Good Mood Food
Author: Jay Date Posted:19 August 2020
Finding things to do around the house during lockdown can be a challenge for even the most resourceful of us. Fortunately spring is about to arrive and lend a helping hand. Putting your hands in the soil and planting a range of seasonal herbs and vegetables is one of the best ways to stay grounded and manage stress.
Choosing good mood foods is also a way of ensuring your body gets all it needs to find a better balance no matter what is happening in your life. My top 5 dietary recommendations for stress management are:
1. Protein: It may seem obvious but I still see a lot sub optimal protein counts going on, in terms of daily intake which can vary dramatically depending on your chosen diet. Without adequate levels of protein a whole range of physiological process can be affected including gastric and immune function, mood and sleep. Aim for at east 0.7-1g of protein per kilo of body weight each day. It's alsom important to vary your sources. Some good types include nuts, seeds and grains, Tempeh or Tofu for vegans or vegetarians or Fish, Meat and eggs. Yopu might like to include a protein powder too if necessary
2. Fatty Acids: Are you getting enough ? Even though there is a lot of bad press about certain oils it is important to remember that our dietary fat content remains an important macronutrient to balance our hormones and energy needs. Many low fat foods can be disproportionately loaded with sugar. This means you don’t always get the benefits and find yourself craving sweets or other stimulants like coffee just because your energy is low. Omega 3 sources such as chia and flaxseeds can be easily added to cooking or try to include several servings of fish each week. The monounsaturated sources such as olive oil and avocado are particularly useful for those concerned about cholesterol.
3. Folate: This is one of those B vitamins which can be lost in transit depending on the journey. Although folate is fortified in many processed foods, exclusion diets could mean that normal dietary sources are not a reliable way to meet recommended daily intake. Folate is vital for normal cell formation and synthesis of neuro-transmitters involved in regulating your moods. Many people are more drawn to fresh salads and raw food in warmer months, so spring is a great time to include loads of green leafy vegetables into cooking and salads and boost your folate levels. At Sunnybrook we stock a great range of organic fresh fruits and vegetables which you can buy in-store.
4. B12: Most Vegans I have met are normally conscious of their B12 levels but deficiency is possible in anyone with compromised digestion. It can take years for a B12 deficiency to emerge and some of the symptoms include dry skin , burning lips, memory disturbances, poor sleep , fatigue or depression. Many of the best sources of B12 are animal sources such as beef, eggs or salmon but vegans or vegetarians can include seaweeds or some yeast spreads as a source or supplement with a vegan friendly B12 supplement.
5. Comfort Food: Yes comfort food in moderation is good because nutrition can’t always be considered as just the sum of its parts. There are many people trying different diets for different reasons but how do you really feel ? What’s the point of losing 5kg if you become unbearable to be around! Comfort food has its place and when included on balance honours our real relationship with food.
If you would like any more information, please visit us in- store to speak with one of our friendly and helpful practitioners.