Yes I meant what I said in that title, but I am not talking about a pint of Ben and Jerry’s, unfortunately.
This is our first in the series of anxiety-crushing posts, and today it’s all about food. The way you eat, and what you eat can dramatically affect your mood. My job has been so hectic lately and I find it’s WAY harder to keep my cool when I’m hungry. Or hangry, perhaps? You know exactly what I’m talking about. And there is a reason for that. Your brain cannot function with low blood sugar. Constant blood sugar spikes and valleys can send you into into an emotional roller coaster. You want to maintain consistent blood sugar throughout the day by eating consistently every few hours (especially when you’re hungry!) and avoiding cheap carbs like processed foods that create quick spikes in blood sugar and insulin.
There are also plenty of foods that have been shown to support serotonin production (a neurotransmitter in your brain that contributes to a feeling of well-being):
–Bananas, peas and turnips all produce tryptophan, which the brain uses to help produce serotonin
-Foods high in complex carbohydrates, like beans, potatoes, rice and whole grains, help the body properly absorb tryptophan.
-Vitamin B6, found in bananas, potatoes and salmon, assists in the production of serotonin, dopamine, melatonin and other brain chemicals that control mood.
-Levels of omega 3 fatty acids found in fatty fish and shellfish have been directly correlated to depression, as these are essential for normal brain function. Vegetarians don’t fret! You can also find these fatty acids in foods like algae, nuts, nut oils, hemp seeds, walnuts, chia seeds and flax seeds.
-Also consider removing meat from your diet, or at least decreasing it. When cows are being forced into the slaughterhouse, they panic, knowing what’s going to happen to them. This increases their fight or flight hormones, which floods their tissues, and those hormones are passed on to you as you eat them.
Eating a balanced, healthy diet in general can directly impact your serotonin levels, because Scientific American says that 95% of your serotonin is found in the gut. So a happy digestive system = a happy you.
Want more proof? Check out this study:
“In a study of 200 people done in England for the mental health group known as Mind, participants were told to cut down on mood “stressors” they ate, while increasing the amount of mood “supporters.” Stressors included sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and chocolate (more of that coming up). Supporters were water, vegetables, fruit, and oil-rich fish.
Eighty-eight percent of the people who tried this reported improved mental health. Specifically, 26% said they had fewer mood swings, 26% had fewer panic attacks and anxiety, and 24% said they experienced less depression” (WedMD).
No one’s diet is perfect. I think we’ve all figured that out by now. I got half way through writing this post before realizing that I hadn’t eaten dinner yet, and that I should probably not wait until I was starving. But if you’re feeling out of whack, consider upping these mood-enhancing foods and it could make a difference!
Next week we’ll talk about using herbs to supplement your already stellar diet!
See you then!
P.S. The tapping world summit is still going for a couple more days. That means you still have time to check out this life-altering technique.