The composition of the food we eat has a direct impact on our moods and our sleep. Thus, by choosing the right foods and the times when we consume them, we eliminate stress, optimise well-being and are full of energy. The perfect combo for a good mood.
What are ‘comfort foods?
When feeling the blues or a little depressed we often turn to sweets and other favourite comfort foods, therefore increasing the risk of putting on what could be termed as emotional pounds. Like all of us, you absolutely love these type of food and they’re almost impossible to resist. But as good as they are in the moment, there is very little chance they will bring you the necessary nutrients (don’t worry, they are not going to be banned just yet). The pleasure received from their consumption can be beneficial, but only if they are consumed in reasonable quantities and if you are fully aware of their potential pitfalls. Throwing yourself into a packet of biscuits after a hard day’s work will not help you make it better. So what should I eat?
INCREASING OUR TRYPTOPHAN CONTRIBUTION
This amino acid is a precursor to serotonin, the neurotransmitter of well-being. A deficiency in this amino acid limits the synthesis of serotonin and therefore the feeling of well-being. We need between 500 and 2000 mg per day.
Where do you find it? :
Legumes (lentils, chickpeas, beans, soybeans, broad beans) are THE source of tryptophan par excellence. In addition to containing a good amount of tryptophan, they contain carbohydrates that improve its assimilation by the body. It can also be found in eggs, dairy products, cereal products, nuts, and let’s not forget bananas, dark chocolate and turkey, a lean meat very rich in tryptophan.
BUT ALSO IN NUTRIENTS
To be sure to be in a good mood and avoid depressive states, you should also consume plenty of vitamins of the group B type, vitamin D, omega 3, magnesium, iron and zinc.
Where do you find them? :
Seasonal fruits and vegetables are top of the podium. They act on all fronts: synthesising neurotransmitters, they also fight against stress and irritability, and provide plenty of vitality.
So, I should increase my consumption of legumes, whole grain cereals, nuts, seeds, and oily fish. A consumption of 2 fatty fish per week should be sufficient to fight against depression.
NOT TOO MANY FATS, NOT TOO SWEET, NOT TOO SALTED,
We should also cut down on processed products. Apart from lacking nutritional properties, they also contain artificial substances (emulsifiers, dyes, aromas …) that can be harmful to the intestinal flora, which plays an important role on the nervous system and the regulation of our moods.
In order to have the best chances, I advise you to follow the sleep and stress program, specially designed to help you rest and have plenty of energy the next day. You’ll fill up on Tryptophan, magnesium, and group B vitamins, the perfect mix for a good night’s sleep and having lasting sense of well-being.