Foods That Boost Mood | Discover Foods That Make You Happy
When you’re feeling moody, it can be tempting to turn to food to lift your spirits. However, the sugary and fatty treats can have a negative impact on your body later.
Food and mood are so connected, what we eat impacts how we feel.
If you eat bad processed food, your gut will get mad at your brain and that will manifest in anxiety and sometimes in depression. 95% of your serotonin – our happy hormone that helps regulate sleep and mood – is produced in your gut, meaning there’s a direct link between the food you eat and your happiness levels.
Research shows that simply making changes in what you eat can significantly boost mood and improve symptoms of anxiety and depression.
In a recent clinical study, researchers split nearly 70 people-all diagnosed with depression, and all on poor diets-into two groups. The first group had no form of therapy but switched to a healthy, Mediterranean-style diet rich in fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts. The second group met regularly with a support group and continued to chow down on sweets, processed foods and salty snacks.
After three months, the healthy eaters showed fewer symptoms of depression than the second group. In fact, more than a third of them no longer even met the criteria for being depressed.
You may wonder whether any healthy foods can improve your mood.
Here are top healthy foods that may boost your mood, relieve anxiety and help ease stress:
1. DARK CHOCOLATE
Dark chocolate is a known mood booster, as cocoa raises serotonin levels in the brain.
Dark chocolate boosts the production of feel-good chemicals called endorphins. Endorphins bind with opiate receptors in the brain leading to feelings of euphoria.
Berries contain high levels of antioxidants, compounds that protect cells from damage by harmful free radicals, which play a key role in combating oxidative stress.
Berries are rich in disease-fighting anthocyanins, which may lower your risk of depression.
3. HEMP SEEDS
Hemp seeds are super rich in omegas, magnesium, amino acids and B vitamins, making them a natural solution to alleviating stress and anxiety.
Scientific proof that hemp makes you happy. Magnesium works the neurotransmitter functions in our bodies known to reduce levels of stress and anxiety, while the amino acids build up our body's protein, providing us with the energy necessary to keep our bodies strong.
If our bodies aren't getting enough quality amino acids, this produces a reverse effect and actually leads to an overproduction of stress hormones.
The B vitamins help boost metabolism and regulate the stress hormones produced which maintains balance between the body and brain.
The amount of healthful omega-3 to omega-6 ratio in hemp seeds can together help to reduce inflammation.
4. GREEN TEA
According to a Japanese study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, drinking two to three cups of green tea a day was linked to reduced depression symptoms in elderly people. That may be due to a number of mood-boosting nutrients that help fight anxiety.
Green tea also has some caffeine-enough for a pick-me-up when you're feeling down, but not enough to give you the jitters.
5. MACA ROOT
Maca is an adaptogenic herb, and something all adaptogens have in common is that they can help the body manage environmental stress.
Maca contains flavonoids, which are thought to improve mood and reduce anxiety.
One study showed that maca root reduces symptoms of anxiety and depression, especially in post-menopausal women. Another scientific studies show consuming maca can help keep cortisol levels from rising.
A 2014 study found a link between consuming maca for six weeks and increased dopamine levels, leading to reduced feelings of depression.
Others maca's many adaptogenic functions: balance hormones, increase libido and boost your energy.
The best way to take maca is to add it into a smoothie.
Ashwagandha is an adaptogenic herb, best known for its ability to reduce stress.
Ashwagandha also provides numerous other benefits for the body and brain, as it can boost brain function, lower blood sugar and cortisol levels, and help fight symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Ashwagandha can affect your serotonin level by raising it, which could ultimately improve your energy and mood.
7. SUPERFOOD SMOOTHIE
A healthy energising smoothie for breakfast, which contains a whole host of nutritious ingredients such as bananas, berries, seeds and superfoods that will help you to feel healthy, happy and energised throughout the day.
Banana offers a great source of the amino acid tryptophan which is required by the body to create serotonin – often referred to as the ‘happy chemical’ as it contributes to happiness and mental well-being.
You can find all mood boosting and nutrient-dense superfoods in our Energy & Vitality Superfood Blend for energy and mood boost.
100% natural superfood blend with a delicious combination of mood boosting and energizing cacao, maca, ashwagandha, and acai will jazz up your day and give you a daily dose of healthy nutrients and energy.
Shop here: Feel Good Superfood Bundle