Health & Fitness
All about Better Health and Fitness

Food for the mood

Recently there has been a lot of study into whether food can alter your mood and mental well being. Researchers are currently validating this hypothesis to see if there is actually a link between what we eat and how we feel. Changing your diet can affect your metabolism and brain chemistry, scientist have speculated that this may also affect your energy level and mood. Have a read through this article to learn more about these studies and how you can benefit.

Firstly, it is important to understand how your food can boost energy. Basically there are three types of energy providing foods; those that do so by providing sufficient calories, stimulant types of compounds in food such as caffeine and foods that cause your metabolism to convert the food to energy more efficiently. When we want to take our mood into account we must consider what happens in our brain and body to make us feel good, these are chemicals such as serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine and maintaining a healthy blood sugar level.

Carbohydrates may be the fad of many diets but they are our bodies preferred source of food. They are slow releasing energy level boosters and they affect our mood. Avoiding sweets and sugar filled treats helps to regulate our blood sugar levels avoiding fatigue and moodiness. Nuts are also a great source of magnesium and protein. Magnesium plays an important role in our body’s chemistry and helps to convert sugar into energy. Nuts were one of the staple diets of hunter gatherer ancestors and play a safe and nutritious part of our diet.

Lean meats such as skinless chicken and turkey, lean pork and beef contain good amounts of protein. These proteins contain amino acids that help to increase your level of dopamine and norepinephrine. Lean meats also help to combat insomnia and depression by being a great source of vitamin B 12.

Fish is one of the healthiest foods on our planet and can work wonders on your physical and mental health once it is consumed in moderation. Fatty oily fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel are rich in Omega-3 essential acids. Some studies claim this may be useful for combating depression  but its main benefit is in aiding heart health.

Leafy, dark vegetables are another source of omega-3. These include spinach, romaine lettuce, Brussels’ sprouts and celery.  These vegetables are also a great source of folate which is thought to combat the risk of depression. Nuts and fresh fruit are also a source of folate.

The next item in the list is; you guessed it, Water. This really should have been number one but for some reason I left it until the end. Dehydration goes hand in hand with almost every negative condition you can think off. Dehydration causes fatigue, energy loss, slows metabolism and some studies even suggest depression. The solution though is simple as you all know; I’ll mention it just in case. Drink a glass of room temperature water every hour during the day.

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