Nutritional psychiatry is a field of study that focuses on the relationship between food and your mental health. It studies the effects different nutrients, vitamins, and minerals have on emotions and behaviors. There isn’t a lot of definitive research about this topic. It is difficult to study the effects of food on mental healthy because there are so many other factors that impact mental health and everyone is different.
One field of study focuses on the digestive tract. A majority of the body’s serotonin is produced in the gastrointestinal tract. Serotonin is a chemical in the brain that is associated with happiness. Serotonin production is influenced by the good bacteria in the gut. Good bacteria activates neural pathways from the gut to the brain. Those pathways are necessary for serotonin to reach the brain and have a good impact on your mood.
There wasn’t a lot of heavy research on this field of study, but there are many promising categories I found that intrigued me. I plan on doing more research in the future as the article that I found these categories on did not go into depth. One category focuses on either adding nutrients to the diet or removing toxins from the diet to improve mental health. Another category focused on how changing the body’s metabolism with diets like the Keto Diet affects mental health.
In conclusion, there is not a lot of definitive research about how food affects mental health. Despite that, I am still intrigued enough by this field that I want to do more research about how I should eat to improve my mental health. I will start with sticking to whole foods and avoiding preservatives.