Recently, the so-called diet for a good mood is gaining popularity. What is it: the next marketing move or the relationship between our mood and the diet actually exists?
The theory that food can affect a person's mood is based on the fact that certain chemicals in food can activate certain processes in the brain. Scientists are still studying the relationship between food and human mood, but in recent years they have already managed to make a lot of interesting discoveries.
How to maintain a good mood with food
Eat often, but in small portions.
Scientists from the University of Illinois found that regular meals can maintain a good mood. The whole reason is the level of sugar in the blood. If the body regularly receives food, the amount of glucose in the bloodstream is maintained at a stable level, which in turn also affects the person’s well-being and mood. At the same time, experts advise to pay attention to portions of food eaten, as overeating or hunger, on the contrary, have a bad effect on mood.
Do not give up carbohydrates
One of the main substances that our body needs to maintain a good mood is the amino acid tryptophan. The more tryptophan penetrates the brain, the more serotonin is synthesized from it - the hormone of happiness. A person can get tryptophan from almost any protein food. But what have the carbs, you ask. And the thing is this. So that tryptophan could penetrate the brain, the body needs not only proteins, but also carbohydrates. It is best to choose foods containing complex carbohydrates (cereals, vegetables, legumes, fruits).
Eat protein foods.
Protein food is indispensable for creating a good mood. Due to the protein diet in the body increases the production of dopamine and norepinephrine. Scientists have discovered that after eating poultry, seafood, eggs, natural yogurt and tofu, the mood rises, energy is increased and this condition persists for several hours after eating.
Include in the diet of omega-3
In recent years, scientists have regularly found evidence that food containing omega-3 fatty acids helps to overcome depression. Therefore, people who want to keep their mood at a height, it is useful at least once a week to eat sea fish, walnuts, linseed oil.
Do not skip breakfast
According to some researchers, daily consumption of breakfast, leads to improved mood, memory and general well-being throughout the day.
Follow the Mediterranean diet
The Mediterranean diet is considered the most balanced and healthy nutrition program, following which you can provide the body with all the necessary substances. One of the advantages of this diet is the prevention of depression. Scientists believe that the reason for this effect is the rich content in the Mediterranean diet of folic acid and vitamin B12.
There are several vitamins that can directly affect a person's mood. Take at least vitamin D. Its deficiency in the body can cause seasonal affective disorder (atypical depression). However, vitamin D is one of the few that a person can get without any effort. The main thing is to spend at least 15 minutes a day in the sun. Dietary sources of this vitamin are eggs and dairy products.
The second important vitamin for mood is B9, which is also folic acid. To restore the reserves of this substance, and at the same time to improve the mood, you can regularly eat leafy vegetables, oranges, lentils, broccoli and oatmeal. The third mood vitamin is B12. Its sources are salmon, lean beef, cottage cheese.
Choose foods rich in selenium
Data from various scientific studies suggest that a lack of selenium in the body causes deterioration of mood and a tendency to depression. Experts advise every day to use at least 55 micrograms of this element in order to maintain the psycho-emotional state. Good sources of selenium: shellfish, sea and freshwater fish, nuts and seeds, lean meat, cereals, beans, low-fat dairy products.
Do not abuse coffee
An overuse of caffeine-containing beverages can be the cause of a bad mood. The fact is that caffeine causes excessive excitation of the nervous system, and if you drink a caffeine-containing drink in the evening, then it is likely that you will have a sleepless night, which also adversely affects your morning mood.
Overweight and mood
Rarely what woman will please if the scales indicate the presence of excess weight. But as it turned out, those extra pounds, weak physical activity and regular overeating, can actually lead to the development of clinical depression. This was told by experts from the Center for Health Research (Seattle), after having studied data from more than 4,600 women aged 40 to 65 years. Changes in the psycho-emotional state are observed even in people with a slight excess of the norm of body weight, not to mention the more advanced stages of obesity. The danger of this relationship is that overweight and depression “feed” each other and it is very difficult to break this circle. Obese people are not recommended to lose weight dramatically. To improve not only the appearance, but also the mood, not a very strict diet, moderate exercise and slow but steady weight loss are more suitable.
Food for ...
... relaxation and tranquility
Pumpkin seeds, almonds, leafy greens. Greens and pumpkin seeds can rightly be called a storehouse of magnesium. And this mineral is known for its beneficial effects on the nervous system. It is the magnesium preparations that doctors attribute to patients under stress and nervousness. Scientists say, if you use 150 mg of magnesium per day, you can significantly improve your emotional state. In addition, almonds and pumpkin seeds increase the level of tryptophan and gamma-aminobutyric acid in the body - substances indispensable for calming down.
Wine. If you drink a glass (but not more) of red or white wine, you can reduce the level of adrenaline in the body, which results in calming and improving the work of the brain.
Asparagus, peas, beans, egg yolks, spinach, sunflower seeds, fish, red meat, poultry. Researchers say that if you want to feel happier, add to your diet more food containing folic acid (asparagus, peas, beans, egg yolks, spinach, liver, sunflower seeds), vitamin B6 (leafy greens, seeds) and vitamin B12 ( meat, fish, poultry). The reason is that the B vitamins lead to a decrease in the level of homocysteine. Homocysteine is an amino acid produced by our body.
If its amount exceeds the norm, depression begins.
Leafy greens, nuts, legumes, eggs. These products contain a large amount of vitamins from group B, which are necessary for producing serotonin, a hormone that is responsible for calming and reducing anxiety. By the way, scientists have found that serotonin is produced worse in female organisms than in male organisms, therefore, women of the weaker sex are more prone to depression and anxiety.
Onions, lettuce, tomatoes. The chromium contained in these products is necessary for the production of insulin, which regulates blood sugar levels. Keeping sugar in balance is the key to a stable mood. In addition, chromium activates the production of serotonin. By the way, in 2003, researchers found that in most cases the cause of mood swings (atypical depression) is chromium deficiency in the body.
Fish, flax seeds, some oils. Omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in large quantities in sea fish, flax seeds, hemp oil and avocado, can protect against depression. In addition, to get rid of the bad mood, it is useful to eat foods rich in vitamin D (fatty sea fish: tuna, mackerel, mackerel, sardines, herring). By the way, as it turned out, in countries where it is common to consume a lot of fish and seafood, fewer people suffer from depression and other mental disorders. In addition, suicide rates are much lower in these countries.
Bird, red meat, whole grains, clams. The amino acid tryptophan found in clams, red meat and poultry also activates the production of serotonin. When tryptophan in the body decreases, the person becomes prone to depressive conditions and is rarely in a good mood. But in order for the body to properly absorb tryptophan from food, meat and seafood must be combined with carbohydrates (rice or other grains).
... increase energy
Spinach, sweet peppers, clams and seafood. Lack of iron and vitamin B12 can cause anemia, which is accompanied by loss of strength, general weakness, sad mood. If you notice these signs behind you, add to your regular diet more protein foods containing vitamin B12. These can be oysters, mussels, octopus, liver, spinach and other leafy vegetables. But at the same time, remember that for better absorption of iron, the body needs vitamin C. Therefore, for example, to the meat, you can serve the Bulgarian pepper and tomatoes.
Eggs and lean beef. These products are rich in amino acid tyrosine, which is necessary to increase the level of dopamine - the hormone of joy, happiness and satisfaction with life.
... mindfulness and concentration
Avocados, bananas, beans, poultry. These four products contain tyrosine, which is necessary for the synthesis of dopamine and norepinephrine. The presence of these hormones in the body in sufficient quantities makes a person more attentive and alert.
Seeds, nuts, beans. It is very useful to use these products containing zinc together with marine fish rich in omega-3. The fact is that zinc reacts with fatty acids, as a result of which the body produces prostaglandin hormones, which are responsible for concentration. In addition, it is known that zinc has the properties of an antidepressant, and people who are in a state of mental balance, as a rule, are more attentive and concentrated than in a state of depression.
Water. Dehydration can also lead to impaired attention. Therefore, to maintain concentration, it is useful to drink at least 8 glasses of water daily.
Food against anxiety and depression
Chamomile tea with a slice of lemon. Herbal teas are one of the best natural sedatives, and vitamin C, contained in lemon, helps the adrenal glands and immune system to cope with stress. In addition, during the period of nervous shocks in the body, the reserves of ascorbic acid quickly deteriorate, so it is very important to restore the balance of nutrients in time.
Seafood, red meat, whole grains, legumes. These products contain an impressive supply of selenium, which alleviates anxiety and alleviates the effects of depression. Researchers at the University of Texas found that it was enough to consume foods rich in selenium for 2 months to relieve depression.
Mood impairment products
While some products contribute to a good mood, others, on the contrary, can have a depressive effect. According to scientists, simple carbohydrates are the worst for mood, and to be more precise, the abuse of food containing simple sugars. This list includes sweets, sweet soda, jams and other sweets. The reason is that fast carbohydrates cause sugar jumps in the bloodstream, which, in turn, affects mood.
The second group of products that can cause a bad mood is alcohol. Scientists have long found evidence that alcohol, contrary to popular belief, does not improve the psycho-emotional state, but rather leads to depression. Of course, one glass of wine or one glass of something stronger will not turn you into a depressive person, but in the case of alcohol abuse, not only trivial mood swings are possible, but also serious mental illnesses.
Many of us used to seize stress and bad mood. But very few people know that usually the products chosen for this mission are not something that does not improve their well-being, but can aggravate the depression even more. Remember: we are what we eat, and even our mood depends on the contents of the plate.