The Interesting Connection Between Your Food And Mood
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The world is divided into two categories of individuals. First, there are some who eat everything in sight when they are worried. Then, there are those who entirely quit eating. Food can be a vital part of our emotional responses - binge eating, comfort eating, and so on. But did you know that what and how you eat has an impact on your mood? That is why, when you are feeling down, going for a candy bar may not be the best option. This is why.

Your brain works around the clock. It is present in the background whether you are awake or asleep, assisting you to breathe, move, feel, and do so much more. But what powers this beast? Of course, food. Your brain requires calories to function and achieve its best.

Is it important where you receive your calories? Yes. Consider your brain a vehicle. If you feed it low-quality fuel, it won’t be long before the engine starts sputtering or it won’t travel as far. If you replace it with high-quality equipment, you’ll have a longer, smoother ride. Which would you choose? The same is true for your body. Add in low-quality fuel, and empty calories from refined foods high in fats, sweets, and other unsavoury ingredients, and you’ll feel miserable.

You may be wondering how the food you eat might affect your mood. Surprisingly, the stomach has 90% of the serotonin receptors. Serotonin receptors control the release of serotonin and other neurotransmitters such as dopamine and acetylcholine, which has a substantial impact on a person’s mood. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter found in the brain that regulates happiness, anxiety, and mood. Low serotonin levels have been linked to sadness, mood fluctuations, and anxiety disorders. To put it simply, what goes into the stomach interacts with the brain.

According to research, eating a balanced diet and having a healthy gut reduces the chance of developing depression. Furthermore, some foods contain nutrients that can aid in the prevention and treatment of moderate depression. Mussels, oysters, salmon, spinach, watercress, cauliflower, romaine lettuce, and strawberries can all aid in the prevention of depression.

However, keep in mind that eating the correct meals is simply one component of preventing or treating depression. Exercise, having the correct coping mechanism, receiving support from loved ones, and counselling or treatment are all ways to prevent mental health problems.

Foods that lift your mood:

1. Dark chocolate

Chocolate has numerous mood-enhancing chemicals. Because sugar is a quick source of fuel for your brain, it may enhance your mood. Furthermore, it may cause a cascade of feel-good substances to be released, such as caffeine, theobromine, and N-acylethanolamine — a chemical related to cannabinoids that have been associated with increased mood.

2. Fermented foods

Fermented foods - such as kimchi, yoghurt, kefir, and kombucha - may benefit gut health and mood. The fermentation process promotes the growth of living bacteria in meals, which can then convert carbohydrates into alcohol and acids. Probiotics are produced during this process. These living microorganisms promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in your stomach and may boost serotonin levels. It is crucial to remember that not all fermented foods are high in probiotics, such as beer, some breads, and wine, due to boiling and filtration.

3. Berries

Surprisingly, eating more fruits and vegetables has been linked to lower depression rates. Although the mechanism is unknown, a diet high in antioxidants may aid in the management of inflammation linked to depression and other mood disorders. Berries are high in antioxidants and phenolic compounds, which help fight oxidative stress – an imbalance of damaging substances in the body.

4. Coffee

Who doesn’t know what coffee is and what it contains? It is one of the most popular drinks, arguably the most. It basically starts our day. Caffeine in coffee stops adenosine, a naturally occurring molecule, from connecting to brain receptors that increase weariness, therefore enhancing alertness and attentiveness. Furthermore, it promotes the release of mood-enhancing neurotransmitters including dopamine and norepinephrine.

5. Bananas

Bananas can help make a bad mood better. They’re abundant in Vitamin B6, which aids in the production of feel-good neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin. Bananas are high in both sugar and fibre. Sugar is slowly released into the bloodstream when combined with fibre, allowing for more stable blood sugar levels and better mood management. Low blood sugar levels can cause irritability and mood swings.