If you only do one thing this week… Boost your Mood with these Super Nutrients!

Even the best of us can get a case of the grumps from time to time! But if there was ever a month that affected us most, I reckon the unanimous decision would be that it is January! And, according to statistics, the second to last Monday in January is the worst! Known as “Blue Monday” this day is said to be the most depressing day of the year! So on that dreary note… here are some nutrients that will help boost you mood and spirit!

Folate – Some scientists have discovered that low levels of folate have been linked to depression. A folate deficiency can also negatively affect the metabolism of serotonin, dopamine and noradrenaline, which are all neurotransmitters that are important for your mood. Foods high in folate (also known as vitamin B9) include spinach, lentils and avocados – we feel a yummy green salad coming on!

Magnesium – This is a good one! Magnesium is super important for regulating and boosting your mood and has also been known to improve sleep. But did you know that sugar can actually cause our kidneys to secrete magnesium? Just when you thought sugar couldn’t get any worse, it causes magnesium deficiencies! (One more reason to not eat sugar!) Sprinkle some pumpkin seeds on your porridge in the morning or add some mackerel to you dinner for a peaceful sleep!

Tryptophan – Who’s dug in to a big bowl of pasta when they’re feeling a bit down in the dumps to make themselves feel better? Well, funnily enough there is some sense in why we do that, and it’s all to do with an amino acid called Tryptophan. Mood-boosting carbohydrates aid in the absorption of tryptophan in the brain and helps convert it into the happy hormone, serotonin! Foods high in tryptophan include turkey, bananas and an array of nuts and seeds.

Omega 3 – Again, like folate, increasing your intake of omega 3s has been shown to help people overcome depressive like symptoms and negatives outlooks. Omega 3s also help cushion the brain cells and have a stabilizing effect on our moods. Salmon is a great source of vitamin B12, which is a mood lifting vitamin! Other sources of omega 3s include flax seeds and walnuts. Breakfast smoothie anyone? 

Iron – Iron deficiencies are often linked to conditions like anaemia where we feel very lethargic and a bit lack-lustre. It’s also very common in women who have (e’hem) heavy periods! H&H suggests foods like spinach, chickpeas and raw cacao! Theres always an excuse for chocolate! Why not try our Healthy Vegan Chocolate Cake recipe for a iron boost?

words by Molly Jennings