Food plays an important role in one’s health. Healthy food protects against the risk of physical health problems. Our food choices affect our mood, sleeping patterns, energy levels, and overall general health. While some food items boost your mood, energy, and concentration level, others can also have the opposite effect.
In a conversation with The Indian Express, Jyoti Bhatt, a dietitian at Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre said, “Foods play a major role in balancing our various moods — either happy, angry, anxious, sad, or depressed.” She added that researchers have studied few foods that can be linked with brain health.
According to the report in the English daily, here’s a list of a few food items and nutrients that play a role in boosting the mood.
Dark chocolate: Cocoa is rich in tryptophan that is used by one’s brain to produce serotonin, which is a key hormone to stabilize mood.
Green tea: It helps to boost brain function. Caffeine content present in it, helps a person feel alert and also improves memory.
Bell pepper is an essential nutrient for brain function and development. It also helps the body to produce mood-influencing hormones.
Omega-3 rich foods help in lowering depression, and other mental and behavioural conditions. Nuts, flax seeds, salmon, and chia seeds are well-known sources.
Fermented foods such as buttermilk, sauerkraut, miso, vegetables, and yoghurt are important to maintaining gut health as they are rich in probiotics. These are crucial for lifting one’s mood.
Nuts are loaded with many minerals, vitamins, magnesium and also contain antioxidant properties. They are considered equally important to lift one’s mood.
Green leafy vegetables like methi and spinach contain B-vitamin folate, and deficiency of B-vitamin folate can hinder the metabolism of dopamine, serotonin, and noradrenaline.
Caffeine is great to improve one’s mood and performance by releasing dopamine, a brain chemical. Choose lower-caffeine beverages like black tea or green tea, if caffeine makes you irritable, sad, or sleepless.