Food and Mood
Are you curious about how food can affect mood? Would you like help in making healthier food choices? Are you interested in learning about how health coaching can help you make your own healthy changes?
Ever notice how tired and sluggish you get after eating a big pasta meal or fast food burger? Or how amped you feel for about 20 minutes after eating a donut or drinking soda but then feel like you need more sugar to keep going or else you’ll crash? Or how too much caffeine and alcohol can make you agitated and affect your sleep?
No doubt food can affect mood but mood can also affect our food choices.
Think about how if you’ve had a bad day at work, all you might feel like having is a bowl of ice cream or chocolate. Or when you’re bored, you may tend to eat whatever’s around, even if you’re not hungry.
There are many studies that associate certain minerals and vitamins with depression and anxiety. To optimize health and mood, it’s best to stick with nutrient-dense foods so you can get the most bang for your buck.
5 Ways to Improve Mood with Food
Here’s a short list to help you get started on improving your mood with food:
- Limit caffeine and alcohol to 1 cup/day or avoid all together.
- Avoid processed foods and refined sugar/carbohydrates like bread, pasta, cereals, snack foods or anything packaged. They can make you feel tired and irritable.
- Eat more dark green leafy vegetables like kale, collard greens, and broccoli. These are among the most nutrient-dense foods that are packed with antioxidants, folate, and vitamin B12 which have been associated with improving mood.
- Add legumes (beans, peas, lentils, etc) into your diet. They are protein-rich and high in selenium, folate, vitamin B6, and tryptophan.
- Walnuts are a great brain food, high in omega-3, folate, and serotonin to make you feel better. Nature didn’t make them look like brains for nothing!
Do you want to learn more about which foods are best for you? Do you want to explore how your mood affects your cravings and food choices? Send me a message here to schedule an integrative health consultation today!