Food and Mood


Stressed out these days? How about a hot fudge brownie delight?! According to a recent study from the UK looking at mental health and diet, there are certain foods that exacerbate stress and unfortunately lead to weight gain. The good news is, there are also food “supporters” that help lessen the impact of stress on a person’s mental health. Stress causes the body to secrete cortisol, also known as the stress hormone, which robs the body of vitamins and minerals. Specifically, B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin A and magnesium are used to support the stress response. Compound that with poor nutrition choices during times of stress and you get a double whammy assault on your health and waistline.

The foods you may be craving are the same ones that exacerbate stress:

  • Sugar

  • Caffeine

  • Chocolate

  • Alcohol

The food “supporters” that should be consumed regularly to help you ameliorate those signs of stress are:

  • Water

  • Vegetables

  • Fruits

  • Oil-rich fish

In addition, the study found that certain dietary practices helped improve mood/mental health. Those basic guidelines are:

  • eating regular meals

  • carrying nutritious snacks

  • planning meals in advance

Sometimes knowing is much easier than doing, but by following these simple guidelines, you really can prevent mood swings and boost your mental health.

About Susan Greeley
Helping others achieve optimal health through good nutrition and lifestyle, Susan Greeley promotes wellness through diets rich in healthy, wholesome foods. She counsels clients in her own private nutrition practice and works as the staff nutritionist for a YMCA.

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