Kagay-anons, the people of Cagayan de Oro, are known to be friendly in nature. Thus, dubbing the city the City of Golden Friendship. Smiles and kind gestures will welcome every tourist that visit the city. Do you agree?
However, there comes a time in our lives when we are down like there’s no single reason to smile about. Know that there are ways to uplift ourselves and boost our mood, naturally. Through indulging foods rich in omega-3 fats, selenium, vitamin B12 and folic acid is just one of your options. Introducing the following ‘happy foods’ that can help improve your mood and make you happier.
Edible fruit banana contains tryptophan which is a type of protein that is being converted by our body into serotonin. Then this serotonin is the hormone that gives us the bright mood. Also, bananas contain carbohydrates which boost our energy, high potassium content which prevents cramps and is best for individuals who regularly do exercise. It is considered one of the world’s healthiest fruits.
Beans and Soybeans
Soluble fiber, folic acid, and omega-3 fats which are known to improve our mood can be found in beans. It is also an excellent source of calcium and iron. Soybeans, furthermore, contain genistein which is a weak estrogen-like substance that may prevent breast and prostate cancers.
Vitamin C and antioxidants, which are known stress busters, are abundant in blueberries. Also, blueberries are rich in fiber, good for the digestion.
Vitamin B5 which helps fight stress is present in broccoli. Also, folate of folic acid in broccoli is proven to improve our disposition. Broccoli is considered an effective anticancer food and is found to inhibit cancer cells based on laboratory studies.
Brown rice is rich in minerals such as selenium, and manganese which helps the body to synthesize fats, abundant in naturally-occurring oils, antioxidants and high in fiber.
Low levels of Vitamin B12 can lead to depression, thus, eating clams which are rich with that vitamin is your option to lift your mood. This is because the brain needs vitamin B12 to produce dopamine and serotonin.
Spiced food can make you happy and give you a sense of well-being, believe it or not. This is because of the presence of the chemical compound ‘capsaicin’ which is found in chili peppers. After eating a spicy food, the capsaicin then attaches itself to the pain receptors in the mucous membrane of your mouth and nose, telling your brain that it is in pain, releasing endorphins, another hormone that makes us happy.
Chocolate contains anadamine which is a chemical in the brain that helps brighten our mood. And according to scientists, other chemicals present in chocolate cause anadamine to stay longer, thus which enhance its positive effect. Also, the sugar in chocolate boost levels of endorphins.
Coconut contains high levels of triglycerides, fats that help aid our mood and foster brain health. It would be best to choose unsweetened, natural pieces of coconut or coconut shavings.
In a study based in Brazil, people who drink coffee with milk every day are less likely to be depressed. Thanks to caffeine which is probably the most popular mood-enhancing drug in the world. Coffee boosts our energy levels, makes us feel at alert, and can improve our memory. However, too much of it can cause heart palpitations and anxiety, making it difficult for us to sleep. Moderation is necessary.
In a study conducted in Japan involving more than 40,000 people, it was found that levels of psychological stress were 20% lower in people who drank five or more cups of green tea per day compared to those who drank less than one.
Far healthier than sugar, honey can also have a positive impact on your mood. Due to kaempferol and quercetin which are chemicals that reduce inflammation in the brain, it helps to prevent depression.
Preferably skim milk, milk products are rich in tryptophan. Milk also contains Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and antioxidants that aid in fighting stress and aging.
Mushrooms are abundant in selenium. And a deficiency of the said mineral has been linked to a higher risk of depression, fatigue, and anxiety. Mushrooms are also the only plant that is a source of natural Vitamin D.
Packed with minerals such as selenium, protein, and omega-3 fats, nuts are considered nutritional powerfoods. They also contain Vitamin E which is an antioxidant that fights stress. Aside of that, they elevate our moods, they are also considered as “brain food” with their high content omega-3 fats that improve the blood flow in our brains.
Oily fishes such as mackerel, salmon and sardines are found to be loaded with omega-3 fatty acids. In a study in Finland, it showed that people who eat more fish are less likely to be depressed. Also, most fishes are packed with Vitamin B6 and B12, both involved in the production of serotonin. There are also alternative for this, through intaking omega-3 supplements. Not only omega-3 rich foods make us happier but are good for the heart and brain too.
Nature’s richest sources of zinc are oysters. In a randomized clinical trial which involved 44 people with depression way back 2013, those who were given a 25 mg zinc supplement along with an antidepressant were found to have improved moods over the 12-week study period, compared to those who were only given an antidepressant. Low zinc levels are also linked to anxiety.
With radishes’ spicy crunch, it may lift your mood by stimulating the release of norepinephrine and dopamine.
Just like broccoli, spinach is rich in folic acid, an important B vitamin for producing serotonin which is the body’s feel-good chemical. A cup of cooked spinach approximately equates to 250 micrograms of folic acid.
Actually, any food that you crave can be considered a comfort food for anything that tastes delicious stimulate the production of endorphins, thus, making us happy. However, we must take them in moderation to avoid gaining weight.
How about you? What is your favorite ‘happy food’ mentioned in our list? And if it was not included, comment it down below!