Eat Your Way Happy – Foods to Help Boost Your Mood
Do you find yourself getting annoyed with loved ones or co-workers? At 3pm, do you buy a cup of coffee and a sweet treat as a pick me up? You can avoid the mid-day slump and grumpy mood by making a few changes in your eating plan. Here are the best foods to boost your mood and leave you feeling alert and energized. Your family will thank you, and you may even get that promotion at work!
Salmon and Fatty Fish
Salmon, sardines, and mackerel are great sources of Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3’s are important for brain function, circulation and energy production. As an added benefit, they are also heart healthy! You can easily add some into your mid-day salad or grill up some fish for dinner.
Nuts and Seeds
Walnuts, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds contain tryptophan which increases serotonin in the brain and leaves us feeling happy. Walnuts, pumpkin seeds and flax seeds are also good sources of Omega 3 fatty acids. Additionally, many nuts contain magnesium which helps us relax. Snack on a small handful mid-day for extra feel-good energy.
Lentils and Beans
Legumes help stabilize glucose levels and prevent that mid-afternoon slump. They also provide heart healthy protein and fiber. Enjoy a cup of lentil soup at lunch or toss some chickpeas into your afternoon salad.
Berries help prevent and repair oxidative stress damage which can cause brain cell damage. If you’re feeling stressed, boost your mood by snacking on a cup of berries or adding them to yogurt.
Leafy greens contain folate which helps ease depression. They also pack energy boosting vitamins and minerals such as iron, copper, potassium and phosphorus. Replace the iceberg lettuce in your salad with spinach or kale.
Eggs are a great source of protein and iron. They also contain B vitamins which help convert food into energy. Have a long day ahead? Start your morning with eggs for breakfast to power you through the day.
Sometimes you just need a treat! Dark chocolate has iron and magnesium to keep you energized. Have a square or two of at least 72% cacao, which will help prevent blood sugar spikes.