Boosting your mood can be as simple as eating more plants especially when you’re faced with menopausal mood swings!
Not only are plants high in vitamins & minerals, nutrients, omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants, they contain fiber.
Fiber is only found in plant foods and is responsible for the health of your microbiome.
Your microbiome or gut bacteria need fiber to do their job – which we are learning is an integral part of your overall health, including your mood.
You’ve probably heard of the gut-brain connection.
In fact, you’ve more than likely experienced your brain connecting to your gut when you’re facing something exciting or scary because you’ve had to take a quick trip to the bathroom!
But there’s another side to the equation.
An unhealthy gut can create stress and anxiety.
Think about that…
If you’re not feeding your gut bacteria the food it needs to function it could be resulting in more than just gastrointestinal problems, you could be feeling anxious and depressed.
Yes, you could be feeling emotionally crappy simply because you’re eating crap.
Your good gut bacteria are responsible for over 70% of your immune system and make over 50% of your happy feel-good hormones, serotonin, and dopamine.
So as well as binding to unwanted estrogen and removing it from your body (helping to balance your hormones and your mood)…
the fiber in plants is also independently helping to improve your mood.
Any wonder why I bang on about the need to eat more plants!
Remember it’s only plants that contain fiber that feed your good gut bacteria.
All animal products (meat, chicken, fish, eggs, etc), dairy, liquid oils, and processed foods do NOT contain fiber.
Plants are all…
– Whole grains (oats, quinoa, brown rice, etc)
– Legumes (beans & lentils)
– Olives, avocadoes, nuts & seeds (although they are mainly healthy fats)
Some plant foods have been shown to improve mood in their own right because of the particular nutrients they contain.
Omega-3 found in flaxseeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, and walnuts, have been shown to reduce depression and anxiety.
Low levels of antioxidants have been linked to anxiety, and while all fruit and vegetables are rich in antioxidants, blueberries and leafy greens top the list.
We know that getting out in the sun and getting our Vitamin D is super important for our mood but certain foods like mushrooms are high in Vitamin D, and have been linked to decreased depression and increased happiness.
Studies show that magnesium can keep depression at bay so another good reason to eat leafy greens, seeds, whole grains, beans, and lentils which are all good sources of magnesium.
L-theanine an amino acid present in green tea may help reduce anxiety and if you don’t like green tea you can always add it to your smoothies or sprinkle it on your breakfast.
Tryptophan is an amino acid that is converted into serotonin a hormone that can boost our mood and reduce symptoms of depression, so grab some pumpkin seeds and have oats for breakfast, as they are great sources.
So remember that the gut-brain connection is a two-way street.
Our brain can affect our gut, like anxiety sending us for a quick trip to the toilet, or worry reducing our hunger.
AND the health of your gut can affect your mood.
The health of your gut is dependent on what you’re feeding your good gut bacteria.
Do you need any more reasons to make eating plants the focus of every meal?
Click Below to Read More
Counting calories is synonymous with the dreaded ‘D’ word… dieting.Just the word 'calorie' can send a shiver up the spine. It triggers memories of deprivation and misery... and ultimately failure. But we need some kind of weight loss strategy because the stats are not...
Could sugar be the underlying problem for women trying to lose weight in menopause?We've got the media telling us weight loss is hard if not impossible after 50 (some doctors have even told my clients that!) And you've either experienced… Never struggling with your...
The problem with being drawn into alluring diets promising quick weight loss is that they don’t work.On average, weight loss attempts last four weeks for women and six weeks for men, and have a 98% fail rate! While I'm not a fan of diets, I’m also aware that, if...