Top 12 Foods That Make You Feel Happy

Happy Woman Eating Salads

What if you could take a pill and you would instantly get over your depression and be happy? Or what about the cheering potion from Harry Potter? Neither of those things actually exist, of course, but there are some foods that contain supplements that have been shown in clinical trials to improve your mood. You may not be able to take a magic pill that will instantly make you joyful, but you can definitely eat some of these foods in order to combat depression, relieve anxiety, or just improve your mood when you’re having a bad day.

1. Strawberries

Here’s the thing that you probably didn’t know about the fruit that makes our shortcakes so delicious. Strawberries not only contain vitamin C, which has been shown to improve moods, but it also provides you with much-needed potassium, which helps with nerve cell generation and helps to regulate all of the other minerals that you put into your body.

2. Salmon

Okay, so not everyone likes fish. But for those who do, salmon is packed chock-full of good things for your body. For example, it has omega-3 fatty acids, as well as vitamin D, both of which help release serotonin, which is the “feel-good” hormone. A five-year study showed that people with depression were sad or angry less often that included fatty fish like salmon three times a week. So, add some salmon to your diet and you might just find that your depression lessens.

3. Sunflower

Ah, the Sunflower. It is such a beautiful plant, growing tall in gardens and yards all over the country and starring in games like Plants vs. Zombies. But those seeds that you can find just about anywhere contain all sorts of goodies. Two of them are selenium and magnesium. Both of these supplements are supposed to give you a rush of positive emotion. Plus, the amino acids in Sunflowers help to increase serotonin, which we discussed earlier.

4. Yogurt

Some women go through severe mood swings when it is “that time of the month.” But Yogurt has actually been shown to decrease depression, sadness, and crying, and irritability during PMS. This is because of the calcium in yogurt. A diet that contains around 1,300 mg of yogurt made those women in the study feel better because one cup of yogurt contains over 400 mg of calcium. Two cups of yogurt will give you your daily recommended amount, and you’ll pick up the rest from other sources. So, yogurt might be what perks you up when you’re feeling down. It’s also delicious.

5. Walnuts

Walnuts have a whole lot of antioxidants and Omega-3’s as well as a mood-stabilizing supplement called magnesium. The Omega 3-s boost your mood while the magnesium keeps it stable. A study showed that those who are deficient in magnesium (combined with too much calcium) have depression signs including trouble sleeping, being irritated, and suffering from extreme anxiety. So, you can eat walnuts alone, or you can put them on a salad or a bunch of other foods.

6. Cherry Tomatoes

Cherry tomatoes contain the antioxidant Lycopene. Lycopene is great for your mental health because it reduces brain inflammation. Inflammation is the body’s response to a disease or toxin and brain inflammation some experts believe that brain inflammation leads to depression symptoms. So, what have you got to lose? Make a salad with some cherry tomatoes and see if you feel better afterward.

7. Popcorn

That’s right, your favorite movie snack is jam-packed with carbohydrates, which cause a major increase in serotonin levels. That makes us happy and improves our mood, helping us to relax. Unfortunately, carbs also can cause weight gain if you eat too much of them. The good news is, there are carbs that aren’t going to keep you from getting into that bathing suit. You want carbs that are low in sugar and have a lot of fiber. You can get those carbs from fruit and veggies and whole grains including - you guessed it - popcorn.

8. Oregano

You know oregano. It’s that spice that you put on pizza, spaghetti, and some other foods, But eating more of it will allow you to imbibe the caffeic acid, rosmarinic acid, and quercetin. All three of these supplements have been shown to help with depression. They are also supposed to help with anxiety and give you energy.

9. Bananas

Okay, you monkeys. Be sure to eat your bananas. They are rich in potassium which gives you energy, as well as magnesium which we talked about earlier. They also contain Vitamin B6 which is a supplement that you need for the successful creation of the neurotransmitters like the often-discussed serotonin as well as dopamine. These are chemicals directly responsible for your happiness and energy

10. Eggs

You’ve heard the commercials. The incredible, edible egg. It’s true: eggs contain so many goodies you should make eating them a priority if you are suffering from depression symptoms. Eggs contain zinc, omega-3 fatty acids, protein, and iodine. Oh, and let’s not forget that eggs contain the protein you need.  It really is an incredible food because all these things help to combat depression in some way and they are good for helping increase brain activity and give you a boost of energy

11. Turkey

The next item on our list is a turkey. You know when you eat turkey and you feel sleepy and satisfied? Turns out that turkey contains tryptophan which is a mild sedative and produces niacin and serotonin, both of which will improve your mood.

12. Oysters

Oysters not only help with anxiety because of the zinc in them that acts as a mood stabilizer, but Oysters are also an aphrodisiac, creating feelings of attraction and love in some people. Zinc is important to your body because if you get stressed, your zinc levels drop, so eat some oysters and improve your mood. Then, you might even want to find your significant other and play.

Images source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

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