Tuesday Ten: Foods That Beat the Blues

Tuesday Ten
Sometimes when you’re having a really, really bad day, your usual pick-me-ups just won’t do the trick. You call your mom, go for a run, take a hot shower…but nothing seems to help. There are few things worse than this feeling of being “trapped” in a bad day. But, much to my pleasant surprise, I recently came across an article in Woman’s Day that spotlights some mood boosting foods. I decided to share this list with all of you so that you today. Consider it your road map to happiness for those days when you can’t get out of a slump.

Without further ado, here are 10 foods that beat the blues and what they can do for you…

1. Feeling stressed? Eat chocolate.
Yep, you read that right. Chocolate not only tastes great, it also helps to reduce stress hormones that can make you moody. Even eating a tiny bit has proven to reduce anxiety and keep you level-headed. Opt for dark chocolate, which is packed with more antioxidants than milk chocolate.

2. Feeling anxious? Eat salmon.
Foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids have been shown to help calm nerves and keep you in a happier state of mind in general. Salmon is an excellent source of omega-3s, so eat up. Plus, it will give your skin a glow and make your hair shiny too!

3. Feeling angry? Drink green tea.
I think that everyone should make green tea a staple in their daily diet. Besides lowering your cholesterol and helping to prevent cancer, it can also keep you calm, concentrated and focused too. If there’s something that’s eating away at you, brew yourself a nice warm cup of green tea. You’ll be sipping up a ton of antioxidants and calming down at the same time.

4. Feeling sluggish? Eat spinach.
Besides being amazing for your health, spinach will also give you a major midday energy boost. According to iVillage, this leafy green has enough nutrients to help increase blood flow to your brain and help you recall information, so a spinach salad is the perfect lunch to pack for work or school.

5. Feeling cranky? Eat a handful of berries.
Eating a handful of blueberries will give you body a big dose of antioxidants, which will keep your neural pathways running smoothly, promoting positive energy. New research even shows that compounds in the berries help to re-write our genetic code so that the body becomes its own antioxidant factory, churning out feel-good enzymes in the brain, according to What’s Cooking America.

6. Feeling sad? Eat a bowl of cereal.
For those downer days when you need a little happiness boost, a bowl of healthy cereal and milk can do just the trick. Sometimes we get sad because our bodies aren’t getting the right vitamins. Vitamin D, which is in milk and healthy cereals, helps to promote happy thoughts in your brain. A good way to give your body this boost every day is to have a bowl of cereal for breakfast.

7. PMSing? Eat eggs.
We’ve all been there. Your hormones are out of whack and nothing is making you feel better. While you might want to reach for ice cream or salty chips to cure your cravings when it’s that time of the month, these foods can actually make you feel grumpier because they won’t give your body the right nutrition (more like dehydration and added bloating). Consider scrambled eggs on whole grain toast your new best-PMS-food-friend. Eggs have happiness-boosting nutrients, and healthy carbs like whole grain breads are a healthy way to replace your cravings for bagels and chips.

8. Feeling ornery? Eat an orange.
Orange you glad that oranges boost your mood? This citrus fruit is packed with nutrients and vitamin C, which helps to pump oxygen through your body to your brain. The citric acid will also recharge your system. Oranges are such an easy snack to bring anywhere that there’s no reason not to carry one when you have a case of the grumps.

9. Feeling worried? Eat a bowl of chicken soup.
Everyone loves a bowl of chicken soup. It’s one of my ultimate comfort foods, and I included it in my list of foods that boost your immune system. But did you know that it makes you less stressed too? According to WebMD, a hearty bowl of chicken soup with veggies has the water-fiber-protein trifecta that fills you up before it fills you out. I suggest making your chicken soup homemade so that you can add in as many dark, leafy green veggies as possible for an extra boost.

10. Feeling unsettled? Eat a PB & J.
Carbs tend to get a bad rap. Whenever I feel anxious about something, I find that having a snack with some carbs helps to settle my stomach and mind. Peanut butter and jelly on a half an English muffin is a comforting snack that actually helps to raise your levels of serotonin, the brain’s natural antidepressant. A snack that is a little bit indulgent and comforting but not too unhealthy will satisfy your cravings and make you feel a little better.

I hope you all learned something new! Be sure to bookmark this page and make it your go-to guide for when you need to beat the blues. Also, while these foods might be quick fixes when you’re having a moody moment, if you’re really upset about a big issue talk it out with a friend or trusted family member.

Which of these mood-boosting foods do you eat regularly?

Cheery to being happy and healthy!

XO Lauren

Photo: Yahoo, Use Real Butter, Fitness and Health Advisor, My Wow Shop, Country Living, Esquire, iFood TV, Telegraph, The Shin Guardian, Peaceful Mind
Sources: Woman’s Day, iVillage, WebMD, What’s Cooking America
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