Foods for Your Moods

healthy lifeAs the seasons shift, we may find that our moods shift too. It is inevitable that with shorter, cooler, and darker days our moods may reflect a similar temperament. While our mind and body adjust to the seasonal changes, we can give ourselves a helping hand by eating foods that boost our mental well-being. Vitamin C Vitamin C: This feel good vitamin will enhance your immune system and give you that extra bit of energy when your head feels cloudy and your body feels lethargic.
  • Reach for apples, asparagus, berries, broccoli, cabbage, melon (cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon), cauliflower, citrus fruits (lemons, limes, oranges), kiwi, dark leafy greens, bell peppers, potatoes and tomatoes.
red rice in a wooden bowl isolated on white Eat your carbs! Complex carbohydrates are a comforting source of fuel, particularly during times when our moods feel low. Good quality carbohydrates help our brain produce serotonin, a mood-boosting and calm-inducing neurotransmitter. Complex carbohydrates also help with our concentration and energy levels, the perfect antidote to shorter days and busier schedules.
  • Seek out complex carbohydrates such as steel cut oats, whole grain breads, brown, black and red rice, millet, spelt, kamut, sweet potatoes and winter squash.
Seetang B Vitamins: Get your Bs, in particular Vitamin B12 and Folate (Vitamin B9), which are crucial for our mental health. B vitamins are essential components for the production and functioning of several neurotransmitters such as dopamine, which stimulate pleasure and a sense of happiness.
  • B Vitamins can be found in dark greens, soy (choose fermented soy products such as tempeh and miso), sprouts, asparagus, beans, legumes, cheese, grass-fed beef, fish (choose fatty fish such as Arctic char, wild salmon, sardines, mackerel, and black cod which are high in omega 3s-a mood boosting bonus!), organic chicken, and organic eggs. If you are vegan, it is important to ensure that you are getting B12 in your diet. Before considering a supplement for B12, incorporate sea vegetables (seaweed) and nutritional yeast into your diet.
Filling in glass of water Stay hydrated: It is just as important to stay hydrated in the cooler months as it is during summer months. All too often we are going about our days without proper fluid intake, which could lead to irritability and sluggishness. We may not desire the same amount of liquid as we do during the hot days of summer, which can wreak havoc on our mental clarity. A good technique is to drink warm drinks throughout the day. Opt for herbal teas, such as mint, chamomile, nettle, honeybush, tulsi, and rooibos, which each have their own helpful mood-boosting properties in addition to keeping you hydrated. Jaime Slavin is a nutritionist, guide, coach, motivator, educator and an advocate for your health and well-being.

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