Womens Health

Sleep, Diet and Depression

Haven't gotten a good night's sleep in a while?  Here's a reason to make sure you get your much needed rest.  Lack of sleep can cause havoc with your emotions, which in turn can cause depression or an anxiety disorder.

Been spending too much time at the snack machine or are addicted to your morning, mid-morning, afternoon, and evening cups of coffee? Your diet can have a direct affect on your emotional and psychological well-being. The wrong diet could be a contributing factor in your depression.

In order to prevent the negative affects of depression and anxiety disorder and avert the onset of major depression, make sure you're getting enough sleep and are keeping a well balanced diet.

Can sleep affect depression?

Sleep related depression can be a vicious cycle.  Depression kicks in after numerous sleepless nights have caused your brain to become less reactive, which can cause all kinds of emotional imbalances.  When depressed, many people suffer from insomnia, which in turn  contributes to continued sleep related depression.  Studies have shown that treating insomnia may help to minimize, and possibly prevent depression in sleep deprived people.

How much sleep do you need?

While every individual is different, and sleep needs may vary from person to person, the recommended average amount of sleep required is eight hours a night.  This varies from person to person.  If you do feel tired or drowsy during the day, it is probably a sign that you have not slept enough the previous night. A pregnant woman requires more sleep, and a woman undergoing menopause may  experience difficulties with sleep.  If you are constantly tired and are getting the requisite hours of sleep each night, seek medical attention to rule out a possible sleep disorder.

Can your diet affect depression?

Many nutrients in the foods that we eat affect our moods.  Limiting your intake of necessary vitamins and minerals can help contribute to depression.  Caffeine and sugar give a person a quick high, making them feel better temporarily, but help contribute to feeling down after the effects wear off.  People need to prevent their blood sugar levels from getting too low.

Make sure your diet is well balanced, and that you stay away from alcohol and drugs.  Consult a healthy living guide to ensure that you are getting the foods and nutrients you need.  Exercise is also very helpful in getting your body active. It can help you to get out of a slump, and will also help you sleep better!

Good sleep habits and good nutrition can help prevent the onset of or limit the effects of depression.

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