Boost your Mood through your Food
The term you are what you eat is more than just a saying; it is actually a scientifically proved fact. Indeed it seems that happiness begins at the end of your fork.
Drew Ramsey, a clinical psychiatrist at Columbia University, and health writer Tyler Graham say that eating the right food is ‘the foundation of good mental health’. When you think about it, it’s only logical to think that the food you eat can have a huge impact on your mood. So in short to improve our mental and emotional health; stabilise our mood and improve our overall health and wellbeing we need to look at our diets and eat better.
Our mood and the food we eat are intrinsically linked. A recent survey conducted by Mind reported that nearly nine out of ten people with a range of mental health issues believed there was a link between mental health and physical health and food was discovered to be a vital link in this equation. and according to Mal Weeraratne author of ‘Emotional Detox-through bodywork’, is concerned primarily with removing trauma stored in the form of emotions, but as part of his treatment plan he advocates a physical detox and suggests replenishing your system through alkalinity. He writes ‘when dealing with emotional or physical pain we are also programmed to crave sugary foods, as sweet food can actively alleviate pain by reducing opioids. ….whilst there is no harm in consuming high-fat and high-sugar foods from time to time ……sugar foods are acidic and an acid body is a magnet for sickness, disease, cancer and ageing.’ (p39, Emotional Detox through Bodywork by Mal Weeraratne)
Before condemning the alkaline diet that has been publicised by celebrities including: Victoria Beckham, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Aniston as being faddy, you may want to consider it’s scientifically proven benefits. The benefits of the alkaline diet are well documented to include higher energy levels, fat loss, increased concentration and clearer skin.
Acid Foods include:
Meat, poultry, fish and seafood
Bread, cereal and grains
Fruit and natural fruit juices
Vegetable and vegetable juice
You can use a PH test strip to measure the ph in urine, which reflects the acid-alkali balance of blood and tissues can be measured using PH strips. This is a really handy way of monitoring how changes in your diet are affecting your acis/alkaline balance. Urine with a PH value of 7 or more is considered to be healthier than urine of higher acidity.
When it comes to food it can really help lift your mood and keep you on an even keel, a few mood boosting foods include:
1. Cottage cheese
If you’re suffering with some serious PMS, try a snack of cottage cheese on rice cakes for a tryptophan-loaded mood lift, it can really help alleviate tension and stress.
Spinach has high levels of magnesium and it can help reduce feelings of anxiety, fatigue and depression.
tofu is a true super-food, laden with super-high levels of tryptophan and is excellent for lifting the mood, its an excellent good mood food.
4. Chocolate – go on treat yourself without guilt.
Just a few squares of good quality dark chocolate per day can boost endorphin levels- it’s the natural mood boost food. A study by Johns Hopkins University in the USA, found the sugar and fat content in chocolate has a positive effect on mood.
These foods are great to incorporate into our weekly diets and fantastic for incorporating into lunchboxes for those times that you just know you’ll be having a tough day at the office or in times when you know you have a pressurised week.
I think it’s a great idea to keep a food diary and to chart your food intake and your moods. It’s really surprising how food and your mood are connected and keeping a record of your diet over a month really highlights this link.