What I eat has a profound impact on how I feel. Although my idea of “comfort food” might sometimes be sweet or loaded with carbs, I feel best when I reach for the mood-boosting and nutritional foods. These foods give me a boost of energy (not to be confused with sugar high), balance my mood, help me keep focused and even calm (especially true when I eat slow burning carbs).
1. I Love Snacking on Nuts
I love walnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, pine nuts, pistachio, etc. I also recently discovered that some of the nuts have chemicals that may act as a anti-depressants. Nuts are also rich in vitamin D and fiber and make excellent healthy snack options.
2. I Load My Smoothes with Green Leafy Veggies
I try and incorporate dark-green leafy vegetables into my daily morning smoothies. Spinach, collards, and kale are important sources of iron and folate. Folate deficiency has been linked to depression, while a lack of iron can also bring the mood down.
3. I Love to Sip on Tea Instead of Coffee
I used to suffer from insomnia, and as the work related stress got worse, so did my intake of coffee to keep energy levels high. I decided to switch to black and green tea that contain moderate amounts of caffeine that boost my dopamine without giving me insomnia. They also carry antioxidants, and I can always mix them with other ingredients to enhance the taste.
4. I Eat Cheese But in Moderation
I love cheese, but I try to limit my intake of dairy products. Cheese is enriched with vitamin D, a lack of which can affect your emotional and physical health. Cottage cheese is also rich in tryptophan, another mood stimulant.
5. My Go to Vegetable for Skin and Salads is Avocado
I love to use avocado everywhere from my salads all the way to my home made masks. Avocado is rich in folate and healthy fats. Foods rich in folate are known to prevent depression.
6. I Snack on Bananas
One of my favorite pre-workout foods is bananas – they are rich in vitamins and prebiotics. Not only do they give us a healthy sugar boost, but they also have been suggested to improve our cognitive abilities and temper.
7. My Breakfast Consists of Oats
Oats have plenty of fiber and iron. Fiber helps keep the intestines clean while iron prevents conditions that can lead to depression. I ear oats for breakfast, lunch, or even as a snack.
8. I Indulge in Dark chocolate
I am a huge fan of dark chocolate (70%+ cacao). Chocolate contains flavonoids that have been suggested to be healthy for ours mind. These flavonoids increase blood flow to the brain while triggering the release of mood-boosting chemicals.