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Food Mood Boosters: 10 Foods for Mood Improvement

Our food mood boosters list of specific foods that help improve your mood and mental health.  Includes why these foods are good for mood improvement. Details on HealthyPlace.

Looking for food mood boosters? Yes, food and mood are related. Searching for food that will contribute to mood improvement will lead you to a number of options, but they all have a couple of things in common: they’re healthy foods and they’re high in proteins and vitamins; the nutrients needed to have a balanced system.

Don’t get discouraged — that doesn’t mean you’re stuck eating the trendy superfoods or salads all the time. The types of foods for a mood booster and foods that can improve mood overall range from everyday fruits and vegetables to more expensive options that you might expect to see on a gourmet menu.

List of Food Mood Boosters to Help Improve Your Mood

All of the food mood boosters below are important for nutrition and mental health.

  1. Salmon: One of the best food mood boosters with protein, vitamin D, potassium, omega 3s, and B vitamins in its arsenal, it’s not much of a surprise that salmon appears on many lists of food for mood enhancement. Another reason it pops up is because salmon provides tryptophan, an amino acid linked to converting serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is linked to mood regulation.
  2. Lentils: These are another repeat hit across food lists for boosting mood. They have B vitamins, which are linked to reducing irritability and depression since they also contribute to the production of serotonin.
  3. Bananas: This fruit is another to add to the list of foods that provide or affect tryptophan.
  4. Yogurt: Yogurt is high in probiotic bacteria. That may just seem like a buzzword, but what it means is it helps break down nutrients for absorption into the body. Including yogurt in your diet can help with your body’s intake of nutrients from other foods.
  5. Liver: You might be wrinkling your nose at this one, but liver is best known for its high content of vitamin B12. It also offers protein, iron (which is thought to play a role in the production of serotonin and dopamine), potassium, and many other vitamins and nutrients.
  6. Berries: Rich in vitamin C, berries of all sorts also offer antioxidants, fibre, potassium and digestive enzymes.
  7. Spinach, Kale, Collard Greens, and other dark green vegetables: Each of these contains a wealth of various vitamins that are important for everyday health, including mood regulation. Spinach in particular also has iron, calcium, potassium, and omega 3s among others.
  8. Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes have various amounts of different vitamins, but it’s big sell for being a food for mood boosting is the antioxidant beta-carotene which protects the body’s cells and has also been linked to improving brain function.
  9. Eggs: This North American breakfast staple contains vitamin D, omega 3s, and that mood-linked B12 vitamin.
  10. Brazil Nuts: Call the “King of Nuts,” the Brazil nut has vitamin E, magnesium, selenium, and provides tryptophan.

Doing more research into and consulting your doctors about the full impact of these foods may be beneficial for you, especially in how they can work together, how they might work alongside medications you’re taking, and to discover what alternatives there are should you be allergic to any of these. In addition, using a food and mood diary or journal can help you keep track of which foods impact your mood and are helpful or unhelpful in that regard.

When looking for food mood boosters, here’s one important thing to keep in mind. Seek out organic options and avoid processed ones. The organic versions of these foods can help enhance your mood.

article references

APA Reference
Barton, L. (2018, May 10). Food Mood Boosters: 10 Foods for Mood Improvement, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, May 24 from https://www.healthyplace.com/self-help/food-mental-health/food-mood-boosters-10-foods-mood-improvement

Last Updated: 2019, April 16

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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