If you are feeling tired, moody or just generally run down, it could be due to the foods you are eating. Read on to find out how certain foods may affect your moods.
How do Certain Foods Affect Our Moods?
Foods act as kinds of chemical compounds that can directly alter the brain chemicals (neurotransmitters) that allow us to function normally on a day-to-day basis.
When neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine are found to either be deficient in amount, or inefficient in their uptake ability, the blues often result. Interestingly, certain food components have also been found to have influence on the level of neurotransmitters, making what you eat all the more important when managing states of depression.
Superfoods to Boost Your Mood
- Oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, sardines and herring contain high levels of Omega 3s that are rich in the EPA that acts as a natural yet powerful anti-depressant.
- Wholegrain cereals, such as pasta, breads, oats and brown rice. These foods have been shown to elevate tryptophan levels in the brain. This neurotransmitter is used to produce Serotonin, the "feel-good" neurotransmitter thought responsible for symptoms of depression when in deficiency.
- Dark green vegetables, such as Spinach and peas are rich in folate, which plays a key role in Serotonin absorption.
- Chicken and turkey, two meat choices that are rich in the Vitamin B6 essential to serotonin production in the body.
- Edamame beans, which are rich in protein and help to stabilize blood sugar levels that may influence mood.
- Ground flaxseeds, which are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids, and may stablise the mood by increasing levels of serotonin in the brain.
- Legumes and soy, which both contain rich amounts of the B vitamin Thiamine that is essential to a stable cognitive and sharp memory function, as well as to building healthy brain cells.
- Avocados, which are rich in both Omega 3 fatty acids and Vitamin E, an anti-oxidant found deficient in most Depression patients.