Eat Your Way Toward Happiness
Did you realize that eating certain types of food can make you happier? Everyone knows that eating nutritious food can make you healthier, but it turns out that this same food directly impacts our brain structure, functions and mood.
We at Second Harvest have always believed that consistent nutrition not only tackles food insecurity, but it also builds mental and physical resiliency for all ages. Now there’s a growing body of evidence that supports nutritional psychology as one of the pillars of a healthy, happy life. Further, studies indicate that incorporating more nutritious foods may alleviate symptoms of depression and mental illness in children and adults who recently experienced stressful events.
Because of this connection between food and physical and mental health, we’re committed to providing fresh and nutrient-rich produce to those we serve. Harvest Solutions Farm is one of the key components in our fight against malnutrition by providing fresh produce to the community. A diet that is high in refined sugar is linked to increased rates of depression, while a diet that is high in vegetables, fruits, whole grains and protein is linked to lower rates of depression, which allows for a happier life.
Our advisory team of nutritionists plot out foods that we can distribute to the community to yield the best outcomes. As we strive to grow even more produce locally and help more families and partners within our community, we’re also dedicated to optimizing the health and happiness of those we serve along the way.
“There’s so much new research that’s showing the link between healthy eating and an impact on mood, behavior, anxiety and even depression. It’s really exciting for us in the world of health and prevention to talk about a more holistic approach and about protecting our children and families.”
—DAREEN KHATIB*, SECOND HARVEST BOARD MEMBER AND ADMINISTRATOR OF HEALTH AND WELLNESS AT THE ORANGE COUNTY DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.
*Dareen Khatib is Administrator of Health and Wellness at the Orange County Department of Education. She is also a member of SHFB Board of Directors and Chair of our Nutrition Advisory Council.