A common problem for dieters is dealing with mood swings. A change in diet affects more than just your weight; it impacts your entire body and also your mental health. Whether you’ve started a new diet, or simply feel like your emotional ups and downs have become a challenge for you to manage, natural supplements can be a great fix. Here are some natural supplements that can help prevent mood swings and keep you happy and healthy.
5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) is an amino acid produced naturally in the body that increases serotonin productivity in the brain. Serotonin is often called the “happiness hormone,” and researchers believe it has a powerful effect on mood regulation. By taking 5-HTP as a supplement, it is believed that the additional serotonin will lead to mood improvement. 5-HTP should not be combined with traditional prescribed antidepressants.
2. St. John’s Wort
This is a mood supporting supplement that has been around for centuries, and has shown effectiveness in improving general mood and relieving the symptoms of depression. It comes from a plant, which makes it available in multiple forms, including pills, liquid extracts and teas. As with most natural supplements, it is recommended that you allow four to six weeks for the full effects to kick in.
3. Folic Acid
Folic acid is a B vitamin which appears to be deficient in people who are depressed or suffering from mood disorders. By taking the supplement, traditional antidepressants often become more effective. Folic acid can be found naturally in leafy greens, fruits, beans and whole grains, all of which are diet friendly foods. Folic acid can also be taken as a supplement.
Similar to 5-HTP, SAM-e is also a naturally occurring molecule in the body. It is believed to increase both levels of serotonin and dopamine, another mood regulating chemical. By taking additional SAM-e as a supplement, the body will experience an increase of serotonin and dopamine, leading to mood improvement.
5. Fish Oil
Fish oil is another supplement which has been found to impact moods. Omega-3 fatty acids in this oil are beneficial for the entire body. It is only recently that researchers have found a possible link between fish oil and mood stabilization. It has even been suggested that these supplements may be able to help people suffering from bipolar disorder to level out their moods.
Both 5-HTP and St. John’s Wort are prescription drugs in Europe, unlike the US where they are sold as herbal remedies commonly found at health food stores. They’re not subject to FDA regulation. Be cautious to ensure you are purchasing a high quality product. If you plan to take either with existing prescription drugs, run it by your doctor first.
Don’t let mood swings derail your healthy lifestyle. Consider one of these natural alternatives to help support you through your weight loss journey. Seeing your goal weight on the scale or fitting into your “skinny jeans” has been known to cause a great mood as well.