Here at Bodyful Healing we support black women who are living with depression. We hope this depression meal and those that follow, will add to the arsenal of resources already available — dance/movement psychotherapy sessions, The Bodyful Black Girl Podcast, online support groups — and provide a source of nourishment and support as well!
As someone who has lived with depression for 15+ years, I know how challenging it can be to feed yourself when you’re depressed. When I have a depressive episode, I know I need to eat in order to function and that eating can help support mood stability, but the energy and motivation just aren’t there.
It’s hard enough to drag myself out of bed, so standing in the kitchen for twenty-five minutes or more cooking a meal just ain’t happening!
So how do you nourish your body and your brain with minimal effort and motivation?
Start with this depression meal!
It’s a Simple Salmon Salad that will take 5 minutes to make. Maybe 10, if depression has slowed your movements down a bit. Either way, you’ll have the pleasure of knowing that you’re taking in lots of nourishing and essential vitamins and minerals:
The Ingredient Break Down
Salmon contains long-chain omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. These omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to improve symptoms in folks living with depression. These fatty acids have also been shown to increase grey matter in the brain, which may reduce memory loss as we age. If you experience memory loss as part of your depression (I do!), this may offer some relief.
Similar to salmon, avocados are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. They also happen to be rich in fiber, which we need for digestive health and normal bowel movements. This is essential for those of us who experience constipation along with our depression.
This nutrient dense green leafy vegetable is rich in fiber and vital nutrients: calcium, folate, vitamin C, potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin A. These vitamins and minerals provide support to every system of the body from the brain, your bones, and immune system.
Walnuts, like salmon and avocado, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, specifically alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). ALA is an essential fat, meaning the body does not produce it, so you have to get it from the food you eat or the supplements you take. This in conjunction with magnesium and the amino acid arginine, both contained in walnuts helps to reduce internal inflammation and support overall health and well-being.
Ok, now that you know a little about the ingredients, let’s get to the recipe!
- 1 can or packet of wild salmon
- 2 large handfuls of bagged arugula or spinach
- ½ an avocado, sliced
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Small handful of walnuts, chopped
- Salt and pepper to taste
Toss arugula with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Season salmon with salt and pepper as desired, then place salmon on top of the arugula. Add chopped walnuts and sliced avocado.
If you give this “Depression Meal” a try, feel free to tag us and use #BHDepressionMeal. We’d love to see your creations!
We’ll be posting more depression meal recipes here on The Bodyful Healing blog twice each month. Be sure to check back for more additions to our Depression Meal series.