When life presents us with challenges, It’s important to keep our spirits high and participate in activities which have a positive effect on our minds. Discover which foods boost mood and natural remedies to reduce anxiety and stress.
8 Ways to Boost Your Mood
- Focus on keeping yourself well (or recovering if you’ve been sick). Nourishing your body and mind is essential right now. Learn how to boost your immune system naturally.
- Eat as healthy as possible and avoid gorging on sugar as it depletes energy levels, crashes your mood and triggers anxiety.
- Do some exercise. There are plenty of virtual workouts available online, from yoga and Zumba to body pump and spin classes. Exercise lifts our mood and makes us feel good.
- Stay connected with friends and family via email, phone or video calls. Support each other to boost morale.
- Keep your brain engaged. Read books you’ve always wanted to read, learn something new via an online course or catch up with things around the house.
- Enjoy spending time with loved ones. Talk, play games and appreciate each other’s company.
- Help others in need. Sometimes the best way to take our mind off things is to focus on someone else. Can you help a neighbour or friend out in some way? Perhaps you can drop off some shopping or walk their dog.
- Avoid negative media coverage (including the news) as much as you can. All the doom and gloom doesn’t do our mental health any favours.
Foods to Boost Your Mood
- Nutritious vegetables such as dark green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, rocket), chard, mustardgreens, turnip greens, broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, fresh parsley and chives, mushroom.
- Oily fish such as sardines, anchovies, mackerel, herring and salmon. Fish is high in the omega 3 fatty acids needed for brain health.
- Nuts and seeds, especially pumpkin and sesame seeds as they contain important minerals to help regulate mood.
- Bananas are high in B6, a nutrient required for serotonin production.
- Fermented foods such as kimchi, sauerkraut and kefir as these foods are great for your gut and help promote the growth of ‘good’ gut bacteria. Up to 90% of our serotonin receptors are found in the gut so a healthy microbiome is essential for mood and brain health.
- Oatmeal is a great choice for breakfast as it is low GI (Glycaemic Index). It provides a sustained release of energy, keeping your blood sugars and mood stable.
- Beans and lentils are a fantastic source of B vitamins which help to regulate mood and make neurotransmitters.
Natural Remedies to Lift Your Mood
- Omega 3 fish oils. If you suffer with low mood, supplementing with a fish oil is recommended. Liquid fish oils are highly concentrated and supply a higher dose of omega 3, the essential fatty acids needed for brain function.
- St John’s Wort is a herb which has been used for centuries to treat low mood and anxiety. It’s a nerve tonic with anti-depressant properties. If you take any form of medication (especially anti-depressants or the oral contraceptive pill), please exercise caution and speak to your healthcare practitioner before taking St John’s Wort.
- B vitamins, zinc and magnesium – these are important nutrients for regulating mood.
- Bach flower remedies: Rescue Remedy is an excellent remedy for stress, anxiety and overwhelm. Mimulus is indicated for fear, anxiety and worry. Elm is for when you feel completely overwhelmed.