Feeling moody? We all have those bummer days, but if you’re feeling down and anxious more often than not it’s time to make some changes. Your mood is a direct result of many factors, some out of your control but many within! Food is a huge factor in how you feel. You have probably experienced that you just feel better when you’re in a healthy food and exercise groove. You’re more energized, sharper in meetings, wittier on dates, and feel better in your clothes. But beyond “healthy eating”, there are several legit MOOD FOODS that can drastically stabilize and improve how you feel. Nothing against medication when needed, but I consider taking these foods daily as my natural anti-depressants.
PROBIOTIC SUPPLEMENT & FERMENTED FOODS: Your gut is your second brain, and all your happy neurotransmitters begin here. So it’s essential you’re on a great probiotic supplement (I love ReNew life brand) and eat at least one fermented food daily like miso, kombucha, yogurt, pickled veggies or sauerkraut, kimchi, or kefir.
OMEGA 3’s: Our brain is 60% fat! And mood and memory are drastically improved when adding these babies to your diet. Omega 3’s are the good fats found in fish, walnuts, chia and hemp seeds. If you don’t eat fish regularly, I’d supplement this with Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega 3.
CHOCOLATE: Yes, you read that right! Chocolate makes the list (hopefully that makes you happy). But it must be >70% dark chocolate and portion controlled! Chocolate contains b6, an energy vitamin, and phenethylamine, a compound considered an aphrodisiac or “the love drug” because of mood and mojo boosting benefits. 1 oz a day keeps the crankiness away.
WATER: Boring, I know, but every cell in your gorgeous glowing body depends on being adequately hydrated, and very few of us are. Water makes us more awake and energized and is a super simple (and free) mood booster. If water “bores you”, whip a batch of spa water (add cucs, lemon, mint etc) and leave on your desk to remind you to drink. Sparkling water and tea count too. Aim for 80 oz/day.
MAGNESIUM: This is the chill out mineral and when stress and cortisol levels rise, mag is the first thing to get depleted. It’s found in pumpkin seeds, dark leafy greens, beans and my all time favorite drinkable supplement, Natural Calm. I take a pouch nightly. Magnesium helps relax you and if you can relate to feeling all wound up as well as constipated, you will get double the benefits.
TURMERIC: I saved my favorite for last -- Research shows this orange spice has benefits similar to Prozac in higher doses. This is nature’s ultimate anti depressant. Sneak it in everywhere from smoothies and juices to salad dressings and marinades (but beware, it can turn your hands yellow and screw up your manicure so use a spoon). The crème de la crème brand is Wakaya turmeric which has 5x the active compound (curcumin). Get turmeric in every day. The results are subtle but long lasting.
I hate to be the fun police but there are also a few things I recommend trying to skip if you’re feeling The Blah’s (and limiting in general): excess sugar, caffeine and booze. When you’re down these will make you feel even downer.
So those are my top mood foods. Include at least one (major bonus points for all 6) daily, and as many veggies as possible. Also, make sure you are getting in some exercise that you love too – there’s nothing like endorphins to make you feel great. Happier days ahead!!
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