It might be tempting to resort to food to make you feel better when you’re sad. The question is, what food should you turn to? The comfort foods we often resort to might not be the best choice. You are right in thinking that food can boost your mood, though.
Research on the connection between diet and mental health has recently become more prevalent. However, it’s crucial to remember that a variety of variables, including stress, the environment, insufficient sleep, heredity, mood disorders, and dietary deficiencies, can have an impact on mood.
Eating some of those comfort foods, which are typically high in carbs, makes you feel happy because they deliver tryptophan to the brain. An amino acid called tryptophan aids in the body’s production of serotonin, a hormone that improves mood. However, that positive sensation can become addictive, leading to a desire for food that ultimately worsens mood while also raising blood sugar.
Instead, you should focus on other foods to boost your mood in a longer-lasting, healthy way. These foods include the following.
Chocolate, specifically dark chocolate, contains antioxidants that can reduce levels of cortisol. Cortisol is linked to stress levels. Chocolate also contains a type of antioxidant called polyphenols, which are thought to boost your mood. Additionally, a 2010 study suggests that consuming cocoa or foods containing cocoa may improve cardiovascular health due to the flavonoids contained in cocoa.
It’s thought that the omega-3 fatty acids in salmon and other fatty fish may boost your mood. Omega-3 fatty acids are not found naturally in our bodies. These nutrients might be linked to dopamine and serotonin in our brains, which directly impact our emotions and mood. Experts also believe that regularly eating mackerel, tuna, and herring, in addition to salmon, can help lower anxiety.
The antioxidant content of blueberries surpasses that of any other popular fruit or vegetable, providing a wealth of advantages for improving memory. Blueberries aid in mood regulation, memory enhancement, and brain aging prevention mostly because of a class of antioxidants called flavonoids. According to some experts, they might even do more. According to recent research, blueberries’ anti-inflammatory compounds may be effective in treating PTSD and other severe mental health issues.
Adding these three foods to your diet can greatly increase your mood, as well as put you on the path to healthier eating. Next time you feel the need to choose comfort food, lean toward these and enjoy everything they have to offer.