Foods That Improve Your Mood: When you’re feeling sad and blue, did you know that you could eat certain foods that will instantly change the way that you feel? Studies that were conducted by the Mayo Clinic reveal certain foods can boost your memory, ease anxiety, reduce stress, and even fight depression.
The trick here is to make certain that you have plenty of these foods that improve your mood and make you feel happy on hand so that you can combat the issue the minute it arises.
Simply add a few of these food items to your grocery list and you should be feeling better in no time at all.
Sprinkling on the Saffron
When you are feeling moody, depressed, or nervous, you could take a very small amount of saffron and place it on your meals to see amazing positive results. According to a recent study that was conducted by Roozbeh Psychiatric Hospital at Tehran University, fifty women were invited to take part in a unique program where they were given saffron capsules to combat their PMS symptoms.
Those women who participated saw amazing results, over 70% saw a decrease in depression and mood swings soon after taking only a micro-pinch of the saffron. The study went on to document that the healing power of saffron is similar to that of Prozac. The spice has the power to work the same mechanisms as the prescribed drug, helping to release more serotonin to the brain and allowing patients to feel instantly better.
Eating Plenty of Whole Foods
Eating more whole foods like vegetables and fruits can certainly have a positive impact on your mood. Today many people are eating too many processed meals and sugary drinks, and the body is suffering as a result. According to research that was published recently in the British Journal of Psychiatry, men, and women who took part in the study who ate more vegetables and fruits this year reported fewer feelings of depression and anxiety than they experienced last year.
Those who took part in the study that ate diets rich in fried foods, high-fat dairy, processes meats, and fried foods, had more cases of anxiety, nervousness, depression, and overwhelm. The reason whole foods have a positive impact on your brain is that they have a high antioxidant content. Vitamin B which is found in citrus, beans, and dark vegetables, has been shown to affect the neurotransmitters that will impact your mood.
The Power of Coconut
According to researchers at Columbia University, even the scent of the coconut can have a positive impact on your brain. When a person is stressed, their fight or flight responses kick in and their brain responds accordingly. Just inhaling the smell of coconut will blunt that defensive response and slow down your heart rate.
The study showed that people who took a breath of the coconut saw their blood pressure levels recover more rapidly than those who did not. By inhaling a pleasant scent, it triggers the brain to be alert and it also soothes the response to stress. If smelling coconut can have that much effect on your mood, imagine how much better you can feel eating more coconut.
Loading Up the Carbs
The Archives of Internal Medicine recently reports that despite popular belief, carbs don’t make you fat and they actually can help boost your mood. The study went on to show that people who took part and only ate a very low-carb diet went on to experience more bouts of anxiety, depression, and anger, compared to those who increased their carb intake. The people who ate a high-carb diet that was focused on beans, fruit, and whole grains had fewer instances of anxiety and depression in that same time frame.
The researchers concluded that the excess carbs were promoting the production of serotonin, the chemical that is released by the brain to allow you to feel good. In order to ensure that you are getting the right amount of carbs, you can speak with your physician about a healthy dietary plan.
Drinking Caffeinated Tea
Chances are you already know all about how drinking tea can alter your mind and put you in a relaxed state for sleeping or battling anxiety. Well, according to information released in the Journal of Medicine, drinking caffeinated oolong, green, or black tea will elicit a more positive and alert state of mind.
The researchers that took part in this study feel that the theanine, or amino acid, in that tea works synergistically to improve focus and attention. In order to enjoy these benefits daily, the study concluded a person would need to drink at least 5 ounces of tea each day. Rather than reaching for that sugary soft drink or energy boost, sipping a cup of warm caffeinated tea will improve your mood and make you feel happy.
Reach for Some Dark Chocolate
Think about how you feel when that piece of Godiva chocolate glides down your tongue and instantly puts you in a state of euphoria. Even watching commercials on television about chocolate put some people in a frenzy. Of all the foods that improve your mood and make you feel happy, chocolate has some of the biggest potential to reduce stress hormones like cortisol. In a study that was conducted in Switzerland at the Nestlé Research Center, the antioxidant properties of dark chocolate are responsible for improving your mood while reducing symptoms associated with depression and anxiety. Reaching for a piece of dark chocolate when feeling sad will immediately trigger the release of hormones that will flood the brain with positive imagery.
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Now that you have a good understanding of the foods that improve your mood and make you feel happy, stock up and keep them within arm’s reach when you are feeling sad or depressed during the day.
Remember that you should not overdo it here, these foods are simply temporary fixes to help jolt you from staying in a depressed state of mind. Once you realize that you can control your emotions with food, you will be able to snap yourself out of those negative states and start conditioning yourself to feel happy more often.