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Did you know that mental illness affects more people worldwide than cardiovascular disease and cancer combined? The food you consume influences not only your physical health but mental health as well. With a healthy diet, you feel better, think more clearly, have increased concentration and attention span, less anxiety and depression. A better and happier YOU.

A poor diet can be overcome when we start to limit sugar and refined carbohydrates. Stay away from fast foods!!According to the American Psychological Association, our gut and brain send messages back and forth through the vagus nerve. While the food you consume influences emotions in the brain, the brain returns the favor by altering bacteria in the gut.

I’m sure we have all heard of SEROTONIN, the bodies mood stabilizer. Research indicates over 90% of the body’s natural supply is produced in the gut. Nutritionists recommend eating a diet of

  • Complex carbohydrates
  • Lean Proteins
  • Fatty acids

Have health snacks on hand so you don’t reach for that bag of chips, candy or soda. Sugar sends the body on a physical and mental roller coaster. Here are some suggestions for improving your diet, physical health and emotional well-being.

  • Oatmeal – Helps with depression and anxiety
  • Salmon and other white fish – High amounts of Omega 3s to boost learning and memory
  • Nuts – Omega 3s
  • Yogurt – Boost production of serotonin (Just watch out for any added sugars)
  • Berries – Enhance positive mood and alertness
  • Bananas – Reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety
  • Chocolate – YEAH. Dark chocolate reduces depressive symptoms
  • Apricots – Lots of Vitamin B. Helps with hyperactivity, memory loss and mental fatigue
  • Leafy greens
  • Eggs – Vitamin D helps with anxiety and depression and it is the PERFECT protein

The food and mood connection has been well researched and established. Change your food and improve your mood!!

Guest Blogger: Cynthia Benedict Counselor and Life Coach