The Case for Cashews: An Alternative Treatment for Depression

Drug companies won’t admit, but there are a plethora of alternative natural treatments for many of today’s diseases. One such natural wonder is the cashew. What once sounded to you as just another nut in your trailmix is actually a basin for a number of health benefits that you can easily take advantage of.

Cashews are chock full of essential vitamins

Pantothenic Acid  (Vitamin B5) and Thiamin (Vitamin B11):

This group of vitamins is a cholesterol-lowering dietary supplement, crucial for the metabolism of fat, protein and carbs at a cellular level.

Pyridoxine and Riboflavin (Vitamin B6):

The vitamin B6 group is an extremely beneficial vitamin group because it significantly lowers the chances of developing sideroblastic anemia and homocystinuria. Only 100 grams of cashews provides 30% of the daily-recommended levels of B6.

Besides vitamins, cashews also contain great amounts of essential minerals

Potassium, manganese, copper, selenium, magnesium, zinc, and iron can be found in cashews, all essential minerals that need to be consumed on a daily basis. Only a handful of cashews will provide the daily-recommended values of these important minerals, protecting you from health problems that can come as a result of mineral deficiencies.

Cashews: Treatment for Depression

In additional to all these amazing health benefits, it comes as a surprise to most that cashews are actually an excellent alternative, natural and effective treatment for depression. The reason for this is that cashews are a source of tryptophan, a vital amino acid that combats depression.

Depression is often triggered on the chemical level by serotonin levels in the body dropping drastically. Once we consume tryptophan, our bodies turn it into serotonin, boosting the levels back to normal and effectively fighting depressive episodes. Several handfuls of cashews provide 1,000-2,000 milligrams of tryptophan, working as well as any prescription anti-depressant on the market. Serotonin is a major contributor to feelings of sexual desire, good mood and healthy sleep. The high levels of magnesium and B6 found in cashews also help stabilize mood. All the vitamins and minerals present in cashews work together to keep depression at bay. Vitamin B6 helps convert tryptophan into serotonin and helps magnesium enter the body’s cells. It is truly amazing how only a handful of cashews can provide us with these essential health benefits so if you haven’t already, make sure to pack a bag of cashews with you as your daily snack!