Food For A Good Mood
Let me start by saying I understand that the world is very intense right now! Now more than ever, what you watch and listen to a matter. Did you know that what you EAT can contribute to a good or bad mood? If you are out of energy most of the time, feeling sad, hopeless, and lack any motivation, you could be depressed. The first thing I recommend is to find a professional! Get some help and DO what the doctor or therapist tells you to do.
Here is what YOU can do on top of the professional's advice to increase feeling better. Eat well, sleep well, and do some physical activity. The first thing I look at is nutrition when I think I am in a funk. Of course, most of the time, in my case, I find that if I have been eating garbage, that's how I begin to feel. These are the foods, after lots of research and trying. I find it to be beneficial. After a few days, I start to feel like myself again.
According to NIH (This is a great read)
When studying depressed people, the research shows that most people are making poor food choices, which can cause their serotonin levels to drop.
It may just be me, but I swear I instantly feel better when I eat chocolate! I mean seriously. It tastes amazing! Eating a PIECE of chocolate daily for a couple of weeks has been shown to increase serotonin levels. I emphasize a piece because, like anything else, it can be too much of a good thing. If you eat a bar a day and gain a lot of weight, that could be pretty depressing and would defeat the purpose. Dark chocolate is best. The darker, the better. That's where the antioxidants are!
Chocolate has also been shown to reduce stress! I have lots of that in my life; I don't know about you;)
Salmon, in particular, has LOTS of Omega 3's! Why does this matter? Omega has shown a lot of success in reducing anxiety. Omega's also increased serotonin and dopamine, which translates to happier! I have been a vegetarian for over thirty years. I am mostly a vegan now, but the one exception I began to make about twelve years ago was some seafood here there for my best mental health. I figured I had saved enough animals, and fish aren't that cute. I never saw someone cuddle a salmon, so I got over it. The one thing I will not do is ever buy farm-raised. I prefer wild-caught from a reputable source. I also have put the entire family on Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega.
Over and over again, blueberries are shown to be a tiny little capsule of goodness. They are packed with antioxidants! You can add them to so many dishes or eat them by themselves like grapes. This innocent little berry is also being linked to reducing inflammation. Inflammation is on the rise for most of us due to chronic stress- Did I mention I get a bit stressed out? OY! Also, from poor-quality foods and not enough sleep.
I have to admit I have never been a massive fan of Tea, but after decades of reading that green Tea was healthy for me, I learned to like it. I said LIKE, not love. I have a LOVE affair with coffee. I try to slip a cup or two into my day and think about how this cup reduces my stress and increases my mood as I drink it. Green Tea has Amino Acids and L-Theanine, which helps with anti-anxiety. Green Tea also has caffeine but not as much as coffee. Supposedly there are fewer jitters with Green Tea than coffee.
(Jitters? What jitters? I only shake a little from the four cups of coffee I had today. Just kidding. It's only been three)
We are moving on to Probiotics.
I love to talk about probiotics! It's all about the gut! Your gut health is so essential for your brain health! Ok, here we go. I have a slight rant about yogurt.
Check your yogurt!!! If your yogurt has almost as much sugar as ice cream, this is NOT a good thing! Added sugar is terrible on so many levels, and food companies add it to EVERYTHING to trick us. The packaging LOOKS healthy, and you think you are making the right decision for you and your family. What is happening to our food is criminal. A lot of this has to do with added sugar.
Unfortunately, it is up to us to read our labels, and if you don't do this already, be prepared to be shocked, awed, and then angry. ADDED sugar causes diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and here we are back to inflammation again. Sugar has been linked to cancer growth, shown not to be good for our brains, and feed harmful bacteria in the gut. So, what's a girl supposed to do about her yogurt? My family gets Greek yogurt and adds some fruit to it and a little honey. (Way less sugar this way)
I don't eat dairy, so I get either coconut, almond, or oat yogurt with the lowest sugar I can find.
To each their own. Find what work s for you and your family. I also found a probiotic that I love! (I get no kickback here… Unless you want to give me one, Dr. Axe)
Dr. Axe's probiotics are genuinely different than any other's I have tried over the years. I highly recommend them! SBO probiotics. The bloat is all but gone!
Let me finish up by saying that it's probably highly processed food if it comes from a bag or a box, which is definitely not good for any of us. If it was put here by God and you are eating it in its truest form, obviously, that will be better for us than what a factory is producing. If we were meant to drink diet pop (that soda for the rest of the world) then, I’m pretty sure it would have been pumping out of stream somewhere. Or a Dorito could be plucked from a tree. Eating right for good mental health helps us feel better and gives us the energy to have our best life.
May you have good mental health.
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