@pickthebrain caught my attention with this post….and I like it!!
Good times, bad times, everybody roller-coasters into their own good moods and bad moods. However, if you’ve become chronically pessimistic with your personal outlook or, even completely grouchy on most days then, a red flag may have to be raised — or not.
See if your mood can be improved simply by incorporating these 7 foods in your daily eating plan:
1. Chocolate. In 2013, a study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology observed and graded the effect of chocolate on the mood of 72 healthy, middle aged participants. Participants given high doses of chocolates have significantly higher levels of self-rated calmness and contentedness compared to subjects under placebo treatment. The researchers recommended for chocolates to be studied as a treatment for anxiety and depression.
Anandamide and caffeine in chocolate is credited for its happiness giving composition. So, if you’re in a bad mood, take a bar or two and everything won’t seem so bad anymore. However, if you’re trying to lose a few inches at the same time, dark chocolate gives you the better choice.
2.Coffee. If caffeine is making chocolate such a powerful mood enhancer then, naturally, coffee can have the same effect. Well, isn’t that the reason why most people reach for a cup because it has become such an integral part of their diet plan? In fact, coffee, unlike chocolate which has only been linked to improved moods, improves both mood and cognitive performance — that includes attention span, focus and memory).
More recent studies, however, show that how much caffeine you consume also affects how it positively affects your brain. Apparently, too much is never good. Beyond normal caffeine intake, the positive effects of coffee become to taper off and decline.
3.Walnuts. In a study published in the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology in 2015, walnuts were found to improve the moods of young male subjects, specifically concerning anger and hostility.
The mood enhancing effect of walnuts has long been attributed to its high magnesium content which helps enhance the levels of serotonin in the brain. Low serotonin has been linked to several neurological functions that includes mood, normal heart functioning, feeling of pain, and even libido. Walnuts are real brain food too. You need just 5 pieces or less to feed your brain with Omega-3 fatty acids.
4.Fatty fish. Other foods that contain high levels of Omega-3s are salmon, sardines, trout and tuna. Omega-3s are known to promote overall brain health, which strongly supports how this essential nutrient affects all brain functions that include your mood, memory and capability to manage stress. Include fatty fish in your weekly diet planand you won’t have to worry about letting your emotions get in the way of your rationale mind in going about your daily routine.
5.Leafy greens. These contain high levels of antioxidants — in great and highly varied amounts. Antioxidants have natural anti-inflammatory properties that help your mind fight symptoms of anxiety and depression. Depression has been linked to chronic inflammation and by addressing this problem, you are also enhancing your mood.
Leafy greens also promote healthy digestion and aids in metabolism. The mood enhancing effects of increased serotonin levels, therefore, are greatly affected by enhancing digestive health. These group of vegetables are rich in B vitamins too which improve nerve health and therefore affects normal brain functioning.
6.Lentils. Rich in folate, a B vitamin, making this rich source of protein part of your regular diet can also help enhance your mood. Patients suffering from depression have been found to have lower than normal levels of folate. These days, folate, along with magnesium, are regularly recommended as supplements for people with psychiatric or mental health problems. Dark, green, leafy vegetables, beans and chickpeas are also rich sources of folate.
7. Yogurt. Since improving gut health is essential in enhancing serotonin production levels, the probiotics found in yogurt can help promote good bacteria to overcome potential stomach infections that can get in the way of a good mood.
Sometimes, it could just be the little things which your mind and body are subjected to that could be making you feel bad and unusually grouchy — the amount of sunshine you’ve been getting, the level of physical activity you’ve been having or, the kind of food you are filling up with. When you fuel up with these 7 foods, you are also enhancing your chances of celebrating a fun-filled day rather than a stressful one.