Healthy Food Choices – Mood Choices

Time to point out foods that can help us achieve a desired mood. Depending on our ‘mood-choice’ some food groups can make us feel more relaxed, others can make us feel happy, energetic, focused or even can help us beat depression. Also check out the list of grab-and-go foods including the tips for healthy food choices..

healthy food choices

 

Feeling Tired and Worn Out?

You may have deficiencies in iron and vitamin B12. Leafy greens and sea food can make up for this. Try to combine spinach with bell peppers and tomatoes for vitamin C compensation. Also try to increase the intake of proteins high in B12 by consuming sea food. Meals that contain eggs or lean beef are increasing the levels of the dopamine, known as the ‘happy chemical’ in our brain.

Want some more of that Happiness?

Consume foods rich in B vitamins and Omega-3 fatty acids  found in fish and flax seed. It will protect you from potential depression, the same as hemp and avocado oils would do. The essential fats are crucial for nurturing positive emotions. Vitamin B6 can relieve the PMS symptoms and aids in producing adrenaline. It is found in leafy greens and seeds. Vitamin B12 is found in fish, poultry and meat while asparagus, beans, peas, sunflower seeds and egg yolks are among the previous foods mentioned that contain folate. Folate plays an important role in the fetal development, it’s good for the heart, helps perinatal mood management etc. Keeping blood sugar in balance is resulting with stable moods. This is influenced by Chromium intake which can be found in onions, tomatoes and romaine lettuce.

healthy food choices

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Foods for Students – get Focused while Studying

Tyrosine (amino acid) helps us stay concentrated and focused. Avocados, beans, bananas and poultry contain this secret ingredient that will make you pass the exam. Also Zinc found in seeds, nuts and beans can be considered as part of the back up plan.

Foods that are Protecting us from Depression and Anxiety

Herbal teas like chamomile relieves anxiety and helps our immune system cope with stress if consumed in reasonable dosages. Drinking your tea with few drops of lemon juice is even preferable. Selenium taken as supplement or consumed through whole grains, legumes, red meat, sea food and Brazil nuts, reduces anxiety and fights mild depression. The tyrosine is selenium dependent and the combination of these two increases dopamine – the happy hormone, remember?

healthy food choices

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The Foods that Help us Relax

Magnesium rich food like pumpkin seeds and almonds, accompanied by leafy greens can help us deal with stress. What’s most important, it will help us sleep calmly. Wine is considered as slight ‘depressant’ so having a glass of wine for a calming effect and relaxed mood won’t hurt us. But make sure you stick to just one glass.

 

To get things shorter:

Dark chocolate and cocoa are known as the new anti-anxiety natural drug for calmer nerves.

Bananas sooth the nervous system and keeps or mood positive.

Protein in eggs, cheese or almonds keeps our blood sugar levels stable and gives us additional energy.

Berries especially the purple ones are well known antioxidants that stimulate the production of dopamine. These berries’ pigments is crucial for improving mood, coordination and memory function.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids containing EPA and DHA can help us reduce anxiety and prevents depression. It is found in some fish like salmon, albacore tuna, mackerel and herring. If you can’t cook fish 3 times a week for some reason, take omega-3 supplements.

healthy food choices

Useful Tips:

Stay hydrated! Drink more than 2 l a day. Herbal teas, milk and fresh fruit juices also count.
Say a big NO to instant meals. They are full of sugars and artificial stuff that are so bad for our health, I don’t even want to be reminded of. Cook from scratch instead. If you don’t feel like cooking, prepare yourself a load of fresh salad.

Add some grated flax seed to your healthy shakes.
If you have to choose between dips, eat guacamole.

Satisfy your sugar needs with dark chocolate or a combination of banana, honey and cinnamon.
Set your eye on oats and wholegrain instead of croissant.
Switch your evening coffee with a cup of hot cocoa. It will prevent insomnia.

Don’t skip breakfast! It will keep you concentrated and energetic.
Avoid processed meat and old fermented cheese! Try lean protein and cottage cheese instead. The taste and the health benefits are incomparable.

healthy food choices

via flickr by Gloria García licensed CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Get help if you are a binge eater. Binge eating can make us feel better for a moment but undeniably worse afterwards.
Keep a food diary. Or maybe a mood journal.

Eat small portions and eat them frequently. It’s better than to stuff ourselves 2 times a day.
Say Stop! to emotional eating and turn it into a mindful one. Eat slowly and be aware of every scent, spice and taste of the food in front of you.