Food is more than a delicious way to be energized and satisfied, it’s also full of healthy benefits for our whole body. In fact, some of our favorite snacks can also put us in a way better mood.
Next time you are feeling kind of run down and looking for a quick snack, don’t go for what’s easy and fast, or simply what tastes good (though that’s a plus). Choose food that will make you feel good, from the inside out.
The right ingredients can make a world of difference in our body, including our mood and mind. “Nutrients provide the biological building blocks for neurotransmitters — the chemicals in your brain that deeply affect how you think and feel,” says Florencia Tagliavini, in-house nutritionist for The NutraMilk.
Here are some foods to lift your mood:
1. Pumpkin seeds
Toast some pumpkin seeds and toss them on top of a salad, or throw them in a trail mix. They are delicious and so good for us.
“These are a source of the amino acid, tryptophan which is used to produce serotonin, a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep and appetite, mediate moods, and inhibit pain,” said Tagliavini.
2. Dark chocolate
Chocolate is everyone’s favorite treat, so it make come as no surprise that it can lift your mood, but chocolate is also good for you in so many ways.
“Cacao is high in magnesium and releases serotonin in our body making us feel excited and happy,” says Liana Werner-Gray, author of Cancer Free with Food.
Don’t feel guilty about paying extra for guac! Load up on avocado — it has lots of benefits.
“Avocado contain trytophan, an essential amino acid used by the brain to produce serotonin, which makes the central nervous system feel really good,” said Werner-Gray.
If you want to boost your mood, now’s the time to make that lemon vinaigrette for your salad or mix up some lemonade.
“Lemon is a nutritional powerhouse, loaded with vitamin C. It’s a wise way to start each day with lemon water to help flush the liver. A fresh liver equals a clear positive mind. A toxic liver leads to brain fog,” said Werner-Gray.
5. Green tea
Drinking tea is a great, comforting habit for everyone, and green tea takes things to the next level.
“Green tea is full of theanine, which is known to lower stress and increase energy,” said Werner-Gray.
6. Broccoli sprouts
Whether broccoli slaw or in a salad, broccoli spouts are packed with mood-lifting nutrients.
“Broccoli sprouts have the highest amount of sulforaphane than any other green vegetable on the planet! Broccoli sprouts help release tension and irritability,” said Werner-Gray.
Kale caesar, did you say?
“Packed full of chlorophyll which helps the brain function properly and wards off depression. I’ve made sure to chlorophyll everyday for the last ten years and is the number 1 compound I recommend everyone get daily,” says Werner-Gray.
Tigernuts are a root vegetable and naturally sweet. They can boost your feelings of strength and happiness.
“They have the same amount of iron as red meat! The iron in tigernuts makes us feel strong and adapt to get through the day, staying happy and not being affected,” says Werner-Gray.
No, we’re not nuts. Nuts are where it’s at — and walnuts especially.
“Walnuts are rich in B vitamins and omega 3’s which are key for brain positivity. Walnuts help fight fatigue and anxiety,” says Werner-Gray.
Blueberry waffles, blueberry yogurt, blueberry pie. This fruit is essential in summer and so good for you.
“A superfruit with the highest amount of antioxidants than any other commercially farmed fruit on earth! When we eat Nature’s candy like this we don’t have any guilt,” says Werner-Gray.
Who can say no to guilt-free sweets?!