For a long time now, the scientists have been trying to distinguish how the food we eat affect our mood during the day and our mental condition in a longer interval of time.
The latest research is getting more and more accurate and in this article, I would like to tell you what the “smart guys” found out: what is good for your mental health and what is harmful. Here are some groups of products and the effect they are making on your mood.
Turkey and chicken: These products contain Tryptophan, which is a good source of mood enhancer. The shortage of this amino acid is quite common in blood of people suffering from the depression.Caffeine: we all know how this stimulant affects our bodies. You can turn from sleepy into mentally alert in a couple of minutes. However, if you use too much of it, it can cause you insomnia, mood swings and anxiety known as the effects of “caffeine hangover”. Do not forget that the caffeine is a drug to which you can become addicted by drinking only 2-3 cups of coffee a day.
Chocolate: The popular opinion, which states that the chocolate is a “happy food”, actually is absolute truth. Chocolate increases the level of endorphins in your brain, which increases your libido and may act as an antidepressant.
After continuing studies of female chocolate cravings, some scientists think there are two products that influence that: sugar and fat. Sugar has the ability to calm you and the fats elevate your mood. This means that the unique combination of these products in chocolate is the key to why it is so pleasurable to eat chocolate.
Low fat diets: these diets can make you depressed. As I have written above – fats elevate your mood, without it, you will constantly feel under the weather.
Balanced diets: the best source of vitamins and minerals is from a balanced and varied diet of health-supporting foods. However, you may need to supplement your diet with extra nutrients. It is important to get the correct balance between different vitamins and minerals, and to avoid taking any one nutrient in excess.
So the real question is can you design you mood accordingly to what you have to do during the day? The answer is obvious – of course, you can. The first advice would be to try to keep your blood sugar levels leveled by eating the food, which is digested slowly like oats or rye bread, and try to avoid foods like baguettes.
If you had a stressful day at work or at home, you might choose a carbohydrate rich snack in the afternoon to elevate your mood - like popcorn. However, if you have an important and concentration related meeting in the late afternoon you better choose a protein rich food like yogurt.
Always ask yourself is this food going to alter my mood during the day and is it going to help it? If not, just do not eat it. Try to balance your diet according to your needs and never underestimate the effect of the food you eat on your mood.