Have you ever felt that wave of bliss after enjoying a good meal? You’re not alone: the foods you eat not only contribute to your overall health, but they can improve your mood, too. If you’re looking to put some pep in your step consider adding some of these good mood foods to your diet:
Dark chocolate contains the chemical serotonin and can boost the production of endorphins– the “feel good” chemicals in your brain that bind with receptors to produce a feeling of euphoria. Endorphins are also natural stress and pain fighters.
Salmon and Flax Seeds
Salmon and flax seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Many studies show that those who eat a diet rich in omega-3s have lower levels of depression and anxiety. Other good sources include chia seeds, hemp, and leafy greens.
Oranges, Strawberries, and Carrots
Mussels and Kefir
Seafood, such as mussels, and dairy products, including kefir, contain vitamin B12. B Vitamins, especially B12, help maintain healthy nerve cells and produce brain chemicals that positively affect mood. Kefir is also rich in probiotics and studies show these good bacteria can act as anti-depressants and positively impact mood.
Turkey, Eggs and Kefir (Again)
These foods are good sources of tryptophan, a precursor to serotonin, that again helps you feel calm. Eggs are also a good source of B vitamins.
Eat to Fuel Your Mood
If snacking on carrot sticks or munching on dark chocolate alone doesn’t sound appealing to you, consider some of the following options:
- A kefir smoothie made with plain kefir, fresh berries and chia seeds
- Steel cut oatmeal with a splash of kefir, ground flax seed and shaved dark chocolate
- A kale salad with walnuts, cranberries, turkey breast and a kefir salad dressing of your choosing
- Scrambled eggs, whole grain toast and sliced strawberries
If you have questions about your diet, or are suffering from anxiety or depressions, reach out to a medical profession for assistance. A registered dietitian nutritionist can also help provide advice about dietary choices that are right for you.