfoods you can add to your diet for better overall health and to reduce risk of SAD.

Following a healthy diet in winter can help reduce the risk of seasonal affective disorder

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that is related to changes in seasons, typically occurring during the fall and winter months when there is less sunlight. It is characterized by symptoms such as low mood, lack of energy, oversleeping, and increased appetite.

Following a healthy diet in winter can help reduce the risk of seasonal affective disorder to some extent. A well-balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and essential fatty acids provides the necessary nutrients for optimal brain function. Incorporating foods high in vitamin D, such as fatty fish, eggs, and fortified dairy products, is particularly important as sunlight exposure, the primary source of vitamin D, is reduced during the winter.

Superfoods are nutrient-dense foods that are believed to have significant health benefits. They are typically rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Examples of superfoods include berries, leafy greens, fatty fish, nuts, seeds, and certain types of beans. In this article, we share a list of superfoods you can add to your diet for better overall health and to reduce risk of SAD.

These foods will help reduce your risk of SAD during winter:

1. Spinach

Rich in magnesium, spinach can be eaten raw in salads or cooked in soups, stews, or sautés to combat seasonal affective disorder (SAD).

2. Salmon

High in omega-3 fatty acids, eating grilled or baked salmon can help boost mood and fight off SAD symptoms.

3. Sweet potatoes

Packed with vitamin A and fibre, sweet potatoes can be roasted, mashed, or made into soups to promote mental well-being during winter.

4. Oranges

The vitamin C in oranges helps boost the immune system and fight off SAD. They can be eaten as a snack, squeezed into juice, or incorporated into salads.

5. Walnuts

These nuts are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids and can be added to salads, oatmeal, or eaten as a quick snack to enhance mood and brain function.

6. Dark chocolate

The antioxidants in dark chocolate help release endorphins and improve mood. Eating a small piece as a treat can provide a natural mood booster.

7. Beets

Beets are high in folate and betaine, which promote neurotransmitter production. They can be roasted, juiced, or grated in salads to combat SAD symptoms.

8. Greek yogurt

Packed with probiotics, calcium, and vitamin D, Greek yogurt can boost gut health and improve overall mood. It can be eaten plain or incorporated into smoothies and breakfast bowls.

9. Turmeric

This spice contains curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties and can boost brain health. It can be added to curries, soups, or smoothies for a warming and mood-enhancing effect.

10. Garlic

Rich in sulphur compounds, garlic can boost the immune system and improve mood. It can be added to various dishes like roasted vegetables, stir-fries, or used in salad dressings.

While consuming superfoods alone cannot cure or prevent seasonal affective disorder completely, including them as part of a healthy diet can contribute to overall well-being.

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for a qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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