The choices you make about the foods you consume can have a significant effect on your emotional well-being.
When you’ve had a tough day at the office, indulging in comforting, familiar foods may be tempting. But piling your plate with pizza, fried chicken, or mac and cheese can leave you feeling sluggish. Eating this way regularly can take a toll on your emotional health as well.
“When you are not eating healthy foods, your energy level goes down and you may not feel good about being active,” says Susan Kasik-Miller, MSRD, Registered Dietitian with HSHS Sacred Heart Hospital. “But choosing a well-balanced diet that includes brightly colored, fresh produce and healthy fats can lead to better physical health and the ability to cope with disappointments in life.”
Recipe for Emotional Wellness
Winter—when exposure to mood-boosting sunlight is more restricted—is a wonderful time to focus on finding foods that brighten your spirits. Items to try include:
- Fish—with omega-3 fatty acids, which help serotonin work better by decreasing inflammation
- Spinach—containing magnesium to help regulate blood pressure and blood sugar
- Oranges or grapefruit—rich in soluble fiber that can help stabilize energy levels
- Sweet potatoes—with vitamin B6 to enhance production of the feel-good neurotransmitter serotonin
- Walnuts—satisfying and another good source of omega-3 fatty acids
If change in diet is still not helping you boost your mood, please do not hesitate to reach out to learn more about our behavioral health services.
You may also be interested in “3 Benefits of Thankfulness.”