Food and Your Mood
February 21, 2024

Did you know that the effect of your eating habits go beyond your physique and correlate to your mood as well?

Our digestive systems produce bacteria dependent on what we consume, which in turn affects what kind of chemicals our bodies produce. Chemicals such as dopamine and serotonin are two of the “feel-good” neurotransmitters, which help our brains regulate our moods and emotions.This week, we’re helping you plan your next grocery trip to Otter Co-op by covering a few of the types of food can help you increase the “good” bacteria in your gut to boost your body’s production of mood regulating chemicals.

Unprocessed or Minimally Processed Foods

Unprocessed foods are naturally edible on their own, and have not been altered from their natural state. Minimally processed foods are altered from their natural state to a small degree, but their nutritional content is not significantly affected. These foods include fresh produce, plain yogurt, nuts and grains, whole wheat flour, and milk to name a few. These kinds of whole foods are typically rich in nutrients and beneficial for your mind in addition to your body.

Fibre Rich Foods

Fibre helps our bodies more efficiently absorb glucose, which can help regulate our blood sugar levels and prevent a sugar rush. Fruits, vegetables, beans, legumes, and grains are all rich in fibre. Steady blood sugar levels can attribute to sustained energy levels, and the reduced likelihood of mood swings from sugar highs or lows helps stabilise our moods.

Fermented Foods

Fermented foods are high in probiotic bacteria, which is beneficial for our digestive systems. A few examples of fermented foods include sauerkraut, yogurt, pickles, kimchi, and kombucha. The probiotic bacteria in fermented foods increases the good bacteria in our digestive tracts, and as we mentioned earlier, this can have a positive impact on the production of “feel-good” chemicals in our bodies.

Anti Inflammatory Foods

These foods fight inflammation in our bodies and are often packed with antioxidants. Dark leafy greens, tomatoes, berries, turmeric, ginger, and dark chocolate are all examples of anti-inflammatory foods. Reduced body inflammation overall can positively affect our brain function and in turn, our moods.

The relationship between food and your mood is an intricate one, given that there are various other factors that play a role in our emotional well-beings. However, being mindful and choosing a balanced diet is a choice with an internal impact that can assist with the state of one’s mental health. We've got you covered for all your grocery needs. So, if you read this and want to opt for more fresh produce on your next trip to the store, or if you want to indulge in something that soothes a craving, visit your local Otter Co-op food store.

Food For Your Mood/