So you’re feeling “meh”. Could it have something to do with the food you’ve been putting on your plate?
Nutritionist Michele Chevalley Hedge says you can eat your way to happiness.
Deakin University recently ran the very aptly names SMILEs (Supporting the Modification of lifestyle in Lowered Emotional States) trial, in which it set out to measure the therapeutic impact of a healthy diet – one with very little packaged, processed foods.
After 12 weeks, this randomized control trial concluded that dietary improvements can reduce symptoms of depression, with one-third of the participants going into remission from major depression.
So, here is my choice of the top five foods that are sure to make you feel happier. Add to cart, stat.
1. Sourdough bread (postbiotic)
With 95 per cent of serotonin (our happy hormone) made in the gut, we want to ensure the gut is functioning at its best.
You may already be aware of the impact of pre- and probiotics on gut health. And now the “biotics” family has a new member: postbiotics, largely associated with fermented foods such as sourdough bread and yoghurt.
In very simple terms, imagine prebiotics as the food for probiotics, which in turn manufactures the postbiotics.
2. Walnuts (omega 3)
Nuts and seeds are superstars of the wellbeing world. And like Ariarne Titmus is to swimming, the humble walnut shines the brightest in the nut world.
They are full of omega 3, which dampens inflammation, a key player in depression, and have also been found to have a positive impact on serotonin and dopamine (mood-regulating hormones).
3. Green tea (theanine)
This antioxidant wonder is rich in the depression-fighting amino acid theanine.
Matcha powder carries a real bang for your buck, with five times as much theanine as regular green tea.
4. Dark choc (phenylethylamine)
Yes, lovely, silky, dark chocolate with over 70 per cent cocoa contains phenylethylamine, a component that produces a positive effect on moods.
Two squares savoured rather than chomped is a smoothing mindfulness exercise, too.
5. Bananas (tryptophan)
Even shaped like a smile, bananas are a great addition to our happy toolkit. We know they’re high in complex carbs, which make them perfect pre or post exercise, but also contain tryptophan, which converts to serotonin.
Other complex-carb fruits and veggies are: apples, berries, carrots and sweet potatoes. They supply us with energy and vitamin B.
Serotonin Eatery improve people’s wellbeing by serving foods that promote the release of serotonin, a brain chemical which regulates mood, sleep pattern, appetite and other aspects of everyday life. Every time you eat, you are either feeding disease or fighting it. At Serotonin, our food is all house-made, offering a rainbow of colour to fill your body with the nutrients it requires to thrive. With the use of our fresh, organic, local + fair trade ingredients, our delicious plant-based meals ensure you can eat these for the rest of your life.
Our unique and creative mains are packed with tryptophan, an essential amino acid, which elevates your Serotonin levels to help stabilise your mood (and ultimately, bringing happiness). With our generous serving sizes, each dish features nutritionally complexed clean ingredients, so you can eat until you are satiated, leaving you and your tummy happy.
Without energy, it’s hard to get happy.
Michele Chevalley Hedge is a nutritional medicine practitioner, founder of the wellness website A Healthy View and author of Eat Drink & Still Shrink.
Source: From Body and Soul here.