Beat a bad mood with food and you’ll be helping to feel as good as you can while supplying the body with what it needs to function properly. These healthier options work better than popular comfort foods, and won’t leave you regretting your decision later.
1. Dark Chocolate for Stress
Good news for chocolate lovers, you can actually indulge that chocolate craving while at the same time help to stress out less.
That’s because chocolate produces endorphins in the brain that help us feel good, and particularly goes to work on the stress hormone cortisol, slowing its production and helping to defeat the feeling of stress it creates. Of course you don’t want to go too far with your dark chocolate intake, or you could end up undoing the benefits and spike your blood sugar levels.
What about milk chocolate? You’ll want to stick with dark chocolate to get the mood-bumping effects, as it contains antioxidants not found in milk chocolate, and should be dairy free if it’s pure enough.
Make It Even Better
Use dark chocolate to cover strawberries, cherries, or other mood-boosting berries found below. By combining mood-elevating foods you are amplifying their positive effect.
2. Coconut for a Better Mood
Sprinkling coconut flakes into a recipe is one way to get to a better mood, and it’s also a tasty one. Coconut contains plenty of nutrients that can help you feel better and push away depressed feelings.
Potassium is an essential mineral for feeling good, but coconuts also contain protein and fiber, a combination that helps you feel full and keeps you regular so you’re always feeling good.
If you’re looking to lose weight you’ll want to go with unsweetened coconut flakes. It actually makes sense to buy them unsweetened and then add in your own form of sweetener rather than rely on whatever sugar they decide to use on sweetened coconut flakes.
Coconut In Many Forms
These days you’ll find all sorts of coconut products in addition to coconut flakes. There’s coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut water, and even coconut flour.
3. Kale for a Brighter Outlook
There’s no use in being a pessimist, so if you’ve found yourself thinking that things won’t get better, try munching on some kale and your mindset just might shift.
The antioxidants and carotenoids in kale are what is credited with the ability to see things through rosier glasses. That’s because it’s been found that those that are most optimistic in life have high levels of these substances in their blood. It’s a way of reverse-engineering a better perspective on life.
Kale isn’t the only veggie that can get you there, look for vegetables that have a deep green color, and chances are they’ll have the phytonutrients needed to bolster your day.
Crunchy Mood Enhancer
Baking up a batch of kale chips is a sure way to make yourself feel better, and avoid the regret that comes from munching on less-than-healthy snack fare.
4. Berries for the Blues
You can’t go wrong with berries if you’re looking to feel good. Raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries contain plenty of antioxidants that will help prevent oxidative stress, leading you to feel better right now.
The folate in these berries is what’s most important to your mental health, and if you’re running low on folate you may find it harder to stay positive and feel upbeat. It’s easy enough to get enough folate if you’re eating a balanced diet filled with plenty of fruits and vegetables.
On a side note you’ll be getting a good amount of fiber and minerals when you consume berries, making them a great fruit to eat if you’re attempting to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.
Best Berry Smoothie
Grab several different types of berries, toss half handfuls of each into the blender along with 1/2 cup of coconut milk and some ice and you’re seconds away from a delicious mood altering beverage.
5. Lentils to Shake Low-Energy Thoughts
Lentils may be small in size but they pack quite a nutritional punch, and you’ll be benefiting yourself in multiple ways when you eat them.
The folate in lentils does the heavy lifting for helping your brain function at its best and feel good. Even running slightly low on folate can lead to imbalances in how you feel so make sure you’re getting enough of it each day. It’s water soluble so your body cannot store it up for long periods of time.
Lentils are an excellent source of fiber, and when you eat them alongside a meaty main dish they’ll help balance out your meal and keep you sustained for hours afterward.
Adding Lentils to Your Menu
Lentils work great at thickening up a soup, and they can also be cooked up as a tasty side dish. They don’t have much flavor to them on their own, so it’s a good idea to season them with herbs and spices that contain additional health benefits.
6. Greek Yogurt for the Happiest You
Greek yogurt can help you top up your calcium levels, which in turn lets your brain right the ship and helps you shake off feelings ranging from depression to irritability. Calcium is essential to your wellbeing and affects how you feel during the day, so it’s important to make up for any shortages and stay at healthy levels.
Greek yogurt is higher in protein than regular yogurt, so it will also help you curb any food cravings and can help you meet your protein requirement for the day more easily.
What if you’re lactose-intolerant or otherwise just trying to avoid dairy? Don’t worry, there are plenty of non-dairy foods high in calcium so be sure you don’t run a shortage on this very important mineral.
As a Replacement
Greek yogurt can stand in for butter, cream cheese and other cheeses, sour cream, and even mayo. You’ll be getting pretty similar amounts of protein and calcium, with less fat and calories.
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