Medically reviewed by Darshita Thakkar, Nutrition Training and Quality Manager for PAN India
Remember those days you were extra cranky and grumpy because you had skipped your breakfast that morning? Or those days when you have gone to bed empty stomach only to toss and turn throughout the night? It is common knowledge that what we eat has the potential to determine our mood. And a promising diet for depression can sound like an ultimate bliss.
As a matter of fact, some foods have the ability to improve our mood and mood swings and one such amazing food is the cashew nut. Some of the major components of depression are stress and anxiety. Health gurus all over the world have been recommending physical exercises and yoga to deal with stress and this has also been backed by modern science.
However, one of the most significant powerhouses to deal with depression is cashew nut. Cashew has innumerable nutrients that it can be used as a substitute for yogurt, butter, cheese, and eggs. 
Why Cashew Nuts?
Cashew nut is packed with essential nutrients such as vitamin B6, protein and other essential amino acids which acts as natural antidepressants. 
In most cases, serotonin (a chemical produced by nerve cells) deficiency is responsible for increased levels of stress and anxiety. Here is the good news. Cashew nut is loaded with one of the most significant amino acids, tryptophan which is responsible for the regulation of serotonin in the brain and acts as a precursor to the antidepressant hormone. Tryptophan is one of the chief components in all plant-based food.
Tryptophan is found in extreme density in cashew nuts: 1000-2000 milligrams per ¼ cup serving. Apart from cashew nuts, tryptophan can be found in bananas, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, almonds, and pumpkin seeds.
One of the foremost influencers of our mood and emotions is magnesium. To have a healthy mind and nervous system, it is important to notch up the amount of magnesium intake to a considerable degree.
Speaking of magnesium, cashew nuts and almonds are a good source of magnesium. Additionally, magnesium also takes an active part in mitigating the blood sugar level which may directly influence our stress levels. Cashew nuts contain 83 milligrams of magnesium per serving.
Vitamin B6 plays a vital role when it comes to mental health. Like amino acids, vitamin B6 has a direct influence on the secretion of serotonin. Combined with tryptophan, vitamin B6 helps calm our mind. Apart from cashews, other foods which contain rich amounts of vitamin B6 include bananas, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, almonds, pumpkin seeds, avocados, and chia. 
Inclusion of Food Fats
Like vitamin B6 and magnesium, a balanced intake of healthy unsaturated fats obtained from nuts has a major influence on the nervous system of our body.
Cashew nuts are one of the finest sources of monounsaturated fats which are essential for keeping depression and other mood disorder conveniently at bay.
Think twice before swallowing the pill
Most of the people diagnose depression only when it’s in advance stage and resort to taking pills in order to tackle the issue. Though modern medicines work, it can also have side effects. To prevent complications, it is important to know the symptoms of depression and diagnose it at the earliest. Exercising regularly and ensure a minimum of eight hours of sleep are some of the natural ways to tackle depression.
In some regions of the world, depression is considered as a very minor or non-existent condition. Adding insult to injury, many celebrities and internet influencers have started to glamorise the condition when it is anything but glamorous. This attitude bars patients from seeking genuine medical help. As a consequence, patients end up at quacks’ clinics who prescribe unwanted and addictive pills worsening the situation.
Though food plays a vital role in meeting the much needed vitamins and amino acids required to tackle depression, nothing can replace the significance of regular exercise and sound sleeping habits.
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