Research continues to reveal a link between what we eat and how we feel, with evidence suggesting that making changes to your diet can impact your metabolism, brain chemistry, mood and energy levels. Below, we list some of our favourite foods to trigger those feel good hormones and keep blood sugar steady:
Almonds, cashews and hazelnuts
These three nuts are big in protein and magnesium, a mineral that helps to convert sugar into energy. Individuals who are low in magnesium might find that they are low in energy – so snacking on nuts throughout the day is a great way to keep levels topped up.
Lean beef, pork, chicken and turkey are all fantastic sources of protein that include the amino acid tyrosine. This amino acid helps to boost chemicals in the brain that help you feel more focused and alert. Many types of meat also contain vitamin B12, which helps to ward off insomnia and depression.
Good news for all of the chocolate lovers out there – thanks to the stimulant theobromine along with the caffeine present in chocolate, a little piece now and again can promote both mood and energy.
Fatty fish like salmon is packed with omega-3 fatty acid, which helps to protect against depression.
The nutrient folate is a wonder component found in leafy green veg such as lettuce and spinach and is thought to help lower the risk of depression.
Ensuring you stay well hydrated can help you to avoid becoming lethargic as the day goes on. Many studies have suggested that dehydration can slow down the metabolism and suck up energy, so keeping your water levels topped up could help you to get through the day without feeling tired.
To find out more about how eating well can promote good mental health, see our fact-sheet for further information.
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