Originally published June 7 2012
Use food to boost your mood
by PF Louis
(NaturalNews) Until we get solid with a steady diet of non-processed, mostly organic foods without sugar or high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) or synthetic sweeteners, we are likely to be hooked into the cycle of fake foods for moods. Comfort foods, ice creams, pastries, candies are available everywhere to soothe us when we're depressed or edgy.
All types of alcohol are abundant for chilling out or unwinding. Need a pick me up? Grab a coffee to go with some pastry. Or maybe on a hot day grab an overly large soda with chips. Those ubiquitous yummy fast foods and processed snack foods are laced with sugar and monosodium glutamate (MSG), and the more you eat, the more you want.
Meanwhile, your emotional and mood neurotransmitters, dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) are being stimulated artificially. There's not enough nutrition to compensate the short thrill or chill from your spiking blood sugar, stressing your endocrine system, or feeding low grade infections, which all add up to destroying health over time.
Another trap to escape is the habit of eating bleached white flour grains. Most pasta, breads, and pizzas fall into the category. Those temporary pleasant feelings require more snacking and drinking with less and less intake of wholesome foods. Then you've become a junk food junky.
Healthy foods that naturally influence moodsUnless one's junk food diet has led to obesity or some form of diabetes, a heart condition, or liver problems, it's not easy to get off junk/processed food and beverages cold turkey. But if you are a meat eater, humanely raised unadulterated turkey meat can help.
Turkey contains tryptophan, a neurotransmitter that boosts serotonin to help us feel good. Milk does that also, but it's wise to find a raw milk source if you consume it. High protein foods, including fish and eggs, boost dopamine and norepinephrine production, which is good for concentration, alertness, and stabilizing mood swings.
Bananas boost dopamine and serotonin output, as well as avocados, whole grains, and vegetables. Any omega-3 source food, such as avocado, sardines, fresh cold water salmon, flax, and chia seeds will help the brain balance out while reducing inflammation everywhere.
When it comes to replacing those bleached white flour breads, muffins, or bagels, Ezekiel products offer sprouted whole grain breads without preservatives. That's why you'll find them in health food store freezers. Most European dark breads, rye or pumpernickel, are good. Read labels to avoid chemical preservatives or buy from a trusted bakery.
Whole Foods bakery doesn't use potassium bromate to bake their breads. Potassium bromate releases bromides (bromine) that replace iodine in the thyroid gland, creating mental and physical problems, including cancer. Whole Foods bakery offers a sourdough sprouted whole wheat bread that's as healthy as bread can get.
GABA is a neurotransmitter that calms things down. Manic behavior, anxiety, irritability, aggressiveness, and insomnia are all signs of this GABA deficiency. A balanced intestinal flora helps with that.
Probiotic supplements and foods can help restore intestinal flora balance to create gut health to positively influence both neurological and physiological health issues. All fermented foods, kefirs, and yogurts, especially homemade, are great probiotic providers. Sorry, most commercial yogurts and kefirs fall way short.
No one knows how proper intestinal flora balance affects behavior better than Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD. She created the GAPS (gut and psychology syndrome) diet to cure her young autistic son. She has written a book titled Gut and Psychology Syndrome (http://www.gaps.me/).
Her book explains the gut - brain relationship while outlining a diet to balance the gut-brain connection for curing a wide range of maladies from allergies to autism. Amazing, but Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has known of this connection for some time.
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