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Dear Friends and Neighbors,

CentraCare care givers have been working around the clock for more than 20 months to care for you, your families and friends during COVID. We are committed to caring for every Minnesotan who needs us, and nothing will prevent us from doing so – even during these never-seen-before times.

The challenge of providing this level of care is that our hospital beds are often full. ERs in all of our hospitals are packed. And our clinical teams are exhausted. Early in the pandemic, our community stepped up in amazing ways to help us. We ask that you again join us in fighting this pandemic together.

How can you help?

  • Please get your COVID vaccines and booster shots. They are proven safe and effective in reducing COVID illness, keeping people out of the hospital, and preventing death.
  • If your situation is not an emergency, please use other care options, including:
  • If this is a medical emergency, call 9-1-1, or visit the ER.

Together, we can do this. Thank you for your support.

Ken Holmen, MD
President and CEO

Is there a link between depression and refined carbohydrates?

Published in Heart & Vascular, Mental Health, For the Health of It Author: Kathleen Mahon, RN, MN, CNP, APHN

According to a study by Columbia Medical Center in 2015, a diet high in refined carbohydrates may lead to an increased risk for new-onset depression in postmenopausal women. 

Highly refined carbohydrates such as white bread/pasta, white rice, crackers, cookies and soda increase blood sugar and trigger a hormonal response in the body to reduce blood sugar levels. This response also may result in mood changes, fatigue and other symptoms of depression. 

The researchers found that progressively higher consumption of added sugar and refined grains was linked with new-onset depression. However, greater consumption of dietary fiber, whole grains, vegetables and fruit was associated with a decreased risk. This suggests that a healthy diet low in refined carbohydrates could serve as a treatment and preventive measure for depression. 

So if you are feeling a little “blue,” take a look at your diet. Start thinking of food as a medicine. The only side effect is better physical and mental health!

Foods to help maintain mental health

  • Beta-carotene: apricots, broccoli, cantaloupe, carrots, collards, peaches, pumpkin, spinach and sweet potato
  • Vitamin C: blueberries, broccoli, grapefruit, kiwi, oranges, peppers, potatoes, strawberries and tomato
  • Vitamin E: margarine, nuts and seeds, vegetable oils, wheat germ
  • Complex carbs: whole grains and legumes
  • Healthy proteins: beans and peas, lean beef, low-fat cheese, fish, milk, poultry, soy products and yogurt
  • Omega-3s: flaxseed, canola and soybean oils, nuts (especially walnuts) and dark green, leafy vegetables