Nutrition and Mental Health
A person's food intake affects mood, behavior, and nutrition and mental health. A hungry person may feel irritable and restless, whereas a person who has just eaten a meal may feel calm and satisfied. A sleepy person may feel more productive after a cup of coffee and a light snack. A person who has consistently eaten less food or energy than needed over a long period of time may be apathetic and moody.
The human brain has high energy and nutrient needs. Changes in energy or nutrient intake can alter both brain chemistry and the functioning of nerves in the brain. Intake of energy and several different nutrients affect levels of chemicals in the brain called neurotransmitters.
Neurotransmitters transmit nerve impulses from one nerve cell to another, and they influence mood, sleep patterns, and thinking. Deficiencies or excesses of certain vitamins or minerals can damage nerves in the brain, causing changes in memory, limiting problem-solving ability, and impairing brain function.
Several nutritional factors can influence mental health, including: overall energy intake, intake of the energy-containing nutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, and fats), alcohol intake, and intake of vitamins and minerals. Often deficiencies of multiple nutrients rather than a single nutrient are responsible for changes in brain functioning.
In the United States and other developed countries, alcoholism is often responsible for nutritional deficiencies that affect mental functioning. Diseases can also cause nutritional deficiencies by affecting absorption of nutrients into the body or increasing nutritional requirements. Poverty, ignorance, and fad diets also contribute to nutritional deficiencies.
Energy Intake and Mental Health
Energy, often referred to as the calorie content of a food, is derived from the carbohydrate, protein, fat, and alcohol found in foods and beverages. Although vitamins and minerals are essential to the body, they provide no energy. The human brain is metabolically very active and uses about 20 to 30% of a person's energy intake at rest. Individuals who do not eat adequate calories from food to meet their energy requirements will experience changes in mental functioning. Simply skipping breakfast is associated with lower fluency and problem-solving ability, especially in individuals who are already slightly malnourished. A hungry person may also experience lack of energy or motivation.
Chronic hunger and energy deprivation profoundly affects mood and responsiveness. The body responds to energy deprivation by shutting or slowing down nonessential functions, altering activity levels, hormonal levels, oxygen and nutrient transport, the body's ability to fight infection, and many other bodily functions that directly or indirectly affect brain function. People with a consistently low energy intake often feel apathetic, sad, or hopeless.
Developing fetuses and young infants are particularly susceptible to brain damage from malnutrition. The extent of the damage depends on the timing of the energy deprivation in relation to stage of development. Malnutrition early in life has been associated with below-normal intelligence, and functional and cognitive defects.
Carbohydrates and Mental Health
Carbohydrates include starches, naturally occurring and refined sugars, and dietary fiber. Foods rich in starches and dietary fiber include grain products like breads, rice, pasta and cereals, especially whole-grain products; fruits; and vegetables, especially starchy vegetables like potatoes. Foods rich in refined sugars include cakes, cookies, desserts, candy, and soft drinks.
Carbohydrates significantly affect mood and behavior. Eating a meal high in carbohydrates triggers release of a hormone called insulin in the body. Insulin helps let blood sugar into cells where it can be used for energy, but insulin also has other effects in the body. As insulin levels rise, more tryptophan enters the brain. Tryptophan is an amino acid, or a building block of protein, that affects levels of neurotransmitters in the brain. As more tryptophan enters the brain, more of the neurotransmitter serotonin is produced. Higher serotonin levels in the brain enhance mood and have a sedating effect, promoting sleepiness. This effect is partly responsible for the drowsiness some people experience after a large meal.
Some researchers claim that a high sugar intake causes hyperactivity in children. Although carefully controlled studies do not support this conclusion, high sugar intake is associated with dental problems. Further, foods high in refined sugars are often low in other nutrients, making it prudent to limit their use.
Proteins and Mental Health
Proteins are made up of amino acids linked together in various sequences and amounts. The human body can manufacture some of the amino acids, but there are eight essential amino acids that must be supplied in the diet. A complete or high-quality protein contains all eight of the essential amino acids in the amounts needed by the body. Foods rich in high-quality protein include meats, milk and other dairy products, and eggs. Dried beans and peas, grains, and nuts and seeds also contain protein, although the protein in these plant foods may be low in one or more essential amino acid. Generally, combining any two types of plant protein foods together will yield a complete, high-quality protein. For example, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich combines grain protein from the bread with nut protein from the peanut butter to yield a complete protein. A bean-rice hot dish combines bean and grain protein for another complete protein combination.
Protein intake and intake of individual amino acids can affect brain functioning and mental health. Many of the neurotransmitters in the brain are made from amino acids. The neurotransmitter dopamine is made from the amino acid tyrosine. The neurotransmitter serotonin is made from the amino acid tryptophan. If the needed amino acid is not available, levels of that particular neurotransmitter in the brain will fall, and brain functioning and mood will be affected. For example, if there is a lack of tryptophan in the body, not enough serotonin will be produced, and low brain levels of serotonin are associated with low mood and even aggression in some individuals. Likewise, some diseases can cause a buildup of certain amino acids in the blood, leading to brain damage and mental defects. For example, a buildup of the amino acid phenylalanine in individuals with a disease called pheylketonuria can cause brain damage and mental retardation.
Fats and Mental Health
Dietary intake of fats may also play a role in regulating mood and brain function. Dietary fats are found in both animal and plant foods. Meats, regular-fat dairy products, butter, margarine, and plant oils are high in fats.
Although numerous studies clearly document the benefits of a cholesterol-lowering diet for the reduction of heart disease risk, some studies suggest that reducing fat and cholesterol in the diet may deplete brain serotonin levels, causing mood changes, anger, and aggressive behavior.
Other studies have looked at the effects of a particular kind of fat, the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oils, and brain functioning. Although a few studies suggest omega-3 fatty acids are helpful with bipolar affective disorder and stress, results are inconclusive.
High levels of fat and cholesterol in the diet contribute to atherosclerosis, or clogging of the arteries. Atherosclerosis can decrease blood flow to the brain, impairing brain functioning. If blood flow to the brain is blocked, a stroke occurs.
Alcohol and Mental Health
A high alcohol intake can interfere with normal sleep patterns, and thus can affect mood. Alcoholism is one of the most common causes of nutritional deficiencies in developed countries. Alcoholic beverages provide energy but virtually no vitamins or minerals. A person who consumes large amounts of alcohol will meet their energy needs but not their vitamin and mineral needs. In addition, extra amounts of certain vitamins are needed to break down alcohol in the body, further contributing to nutrient deficiencies.
Mangosteen and Mental health
Mangosteen has been used to promote health and fight sickness in Southeast Asia since the sixth century. While these ancient cultures didn’t know why mangosteen worked, they did know it was a powerful healing agent. Although they couldn’t tell you that special phytochemicals in the fruit called xanthones possess potent disease-fighting potential, they could tell you that when they ate the fruit, their condition improved.
In the last 30 years, scientists have studied mangosteen to determine to what extent the folklore is true. A great wealth of knowledge has emerged, as we now know about the broad spectrum healing properties of xanthones, as well as the fruit’s impressive array of nutrients vital for disease prevention and overall good health.
The Mind-Gut Connection
Many of today’s ailments, including nervous system and mental ailments, can be attributed to what we take into our bodies. Much of what we consume today is loaded sugars, simple carbohydrates, pesticides, preservatives, artificial flavors, and colors. All of these contribute to abnormal function of the gastrointestinal, or GI, system.
A consequence of GI dysfunction is called leaky-gut syndrome, the inflammation and hyper-permeability of the gastrointestinal lining. When the GI lining is inflamed and hyper-permeable, it allows many more toxins, heavy metals, and free radicals into the blood stream than would normally pass through. Many scientists and health professionals believe leaky gut syndrome leads to a host of serious health problems, including depression, Alzheimer’s, chronic fatigue, ADD, and insomnia.
Mangosteen and Leaky Gut Syndrome
One of the great benefits of mangosteen is its ability to help alleviate the inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract. When mangosteen is consumed regularly, the xanthones act as anti-inflammatories within the gut. When the gut is not inflamed, it’s lining stops toxins from passing into the body or the bloodstream and eliminates them normally. The connection between mangosteen and leaky gut syndrome is especially important in the context of mental health and a properly functioning nervous system.
Autism and Mangosteen
Experts estimate that almost one out of every 100 children is diagnosed as autistic. Autism is manifest in such behavior as self-injury, mood swings, isolation, and deficient verbal communication skills. Several of the issues that affect autism seem to be common among many mental and behavioral disorders, and you will see that each of these are related to other disorders discussed later.
Amino acids. Researchers believe autistic children’s GI problems allow excessive levels of certain amino acids (peptides) into the bloodstream, which caused the behavioral abnormality. Because amino acids are primary building blocks of neurotransmitters (which influence mood and behavior), it is possible that any imbalance of amino acids in the body may have an effect on a person’s mood and behavior. Xanthones in mangosteen are potent anti-inflammatory agents and can help improve digestive health and help balance essential amino acids.
Essential Fatty Acids. Essential fatty acids are critical for normal brain function, and low levels in early years can lead to abnormal brain development. In addition, neurotransmitters like serotinin may also be affected by a fatty acid imbalance.
Autistic children have been found to have significantly high omega-6 levels, and low omega-3 levels have been linked to hyperactivity and frequent tantrums. Mangosteen offers the ability to counter oxidation and the inflammatory processes that are both induced by dietary problems associated with fatty-acid imbalance.
Melatonin Imbalance. Research suggests autistic children are susceptible to sleep cycle disturbances, indicating that children with autism may produce lower levels of melatonin, which affects the body’s internal clock. The abnormal levels of melatonin may trigger a chain of hormonal and biochemical reactions negatively affecting behavior. Melatonin is also a powerful antioxidant that has both fat and water-soluble qualities, allowing it to cross the blood/brain barrier, where it can keep the brain cells free from oxidative stress.
Food Allergies. Many autistic patients are sensitive to certain foods. Children with autism also often display increased GI permeability, allowing peptides from foods to enter the bloodstream and trigger immune system reactions associated with behavioral abnormalities. The anti-inflammatory action of xanthones can have a positive effect on the reduction of allergic episodes in autistic patients. Not only do xanthones help ease inflammation of the gut, they also kill parasites and bacteria that aggravate GI inflammation and leaky-gut syndrome.
Heavy Metals. A child’s blood/brain barrier, which blocks harmful substances from damaging the brain, is not fully formed until about a year after birth. One study found that in a group of 18 autistic children, 16 had blood levels of toxins exceeding adult maximum tolerances. Studies have also supported an association between autism and high levels of lead. Again, the GI dysfunction of increased permeability allow greater amounts of heavy metals to penetrate the gut barrier to enter the bloodstream and increase the toxic burden in young children.
Fighting Depression with Mangosteen
We know that many factors influence the development of depression: poor nutrition, digestive disorders, fatty acid imbalance are a few. Xanthones can ease the effects of fatty acid imbalance and repair damage from dangerous toxins. It is my opinion that xanthones reduce stress, decrease excessive cortisol levels and regulate proper hormone balance.
Improved Sleep with Mangosteen
Using mangosteen juice helped me when no other natural treatment had. Xanthones reduce physical stress, regulate cortisol levels, balance melatonin levels and facilitate proper metabolism by balancing amino acid levels. Xanthones also promote normal gut permeability, which is key in maintaining healthy levels of tryptophan. Tryptophan has been proven to increase the quantity and quality of sleep without the adverse effects on memory and cognitive performance associated with benzodiazepine drugs used as sleep medications.
Dementia, Memory and Mangosteen
Scientists believe senile dementia is caused by several factors, including low levels of DHEA, DHEA-S, and the thyroid hormone TSH, excessive levels of cortisol, and gastrointestinal tract and liver dysfunction. Other possible causes include many that I’ve already listed.
Again, mangosteen and its xanthones appear to offer the solution to most of today’s most common ailments. From thousands of years of traditional use and modern scientific research, we know that they truly are amazing all-purpose healing nutrients.
Consider some facts:
Relieve for Hyperactivity and ADHD? Mangosteen has powerful phytochemicals that help boost the health of many functions in the body, including brain function, which is connected to the possible causes of ADD. I personally have seen regular use of mangosteen diminish hyperactivity and ADD symptoms.
Many research studies have discovered a strong connection between hyperactive behavior in children and the existence of food allergies, heavy metal toxicity, serotinin and tryptophan deficiencies, leaky gut, and blood sugar and amino acid imbalances. Xanthones are thought to be a heavy metal chelator, helping the body get rid of heavy metal toxins. They are also efficient in reducing the symptoms of leaky gut and restoring liver function, allowing amino acid levels to normalize.
Mangosteen: Chronic Fatigue Fighter. Whatever you believe chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) to be, we do know that it encumbers a person’s life, making it difficult to handle any stress. It is associated with depression, weight loss, and low blood pressure. Experts believe that CFS may be related to thyroid problems, leaky gut syndrome, oxidative stress, allergies, fatty acid imbalances, parasitic infection, liver dysfunction and poor energy conversion on the cellular level.
As discussed previously, mangosteen’s potent antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and anti-allergy properties make it an invaluable superfood for recovery from chronic fatigue. Xanthones in mangosteen are also noted for their ability to heal a leaky gut, to regulate fatty acid and amino acid levels, to promote healthy liver function, and to improve cellular energy production.
NOTE: One of the reasons for designing this website is to educate visitors on the benefits of daily consumption of Pure Mangosteen Juice. It is also a web site sharing resources and info about mangosteen juice benefits and Xanthones.
Mangosteen is a fruit. The health benefits from mangosteen due to xanthones have been shown in laboratory studies to be powerful antioxidants, anti-inflammatories, and to have other special properties.
However, laboratory results do not guarantee that the same will happen in the human body. Mangosteen is a supplement and not a drug; therefore, no one can say that mangosteen juice benefits include a cure, treat, or prevent any specific condition or symptom the way a drug prescription is administered by a qualified health practitioner.
The United States government, however, has determined and stated that increasing the amount of plant-based foods and supplements in our diet improves our health and decreases the incidence of chronic disease. Look at the available science on the mangosteen and then answer for yourself - Does mangosteen juice make sense for you?
The only way to find out what mangosteen will do for you is to begin taking it. In the case of mental illness, it is important to do this with the assistance of a qualified professional.
View 8 min Video on How to Order Mangosteen Juice at WHOLESALE