10 Mood-Boosting Foods For Your Soul
Finding a good mood booster without negative side effects, later on, can be a challenge. Things like wine and cake feel good at the time, but they will almost always let you down later on. These ten mood-boosting foods are sure to make you feel better now without any of the guilt later.
Walnuts are a powerhouse when it comes to improving your mood. They are filled with mood-boosting compounds including omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B6, and folate. Another awesome aspect of walnuts is that they have a long shelf life and don’t need to be refrigerated so you can easily take them with you on the go.
Like anyone needs to convince you to eat chocolate, right? Not all chocolate is created equal, and milk chocolate can have the opposite effect as high-cocoa dark chocolate. Dark chocolate has been shown to fight depression and reduce stress hormones. It even improves blood flow to the brain, improving mental clarity and fighting that groggy feeling.
Bananas are rich in tryptophan and magnesium which both aid in relaxation. They are also a good source of B6 which helps to alleviate depression. One more thing that makes bananas the perfect mood-boosting food is their versatility; you can bring one with you on the go or add them to your favorite smoothie at home.
Yogurt is yet another source of the mood-boosting chemical tryptophan, but this is just the beginning for this delicious dairy product. Scientists have begun to find links between the probiotics in yogurts and improved mental health. Yogurt is also a great source of calcium; there is a correlation between low calcium levels and an increase in anxiety and depression.
If you were ever stranded on a desert island and there was only one food available you would want it to be the avocado. The reason behind this is that Avocados are packed with everything your body needs to survive including many nutrients that support mental health. Among the vitamins in this wonder fruit are many of the B vitamins that have been shown to boost mood and improve overall mental health and clarity.
Asparagus is a polarizing vegetable, but it should be a part of everyone’s diet. Asparagus is high in serotonin-creating tryptophan, as well as depression-fighting folate. On top of its mental benefits, the nutrients in asparagus also offer a lot of physical benefits as well, and feeling good physically helps boost your mood. The compounds in asparagus have even been shown to cure hangovers which will definitely boost the mood of anyone who needs it.
Anyone who lives with anxiety knows how mentally and physically draining it can be. A surprise anxiety-buster and mood-booster comes in the form of a spoon full of honey. Honey has been used for years as a homeopathic remedy for mental health, but recent science suggests that its rich antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties are most likely the cause of its mood-boosting properties.
Tomatoes are a highly overlooked food when it comes to nutrients. They have been a staple for so long in things like garden salads, salsa, and, of course, ketchup that they have kind of been forgotten about as the super fruit that they are. Much like other foods on this list, tomatoes are rich in B vitamins which promote mental health, but they also have a few extra secret weapons. Tomatoes have high levels of lycopene and beta-carotene, which reduce inflammation and support mental and physical well-being.
Everyone loves blueberries, and it turns out that they are an excellent food to boost your mood almost instantly and protect your brain in the future. The antioxidants in blueberries have been shown to clear toxins from the brain and improve cognitive function and motor skills.
Who would have thought that the perfect mood-boosting food is quietly sitting in almost every home in the world? Chicken eggs have omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, B vitamins, and iodide, all of which are essential for brain health and mood enhancement. On top of that, they are a great low-calorie punch of protein to keep your energy levels up and prevent the “hangry” feeling.
There are plenty of other mood-boosting foods out there but these are some of the best, and the tastiest of the bunch. Most of these foods can be taken with you on the go so you can pop them in your mouth whenever the need arises.
For an added benefit combine two of these foods in a mood-boosting mega surge like yogurt and blueberries or dark chocolate and bananas. These healthy snacks are great for your overall well-being without causing guilt over high-calorie counts.
About The Author
Sam spent most of her childhood in the family kitchen, watching her mother and father prepare traditional Greek dishes. By the time she was 8 she could make spanakopita with her eyes closed. She blogs over at the Kitchen Professor. When she's not prepping meals for her kids, she loves to try out new recipes, cookware and kitchen utensils.