It’s not an exact science, but ridiculously cute puppy videos and Ryan Gosling are pretty much guaranteed mood boosters. Since we don’t necessarily have access to the latter in real life (Yeah, we’re working on changing that!), there’s an easier course to a better mood: your tummy. We spoke to experts about what to digest to boost your mood.
Wake up and smell the coffee: Literally. Drinking a few cups of coffee a day has been linked to lower rates of depression, said Karen Ansel, MS, RDN, spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and co-author of The Calendar Diet: A Month By Month Guide to Losing Weight While Living Your Life. The caffeine in coffee boosts energy, focus, and concentration.
Get nutty for walnuts: Who doesn’t feel uh-mazing after a good night’s sleep? Here’s a hint. “Walnuts are one of the foods that naturally contain melatonin, a hormone that regulates your sleep cycles so you wake up rested and refreshed,” Karen said.
Go green: Rochelle Sirota, MS, RD, CDN, said the active ingredient in green tea is L-theanine, an amino acid that can cross the blood-brain barrier. This amino acid is thought to promote alertness and calmness simultaneously. That’s like your boyfriend being smart and rich.
Nibble on a piece of chocolate: Cacao is the bean that’s made into chocolate, and dark chocolate in particular with a high cacao percentage can be a mood booster, Rochelle said. “Active ingredients include antioxidants, magnesium, B vitamins, and several neurotransmitter modulating agents which are thought to allow dopamine and serotonin, two feel-good substances, to linger in the bloodstream longer,” Rochelle said.
Need some strategies for happiness? We have a week’s worth of suggestions.
xx, The FabFitFun Team