We all get to feel blue from time to time, Evidence suggests food may play a role in your overall mental well-being by helping to reduce stress, lift our mood and improve our outlook on life.
Recently, research on the relationship between nutrition and mental health has been emerging. It’s important to note that mood can be influenced by many factors, such as stress, environment, poor sleep, genetics, mood disorders, and nutritional deficiencies.
Nonetheless, certain foods have been shown to improve overall brain health and certain types of mood disorders.
Here are 6 healthy foods that may boost your mood.
Chocolate is rich in many mood-boosting compounds. Its sugar may improve mood since it’s a quick source of fuel for your brain.
Chocolate makes you happy! It contains a number of potent compounds such as phenylethylamine, which boosts endorphins, and ananadamide, otherwise known as ‘the bliss chemical’.
Fermented foods, such as yogurt may improve gut health and mood. It’s easy to make them at home and they’re one of our go-to mood boosting foods, and they’re also great for supporting immunity.
The fermentation process allows live bacteria to thrive in foods that are then able to convert sugars into alcohol and acids. During this process, probiotics are created. These live microorganisms support the growth of healthy bacteria in your gut and may increase serotonin levels
Bananas may help turn a frown upside down. They’re high in vitamin B6, which helps synthesize feel-good neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin. One large banana (136 grams) provides 16 grams of sugar and 3.5 grams of fiber.
When paired with fiber, sugar is released slowly into your bloodstream, allowing for stable blood sugar levels and better mood control. Blood sugar levels that are too low may lead to irritability and mood swings.
Eating more fruits and vegetables is linked to lower rates of depression. A diet rich in antioxidants may help manage inflammation associated with depression and other mood disorders.
Berries pack a wide range of antioxidants and phenolic compounds, which play a key role in combating oxidative stress. If you can’t find them fresh, try buying frozen berries — which are frozen at their peak ripeness to retain the maximum amount of antioxidants.
Coffee is the world’s most popular drink, and it may make the world a bit happier, too. The caffeine in coffee prevents a naturally occurring compound called adenosine from attaching to brain receptors that promote tiredness, therefore increasing alertness and attention.
Moreover, it increases the release of mood-boosting neurotransmitters, such as dopamine and norepinephrine. Coffee provides numerous compounds, including caffeine and chlorogenic acid, that may boost your mood.
Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of essential fats that you must obtain through your diet because your body can’t produce them on its own.
Fatty fish like salmon and albacore tuna are rich in two types of omega-3s that are linked to lower levels of depression.
Omega-3s contribute to the fluidity of your brain’s cell membrane and appear to play key roles in brain development and cell signaling.
Fatty fish like salmon are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which may lower your risk of depression.