Mood-Boosting Foods

Many of us are learning new ways and new coping mechanisms to handle stress during these unprecedented times. For some of us that might be self-care that ranges from reading books, to face masks, to meditation and trying new and different hobbies. Many people are even learning how to cook, or how to cook more complicated or experimental foods they may have never tried before.

But did you know that certain ingredients can become mood-boosting foods? Not just comfort food, but actual evidence they may boost energy and how you are feeling too. Research on the relationship between nutrition and mental health has been increasingly emerging. Though it is important to note that mood can be influenced by many factors too, such as stress, environment, poor sleep, genetics, mood disorders, and nutritional deficiencies, which makes it so that not everyone may experience the same benefits from the foods below.

However, everyone deserves to try a little boost from time to time, and not only may these foods boost your mood, but they are also very healthy for you!

Fish

Not just any fish surprisingly, but fatty fish. Did you know that fatty fish are packed with good fats? Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of essential fats that you and your body simply cannot produce on your own. You need to obtain these crucial fats through your diet and fatty fish, like salmon, for example, are rich with two types of important omega-3s. These omega-3s are known as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosatetraenoic acid (EPA) and both are linked to lower levels of depression.

Omega-3s play key roles in brain development as well as cell signaling, and some clinical trials showed that in a few studies, consuming more omega-3s in the form of fish oil can help with depression. Although there's no standard dose, most experts agree that as an adult we should be getting at least 250-500mg of both EPA and DHA per day. Given that a single 3.5 ounce (or 100 grams) serving of salmon provides 2,260 mg of both EPA and DHA, eating fish like this a few times per week is a great way to add these fats to your diet.

Besides salmon, there are other fish that you can add to your diet for a great source of EPA and DHA as well.

  • Mackerel
  • Sardines
  • Caviar
  • Tuna
  • Swordfish
  • Trout
  • Seabass
  • Oysters
  • Crab
  • Mussels
  • Walleye

For the freshest and most convenient means to add delicious and mood-boosting fish to your diet, check out our massive selection of fresh seafood you can order to be delivered right to your door.

Chocolate

Reaching for a piece of chocolate after a long, hard day may help alleviate your mood. Chocolate is in fact, rich in many compounds known to boost how you feel. Sugar itself may help improve mood as it is a quick source of fuel for the body and brain, but even further, it may release a cascade of feel-good compounds. Compounds such as caffeine, theobromine, and N-acylethanolamine which have been linked to mood improvements. There is still some scientific debate if there are enough of these compounds in all chocolate to trigger a psychological response. However, chocolate is high in health-promoting flavonoids, too. These flavonoids have been shown to increase blood flow to your brain, help reduce inflammation, and even assist in boosting brain health, which may work toward better mood regulation.

Last but never least, chocolate simply tastes good to many. Eating a little chocolate is a pleasurable experience in flavor, texture, and scent, which all contribute toward mood boosts.

So, go ahead and indulge every once in a while, in a piece of Thelma's Chocolate Praline, Creamy Chocolate Fudge, or Chocolate Walnut Fudge.

Grass-Fed Beef

Did you know that grass-fed beef not only tastes different as well as better, but it may also assist in boosting mood and lowering anxiety? In fact, like fish, grass-fed beef has much higher omega-3 fatty acids than beef that eat feed instead of grass. In a landmark clinical trial in Ireland, held in 2017, several research studies came to the same conclusions that increased omega-3 fatty acids have tremendous health and disease preventative measures.

If you think about it, it makes excellent sense. When we feed ourselves better food, we feel better. If we treat and feed the animals we consume with better conditions and food, we have better food for us. Not only does grass-fed beef benefit us with higher omega 3s, but it is also a much better means of raising cows for the environment.

Additionally, the omega-3 in grass-fed beef is twice the amount in non-grass-fed beef and is mostly ALA, an omega-3 that isn't found in fatty fish.

You can find a delicious variety of grass-fed beef right here at Wholey's, such as:

  • Godshall's Beef Bacon
  • Corn Beef Brisket
  • Wholey's All beef Kielbasa
  • Wholey's All beef Franks
  • USDA Choice Beef Brisket, Flat
  • Standing Rib Roast, bone-in, USDA Choice
  • USDA Choice Bottom Round Rump

Additional Mood-Boosting Foods

When creating a meal that will no doubt feel fulfilling, comforting, as well as bursting with flavor, consider choosing the above mood-boosting ingredients and mixing them with recipes featuring these other proven mood alleviating ingredients:

  • Fermented foods – During the process of fermentation, probiotics are created. These live microorganisms support the growth of healthy gut bacteria and may influence the level of your serotonin. Serotonin is a chemical nerve cells produce, found mostly in the digestive system. It impacts every single part of your body, including mood-stabilizing.
  • Bananas – High in fiber and vitamin B6, a vitamin that helps synthesize feel-good neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin.
  • Don't forget oats, nuts, berries, and seeds.

At Wholey's, let us make these times a bit easier. With our passion for all things food, from the highest quality meats, seafood, and more delivered right to your door, meal planning will never be something to worry about again.