Did you know that certain foods can affect the way you feel? Researchers have discovered that our diets may help reduce stress and fight depression.
Try a few of our favorite foods to boost your mood and calm your state of mind — naturally.
Fruits and Veggies
We already know how beneficial fresh produce is to our physical health, but it turns out these superfoods are mood boosting foods as well. According to a new study, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables on a daily basis can actually lead to overall improved mood and happiness.
There’s a slight catch — the overall improvement in happiness doesn’t happen automatically, but eating plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, like broccoli, pears and strawberries, can prevent those bad days in the future.
Need some inspiration? Try this cucumber tomato avocado salad, which is full of healthy fats and superfood veggies. You’ll love this easy side dish alongside almost any entree. Bonus points? Avocados contain tyrosine, an amino acid that can boost dopamine levels, according to Mental Health Daily.
Looking for a boost right now? In healthy moderation, chocolate has been shown to be quite the superfood, being both packed with antioxidants and the ability to have a positive influence on your mood, reports the National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Don’t head to the vending machine to scoop up a chocolate bar just yet. The sugar in many processed chocolate candies could make your mood worse. For a chocolate indulgence without the processed sugar or flours, try this recipe for clean and fudgy dark chocolate frosted brownies.
Foods Rich in Folate
Folate is well-known as an important nutrient during pregnancy, but did you know that this vitamin is critical to mood as well? According to a study published in The Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, a lack of folate can lead to depression.
Luckily, getting more folate is easy. A wide variety of foods are rich in this nutrient, including lentils, black-eyed peas, spinach, mangoes, asparagus and avocado.
For a major dose of folate, try sauteed spinach in lemon juice. The vitamin C from the lemon helps the absorption of the iron in the spinach, too, so this recipe serves double duty!
If you’re feeling low, why not turn to foods to boost your mood? These mood-boosting foods are healthy for both your mind and body, so give them a try. We think you’ll like how you feel!
Consult your doctor before beginning any diet or exercise program.
Get more information about specific health terms, topics and conditions to better manage your health on bcbst.com. BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee members can access wellness-related discounts on fitness products, gym memberships, healthy eating and more through Blue365®. BCBST members can also find tools and resources to help improve health and well-being by logging into BlueAccess and going to the Managing Your Health tab.