It happens to all of us; we have a bad day, something goes wrong at work, or we’re just feeling a little down. But instead of reaching for that pint of ice cream to soothe your sadness, try some of these healthy foods to boost your mood. You’ll find that you will definitely feel better in the long run and stay on track with your health and fitness goals. And that’s reason enough to be in a good mood!
Get a little crunch in your life and boost your mood. Researchers show that high intakes of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), a form of omega-3 fat found in walnuts, flaxseeds and chia seeds, can keep you feeling positive and happy. Sprinkle these guys on your oatmeal, have a handful as a snack before you go for an afternoon walk, or enjoy them in this delicious Green Salad with Beets, Oranges, and Walnuts. Sounds good to us!
Go green and enjoy some of these uplifting veggies. These long green stalks are excellent plant-based sources of tryptophan, which increases serotonin levels. What’s so important about serotonin? Well it regulates brain functions such as mood, appetite, sleep, and memory and low levels of serotonin can cause anxiety, depression or moodiness. For a healthy mood-boosting side dish, try these crispy baked asparagus fries. Yum!
Yup! You read that right! It’s okay to indulge in a little chocolate, as long as it’s dark chocolate. This sweet contains mood-boosting compounds such as theobromine and phenylethyamine. And researchers found that eating a little over an ounce of antioxidant-rich dark chocolate daily for two weeks reduced stress hormone levels including cortisol in people with high anxiety. Take a look at some of our favorite chocolate recipes here. We’re already smiling!
Omega 3 fats are one of the most important when it comes to boosting your mood, but unfortunately, most Americans get far too little omega-3 in their diet. And what’s that got to do with your mood? Well recent studies suggest that consuming inadequate amounts of omega-3 fatty acids is associated with depression and poor moods. Try this recipe for grilled salmon tacos and put a smile on your face. 🙂
Not only do these pretty fruits taste delicious as a low calorie dessert, they also help you sleep better, which will make anyone be in a good mood the next day! Cherries are full of the hormone called melatonin, which promotes high quality of sleep. And being well-rested is enough to improve anyone’s mood. But cherries also have some powerful antioxidants to protect your brain from free radicals, which optimizes your brain chemistry to put you in a good mood.
So the next time you’re feeling a little down in the dumps, put these foods on your shopping list and start feeling better the natural way!