Is There a Connection Between Food, Mood, Energy and Mental Clarity?

Your body is a walking laboratory and food is the main ingredient in fueling and functioning this laboratory. Unfortunately, you have a certain downfall and that is called the taste buds. Because most people are a slave to their taste buds they invariably choose the wrong fuel, thus causing their laboratory engine to be sluggish. Food can be eaten almost on a medicinal level, enhancing everything from energy and mood to focus and concentration. Food can still be just as enjoyable or even more so and quality of life can be enhanced considerably simply by what you ingest.

Oatmeal – Energy and Stress Reduction

Oatmeal is high in protein as well as fiber. These nutrients are released into the bloodstream slowly offering a continuous flow of stress reducing B vitamins which helps transform carbohydrates into energy.

Vitamin C and Friends – Mental Clarity

Eating foods that are high in vitamin C as well as vitamin E, and selenium contribute to mental clarity. In addition vitamin B helps brain neurotransmitters to reduce cognitive decline, thus improving focus and memory. Here are a list of foods that are high in these essential nutrients: 

  • Vitamin C – kiwi, peppers, oranges, potatoes, tomatoes, papaya and mango.
  • Vitamin E – whole grains, nuts, tomatoes, spinach, broccoli and fish
  • Selenium – liver, tuna, shellfish, cashews, oily fish, lentils and sunflower seeds

Quinoa – Energy and Focus

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah) is a fluffy, light rice-like food often thought of as a grain but is more closely related to the vegetable family. It is high in iron which enhances brain activity and vitamin B-2 (riboflavin) which boosts energy and metabolism.

Chocolate – Mood

Chocolate is known to boost serotonin levels in the brain. This is the “feel-good” chemical that can often dip below normal levels throughout the day. A piece of chocolate will combat the blues and help with emotional struggle. It has also been known to aid digestion, improve anemia and increase sexual appetite. Use chocolate sparingly as it has high sugar and caffeine levels. That sugar boost can lead to weight gain. Choosing dark chocolate is a better choice as it is lower in sugar and high in antioxidants.

Omega-3 – Energy and Depression

This essential fatty acid is found in fish, eggs, nuts and seeds and is continuously mentioned in health news reports–and for good reason. Omega-3 is excellent in reducing the thickening of arteries and enhancing joint health thus affecting your energy output. If the blood is flowing unimpeded and the joints are working with fluidity there is no stopping you from taking a long hike, going to the gym or just enjoying a night out dancing with friends. In addition, studies show that omega-3 can possibly be helpful in combating certain depressions as well as fatigue.

Don’t Really Need Them

In order to get the most out of the foods you eat, it’s best to go easy on, or completely avoid the following foods and drinks:  

  • Refined foods – sugar, caffeine and fatty dairy can weigh down your system with toxins and  fat.
  • Meat – taxing your body with high consumption of meat drains your energy with long digestion periods.
  • Alcohol – moderate consumption is okay but over doing it decreases serotonin, hydration and energy levels.

 

 

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