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Video Doctor: Mental Health Tips

Eat a More Healthy Diet

What you eat affects the chemicals in your brain which in turn influence your moods, energy level, food cravings, stress levels, and even your sleep habits.

Here are some suggestions for making sure you are eating a healthy diet:

  • Make sure every meal contains some foods rich in whole grains.
  • Cut back on foods containing sugar including desserts, sugared cereals, candy, and sugar-sweetened beverages. Instead, snack on fresh fruits and whole-grain foods. This will also be helpful if you have put on some weight since developing PTSD.
  • Try to cut back on coffee and other caffeinated beverages including tea, chocolate, cocoa, and colas.
  • Try to eat more fish and low-fat dairy products, and aim for a diet high in fresh vegetables and fruits.
  • Don’t skip breakfast but aim for three meals a day plus healthy snacks.
  • It’s a good idea to set the table and decide on regular mealtimes and then stick with them.
  • Snack on nutrient-dense foods such as peanut butter and small amounts of nuts.
  • Keep in mind that if alcohol and/or drugs are a problem for you, you might be depriving yourself of adequate nutrition, so these tips would be particularly important for you.
  • Don’t try to make too many changes to your diet all at once. Just start with some small changes in the right direction.
  • Talk with your doctor, dietician, or other healthcare expert about tailoring your diet to address any specific problems you may have, like food allergies or hypoglycemia, that may be related to your PTSD.


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