With all kinds of discoveries being made, medical science neglected the connection between mood and food for years. Fortunately, recent discoveries have made it apparent how your diet not only affects the way you look but also affects the way you feel.
Processed foods are designed to activate your brain’s dopamine center, making you feel good for a moment at the expense of impaired decision-making, stress, and fatigue. On the other hand, a healthy diet acts as fuel to your brain.
Certain foods are proven to improve mood, stability, reaction time, concentration span, alertness, and productivity. In short, these foods provide a holistic approach to overall wellness, including mental and emotional well-being.
Foods for mental and emotional well-being…
1. Leafy greens
Folic acid is shown to reduce symptoms of depression and insomnia. This naturally occurring vitamin B is responsible for the production of feel-good hormones such as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.
It is found adequately in leafy greens such as spinach, brussels sprouts, broccoli, kale, collard greens, cabbage, and others.
2. Whole grains
Glucose is the ultimate source of energy. However, eating simple carbs can result in blood sugar spikes. In contrast, whole grains consist of complex carbohydrates which take longer to digest and supply a slower but steady flow of glucose to the bloodstream.
Including whole grains such as oats, quinoa, brown rice, wheat, corn, and Kamut in your diet boosts your brain function, increases concentration span, and reduces symptoms of anxiety and irritability.
Star of Indian cooking, turmeric, also known as curcumin, has a number of mental and physical health benefits. Add it to your dishes to deal better with stress and anxiety.
Apart from being efficient in treating allergies, digestive disorders, liver issues, and respiratory infections, it also reduces inflammation and regulates emotional well-being.
Yogurt is an excellent source of good bacteria – Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus. Its anti-inflammatory properties keep the brain fit. As a result, it improves your learning capacity and overall mood.
The probiotics present in yogurt are great for your gut health and digestive system. Studies have proven that it is extremely helpful for those dealing with social anxiety.
5. Extra virgin olive oil
Olive oil has been considered the main ingredient of the extremely healthy Mediterranean diet. It wards off cognitive decline and reduces the risks of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and heart disease.
It accentuates your visual memory and verbal fluency. And yes, it is helpful in combating brain fog. Make sure to check for extra virgin oil to enjoy its absolute benefits.