You Are What You Eat
Are you giddy or anxious? My buddy Jay has consistently yammered on about reasons to change your diet for the sake of physical well-being and today I’m going to give you one more reason: your mood.
Often our stress is the result of fatigue. How many times have you snapped at some random idiot just because you’d had enough for the day? If so, you need foods that are magnesium-rich to reboot your energy. Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, cashews, and almonds are all great examples of boosters. Sense a pattern? Magnesium not only affects energy production but also influences serotonin, the “feel good” hormone of the brain.
Probiotics are essential for the digestive tract. Think about it- if junk food is still waiting its turn to bid farewell, while your organs are in overdrive processing its useless ingredients, don’t you think you’ll get dragged down as a result? One way or another, you’re gonna feel the effects. Eat some pure yogurt (Greek is best) to speed up the lagging process.
What’s the number one nutrient most Americans lack? Answer it right & I’ll put your name in the ballot for a new car. Fiber! Fruits and veggies aside, pure wheat is a key resource for fiber intake. Researchers claim that people who eat high-fiber bran cereal suffer less emotional distress, experience fewer cognitive difficulties, and are less fatigued than those who don’t. Fiber also works in conjunction with probiotics to aid digestion. Just be sure to read the labels. Simply because the package says “wheat” doesn’t mean it’s whole, and refined bread will have the opposite effect on your body. Need a quick recipe? Go to this site and try this simple yummy. The cayenne seasoning wakes you up, the beans are the protein, the tomato antioxidants clean out your system, and lentils provide that missing fiber. (Just kidding, there is no new car.)
Not all fats and carbs are bad, as your brain is mainly made up of fat, and omega- 3 fatty acids are essential components for a variety of reasons. Fatty fish, such as wild salmon, contain the omega-3 fatty acid DHA, which has been shown to increase membrane quality and nerve function in the brain. There’s a reason fish is known as “brain food.” Some studies have found that DHA consumption aids the amygdala, the hippocampus, and the cingulate, three areas of the brain associated with mood. People with depression have less gray matter in these areas. Fish is also a great source of lean protein, which stabilizes blood sugar. Sugar stabilization prevents mood swings and sudden energy slumps. For the veg heads out there, indulge yourself with homemade guacamole (avocado), pure vegetable oils, and flax seed recipes.
Carbs increase feel-good hormones, while also boosting energy. Don’t we all usually feel better when we actually have the energy to accomplish something? To stay out of a slump, pick complex carbohydrates such as ancient grains and oatmeal over refined carbs. The body digests and releases complex carbs slowly, keeping your blood sugar (and mood) stable. Simple sugars, like those found in sweets and processed foods, provide only a quick burst of energy, causing your blood sugar to plummet as quickly as it spiked.
Green tea, despite the caffeine, is actually a relaxing drink. L-theanine, an amino acid found mainly in tea leaves, has been shown to stimulate alpha brain waves. This can improve focus while also having a calming effect on the body and its effects can last up to eight hours. Take your pick– hot tea, brewed iced, and flavored varieties like jasmine green or berry green. Just remember that caffeine, in moderation (1-2 cups a day), can be helpful, but be reasonable, as too much will make you irritable and anxious. Again, read labels because tads of caffeine do linger in decaf products.
We’re all susceptible to that occasional craving, and this is especially true when we’re already feeling down or blue. Your body is craving a quick fix high supplied by the simple carbs. Compromise instead with dark chocolate or your favorite finger fruits dipped into this yummy sauce. Since I lied about the ballot I’m providing the recipes free-of-charge.
Posted on April 21, 2012, in Eating Heathly, Fatigue, Healthy Food, Healthy Mind, Omega 3, Process Speed, Pysche, Recipes, Stress, Stress Relief, Vitamins & Nutirents and tagged Amino Acid, amydgala, Anxious, Blood sugar, Carbohydrate, Carbs, Dietary fiber, Energry, Fatigue, Feel Good, Green tea, Healthy Foods, Healthy Mind, Hippocampus, Mood, nutrition, Omega-3 fatty acid, Process Speed, serotonin, Stress. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.