The field of nutritional psychiatry is relatively new, but early findings show a strong connection between diet, mood, and mental health. Here are some of the best foods linked to promoting a happy and healthy mind and body.
A good source of natural probiotics, fermented foods have gut-friendly bacteria that not only influence digestive health and inflammation levels throughout the body, but also appear to have a positive influence on mood and energy levels. Natural probiotics can be found in foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, miso and tempeh.
Omega 3-rich Foods
Research suggests omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids may help protect against depression. Though there is still lots more to study in this area, scientists know that Omega-3s can easily travel through the brain cell membrane and interact with mood-related molecules inside the brain. Find Omega-3s in fatty fish like mackerel, salmon, sardines and anchovies, flaxseeds and chia seeds, walnuts, and soybeans.
Complex carbohydrates can decrease mood swings by slowing the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream and increasing serotonin production, a “feel good” chemical produced in both the gut and the brain. Great sources of complex carbohydrates include whole grains, beans, peas, pears, Brussels sprouts, and sweet potatoes.