What are some of the ways diet and nutrition can affect mental health?
Diet and nutrition can affect mental health in a number of ways. When we have poor nutrition, this can greatly affect our body’s composition. Nutrient deficiencies have been associated with mental health conditions including depression and anxiety. Fruits and vegetables, grains, fish, lean red meats and olive oils are rich in important nutrients such as folate, magnesium, vitamins and zinc, which all impact on body and brain functions including mood regulation.
Poor nutrition can also affect the immune system, and this holds links to mental health functioning. High-fat, high-sugar diets can affect proteins in the body that are important for brain development, so it’s important not to consume too many of these poor nutrition choices. Iron deficiency has been linked to cognitive function impairments associated with learning and memory, and food insecurity is a psychological stressor. Food insecurity is the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food, which can cause high levels of stress. High levels of ongoing stress have been related to depression and cognitive deficits.
Fortunately, improving what you eat can lead to improvements in your mental health and wellbeing.
The Wishing Well foundation
The Wishing Well was established in 2010 to offer children in out-of-home care, such as foster care and residential care, a range of healing and treatment options usually not accessible as a free therapy in mainstream health.
The Wishing Well raises funds to enable children and young people to access developmentally-appropriate and trauma-informed treatments shown to be highly effective in dealing with severe trauma and neglect. These therapies respond to the unique needs of each child and young person.
The Wishing Well is a not-for-profit incorporated charity organisation, established and managed by people seeking to improve outcomes for children and young people in out-of-home care and their families. The Wishing Well recognises the importance of the act of giving. We recognise the significance of the participation of community members and all donations are most appreciated.
The Wishing Well operates ethically, effectively and empathically with a view to achieving quality outcomes and a satisfying working environment.
Support the Wishing Well
The Wishing Well uses its funds to help children in need access all manners of developmentally-appropriate and trauma-informed treatments. The Wishing Well takes referrals for any child/young person in out-of-home care in NSW. Applications are assessed by qualified personnel and on a case-by-case basis. The decision to fund an application is affected by the following:
- Funding availability
- The support the child/young person has to access the proposed therapies
- The capacity and willingness of the Carer Household to support the child/young person
- Assessment, which recommends and supports the proposed therapy as relevant to meeting the particular needs of the child/young person
The Wishing Well gratefully receives donations, funding and resources through bequests, corporate partnerships, fundraising events, grants, online donations and other fund raising activities. Money donated to The Wishing Well enables traumatised children access to healing therapies. Please see our website for more information: