Food plays a vital role in our lives. We eat not only for sustenance but also for pleasure. Eating healthy has always been considered good, especially for schizophrenia patients, as they are prone to many ailments. Eating habits or preferences change when schizophrenia is diagnosed and is in the initial stages. This is to prevent metabolic abnormalities, weight gains, etc. Here are some dietary tips for schizophrenia patients.
Fruits are loaded with vitamins, so having at least two servings of fruits per day is not only one of the best dietary tips for schizophrenia patients but for everyone. Fruits are very nutritious and fibrous; one can have pears, strawberries, avocado, apples, raspberries, and bananas. Fiber helps in digestion and helps to prevent cholesterol-related issues. A fiber-rich diet also lowers schizophrenia-related ailments, such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
Including vegetables in the diet is another one of the dietary tips for schizophrenia patients. Vegetables have minerals, vitamins, fiber, and almost no calories. Vegetables such as lima beans, sweet potatoes, broccoli, mushrooms, peas, cucumber, eggplant, and kidney beans are rich in potassium and help to maintain blood sugar levels. Spinach is loaded with folate, an element that helps to cope with schizophrenia symptoms. Black-eyed peas and asparagus are other veggies rich in folate.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids help in preventing and easing symptoms of schizophrenia. Since the human body cannot produce omega-3 fatty acids, we have to depend on foods that are rich in this nutrient. Dietary tips for schizophrenia patients also involves eating fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines, and albacore tuna that are high in omega-3 fatty acids. If one doesn’t like fish, or if one is a vegetarian, they can ask the doctor for omega-3 supplements. They can also add flax seeds to their diet, as they are high in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids.
Many studies have shown a co-relation between low levels of zinc and schizophrenia. Including seafood, such as oysters, crabs, and lobsters that are high in zinc in one’s diet is essential. Doctors recommend zinc, as it improves mental health and lowers the homocysteine levels of schizophrenia patients.
If one is suffering from schizophrenia, they should limit the intake of saturated and trans fats in their diet. This will help to reduce blood cholesterol and maintain a healthy weight. Choose lean meat over red meat. Opt for monounsaturated fats, such as olive oil or canola oil. One can also have avocados, nuts and seeds, as they contain polyunsaturated fats.
Buckwheat, chia seeds, millet, finger millet, barley, cracked wheat, and brown rice are cereals are packed with most of the essential nutrients and have adequate fiber. They can help to manage schizophrenia symptoms.
These dietary tips for schizophrenia patients will not just help to manage this mental condition but will also boost one’s health.