FYI: depression and proteins

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FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby pd Rydia » Tue Jan 20, 2004 7:18 pm

This post talks about dieting, depression, antidepressants, and briefly, bipolar. If you're uncomfortable reading about such, don't read this. If you're going to be an ass or a spaz, go away.















As some of you know, I've started the Atkin's diet recently (to, you know, lose weight). Which means I'm eating a lot more meat nowadays (and eggs, green vegetables, cheese, etc...).

Anyhow, about half a week to a week after starting the diet, I found that I had to cut my antidepressants dose in half. (For those interested, I knew to do this because I began to have hypomanic levels of energy and self-esteem, which, for a bipole, is a sure sign that one has too high a dosage of antidepressants). So far, so good...I've had no ill effects from cutting back on my antidepressants, and indeed may need to go off them completely.

It occurred to me today that there might be a link between the diet and my overall increased mood. So I went about to see if I could find some information online, and came up with the following:

"The safe way to build up the serotonin level (a way to treat depression) is to enable the body to manufacture its own serotonin by taking the immediate precursor to serotonin [tryptophan ("Tryptophan is an essential amino acid that is found in a variety of high-protein foods...including beef, chicken, fish" [http://www.whyvitamins.com/others/amino-acids-tryptophan-5-htp.html])]...Other natural substances for depression include N-acetyl tyrosine ("An amino acid present in dietary proteins" [http://www.fsinutrition.com/products/neuro.htm]), S-adenosyl methionine (SAMe) ("SAMe (S-adenosyl- methionine) is a synthetic replication of a compound that the body makes naturally from methionine, an amino acid found in protein-rich foods." [http://www.alzheimersupport.com/library/showarticle.cfm/id/250/T/Both/]), acetyl L-carnitine ("Carnitine, or L-carnitine, is a naturally occurring substance found in...animal foods" [http://www.raysahelian.com/carnitine.html])...and most of the B-complex vitamins (found in green, leafy vegetables; meat; poulty; fish; cheese)...These supplements relieve anxiety..." [http://atkins.com/Archive/2001/12/21-364901.html]

So in other words, high protein foods are chock full of depression fighting minerals/vitamins/amino acids. Yay! :D

I know a lot of folks on this forum have to deal with depression, so I thought I'd share this little FYI.



I also found the following related information, which is fairly interesting:

"When you're feeling down—no matter why—chances are your first instinct is to reach for your favorite high carb comfort food. That food may indeed lift your spirits a bit, because eating carbohydrates can increase your level of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in depression. In the end, though, the carbs are just a temporary fix that will probably leave you worse off. Why? Because while the pleasure of eating the food may cheer you up, and you may get a slight serotonin increase, those positive effects are far outweighed by the ultimate negative effect of the carbs. All those carbs may give you a brief energy boost, but within a few hours you're likely to experience a big energy crash as your blood sugar takes a sharp swing downward. How will you feel then? Depressed, irritable, tired, unable to concentrate—and the cycle starts all over again.

"Stable Blood Sugar, Stable Mood

"What if you turned the food-mood equation around? Instead of using food to try to change your mood, what if you used food to help prevent bad moods to begin with? Controlling your carbs can be a valuable way to lift and stabilize your mood. And when you do that, you lose the food cravings that can derail your weight-loss efforts, you regain focus and you enhance your mental alertness.

"To understand why, think a bit about your blood-sugar levels. When your blood sugar jumps because you've eaten a high carbohydrate meal, your body needs to release insulin to clear all that sugar away. If you're even slightly glucose intolerant, that big sugar spike, followed by a big insulin spike, will drop your blood sugar below where it needs to be. Low blood sugar makes you feel irritable, edgy, depressed, tired, foggy—and hungry.

"But when you eat a meal low in carbs—especially one that's also rich in fiber from vegetables—your blood sugar doesn't jump. You don't go on the insulin roller-coaster ride, and you don't get the low-sugar blues a couple of hours after you eat. In addition, when you're doing Atkins, can eat a snack when you get hungry between meals. (Some people find it helpful to eat five or six small meals instead of three large ones.) That helps even out your blood-sugar levels and keeps your mood on a more even keel, and that in turn helps stop your cravings for high carb foods. That doesn't mean you'll never feel depressed again, but once you're into the controlled carb lifestyle, you're a lot more likely to reach for a healthful low carb food instead of potato chips or cookies, and avoid the insulin roller-coaster ride, which will only make things worse.

"Better Nutrition

"If you've been eating the typical American diet full of carbs or if you've been following a reduced-calorie, low-fat diet as a way to lose weight, you may well have been short-changing yourself of B vitamins, iron, selenium and essential nutrients such as omega 3 fatty acids. (In fact, a number of studies have shown that fish oil supplements can be a helpful treatment for depression.1) When you switch over to a controlled carb way of eating and enjoy a variety of foods, including plenty of nuts, vegetables and whole grains, you'll improve your nutritional profile. Whole grains and high-quality proteins will replenish your low levels of B vitamins; red meat and vegetables such as spinach will build up your iron stores; and nuts will increase your selenium levels. Similarly, all the fish, olive oil, avocados and nuts you're now eating will provide plenty of essential fatty acids." [http://atkins.com/Archive/2003/5/28-781996.html]



And:

"We have previously shown that fructose as well as lactose malabsorption were associated with signs of mental depression...Further analysis of the data show that this association was strong in females (P < 0.01), but there was no such association between carbohydrate malabsorption and early signs of depression in males. In conclusion, the data confirm that fructose malabsorption may play a role in the development of mental depression in females and additional lactose malabsorption seems to further increase the risk for development of mental depression." [http://atkins.com/Archive/2002/1/11-750186.html] <p>
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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby pd Rydia » Tue Jan 20, 2004 8:08 pm

Yes, yes it is. :D Now let us all celebrate Meat Day.

Carbos temporarily boost your mood, but protein-rich foods apparently accomplish a longer-lasting, more stable mood boost.

For me at least, actual events support this theory. <p>
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Image</center>-=- "Y'know, I've always been told that dragons are bigger. And less bi-pedal." -- Cuimacc (MovieMan)
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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby Uncle Pervy » Tue Jan 20, 2004 8:33 pm

Interesting!

So what you're saying is that meat = Happy food?


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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby pd Rydia » Tue Jan 20, 2004 8:39 pm

Salami can be made more palatable by wrapping it around cream cheese. Mmm, cream cheese.

Anyhow, depression-wise, cutting back on the carbs and eating more proteins is a good idea. However, weight-wise, one needs to be careful. If you increase your protein/fat intake, but still eat over a certain amount of carbohydrates, all that protein and fat will be stored in your body as...fat. The excess carbohydrates will also be stored as fat, and your existing stores of fat are not likely to go anywhere because your body is using carbohydrates for energy (it normally takes about a day or two for your body to shift from burning carbs to burning fat).

The deal with the Atkin's diet is that you eat so few carbohydrates, that your body goes into lipolysis -- it takes the fat and protein you eat, and immediately burns it for your daily energy...and then, most times, taps into your reserve of fat and burns some of that, too. This is why on Atkin's you can eat so much fatty foods (meat, oils, real butter, protein bars and specially made candies, etc.) and still steadily lose weight. (I guess I should not that on Atkins, you have to avoid "chemically altered, processed hydrogenated oils," like margarine and shortening).


[edit] Sugar is a carb. o.o

The only thing I know about those things you listed, Neb, and antidepressants is this: found in soy products is a phospholipid called phosphatidyl serine, another supplement that has antidepressant effects. Rice, however, is full of carbohydrates (which induces the insulin rollercoaster effect). <p>
<center>Hello, I'm Dia. I'm a dragongirl, and I bite. RAWR!
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-=- "*Today's important Lesson. Dragongirls Bite. Nekojin nip*" -- UnclePervy</p>Edited by: [url=http://pub30.ezboard.com/brpgww60462.showUserPublicProfile?gid=pdrydia>pd]&nbsp; Image at: 1/20/04 9:04 pm

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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby Raishilliah » Tue Jan 20, 2004 9:19 pm

Heh. Mayhap I should lay off the crackers then. Except the only meat about is salami and that's icky... <p>

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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby NebulaQueen » Tue Jan 20, 2004 9:34 pm

Hmn...I wonder about non-animal protein foods, such as soy beans, peanut butter, beans & rice, etc.

Especially peanut butter...I tend to find when I get carb cravings, a good substitute for me is digging into the peanut butter. I don't know why...I think it might have something to do with the sugar. <p>

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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby JoshuaDurron » Tue Jan 20, 2004 10:15 pm

I need to get my mom to read this. She loves this kind of stuff.

As for my own opinion on the meat = happy food issue... I like meat. o.o

Oh yeah, and my mom, who is also currently on the Atkins diet, says that the real reason it is used is to balance out blood chemistry and take care of the insulin balancing issues, not for weight loss. That turned out to be an unexpected side effect. Also, if you stay on the almost-no-carb part of the diet to long, you'll start putting that weight back on because your body adapts. Or something like that. However, your blood chemistry doesn't reset, I beleive...

Anyways, I've wandered into areas where I don't know what I'm talking about, so I'll shut up now! =D;; <p>

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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby Shinigori V2 » Wed Jan 21, 2004 1:16 am

My mom and sister are currently on the Atkins thing.


And I'm happy, because I love meat.


And scince meat = happy food, yay! <p>

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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby Besyanteo » Thu Jan 29, 2004 12:28 pm

... See, this makes me wish I'd tried a little harder at Atkins.

Instead I lost no weight and my carbs addiction took hold of my soul again.

:{


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Yay!

Unread postby SALSAlys » Thu Jan 29, 2004 1:50 pm

And here I thought I only loved protein 'cuz it builds muscle! Which is useful for giving high-powered glomps!

Now I found out it actually makes me HAPPY!

...heh. I think I should advise one of my friends to try this. Though he needs to GAIN weight. ^^;

Dammit, I want a steak now.


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...

Unread postby Banjooie » Thu Jan 29, 2004 4:22 pm

Dude, this seriously is teh old information :(


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Re: ...

Unread postby Uncle Pervy » Thu Jan 29, 2004 4:49 pm

It's also not widely known information.

Now let's all celebrate Meat Day.


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Re: FYI: depression and proteins

Unread postby pd Rydia » Thu Jan 29, 2004 5:19 pm

Quote:
... See, this makes me wish I'd tried a little harder at Atkins.

Instead I lost no weight and my carbs addiction took hold of my soul again.

:{


Unfortunately, Atkin's is mildly complicated. It's easy to do it wrong, especially when you're starting. :(

I was lucky, though. My Mom read the relevant information for me, and I just followed her. :D I've only had to pursue further information after about three weeks on the diet, and was able to get that from a forum. <p>
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