Nutrition and Mental Health 

According to the science of digestive disorders, the gastrointestinal tract (gut) is a second brain to the human body. Therefore, its activities and end products influence the brain’s actions. Chemicals, produced from food serve as activation signals the brain for a cascade of cells and organs regulations, that the body needs to survive. These brain activations could either be negative or positive based on the type of nutrient taken in. Probiotic, prebiotic, and symbiotic functional foods, with the ability to improve the good bacterial population of the gut, have been shown to have a positive influence on mood and mental health. This is significantly clear that a good gut may be possible to improve brain health (Appleton, 2018 ) .

A healthy gut is solely dependent on good nutrition. The impact of minerals e.g. (selenium, iron, folate), vitamins e.g. (B vitamins), and essential fats and oils e.g. (omega 3 and 6) all have been found to regulate moods (Rathod, Kale and Joshi, 2016 ). The need to consider good and functional nutrition in the enhancement of mental wellbeing is an essential action that must be pursued deliberately with an extreme sense of urgency. Most chronic diseases are associated with poor and imbalanced intake of nutrients among the current generation. Globalization and modernization have made unhealthy eating, excessive alcoholism, physical inactivity, and tobacco use a sign of good living. The rise in the incidence rate of brain-related diseases was significantly high in the subsequent years before the emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic. Anxiety and depression are common these days due to the impact of the pandemic. From losing loved ones and the inability of families to connect, just to mention a few. These have led to a dramatic impact on the worlds’ development rate amidst the rise in technological advancements and breakthroughs in medicine.

To reduce the prevalence of mental diseases, education and mentoring of people living with and without mental health are important. Convenient food is the most sort after due to its affordability. Most people are financially incapable, and some people do not know how to make simple meals. Health and wellbeing coaches must intensify education and training on the below-listed.

1. The importance of good nutrition and the impact it has on individuals.

2. How to make simple healthy foods at home.

3. How to make nutritional supplements for personal use and improved mental wellbeing.

4. How nutrition affects body image which is directly linked to mental health.

5. How good nutrition affects the quality of babies a person brings forth.

6. How to make healthy nutrient-dense snacks.

7. The need to be creative with food, by garnishing food and how a well-set eating table can improve the mental state of a person.

8. Training people on how to be financially stable so that purchasing good nutrient-dense meals will not be impossible.

9. How to prioritise nutritional goals and how important it is to human health and societal growth.

10. Teaching people positive and relevant lifestyle changes that will improve their mental state.

11. Reasons why parents must stop rewarding children with convenience foods. instead of proper nutrition-dense foods. This reward system has a direct impact. on the children’s food choices as they age, and the cycle never ends.

12. There is always a minority in the society who never get to receive any sort of help the government or from philanthropic societies decide to give to people in need. These group needs to be given the support to live a healthier life to combat the burden of nutritional disease burden of the world. Everyone must be given the chance to live life to the fullest by reducing restrictions that only deprive people of their basic rights. Everybody needs to be enthusiast about health to drive intensive education to people in all walks of life. Good nutrition and education must be made accessible.

The secret to becoming mentally strong can be achieved when our bad lifestyle habits are given up on. Life is not fair, no matter who you are. People need to be coached to accept life as it may be and to take positive steps that will change their negative situation if possible. And if not then may change the way they do things. Obstacles must not stop people from enjoying complete well-being. Helping people get rid of unhealthy beliefs can be an effective way of reducing mental related illness. There are fewer effective drugs available for the treatment of mental health and the available drugs come with greater complications not to mention the economic burden it comes with. The brain influences all aspects of well-being and with a deliberate concentration on mental health, the world will have a more happy healthier population.

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