14 Foods To Make You Happy, Energized And Alert

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While the act of eating always makes you happy, the aftermath can have the opposite effects. We’re talking bloating, lethargy, and even feelings of depression (and guilt, depending on what you’re snacking on!) But these foods are guaranteed to make you feel sharper, brighter, energized and positive. So if you want to emotionally eat, be sure you’re eating the right emotions!

Oranges

The Vitamin C helps push oxygen through your body and up to your brain, giving you a burst of energy. In addition, citrus smells have been shown to have soothing effects. Think of that yoga teacher that always burns orange incense.

Fish

Bad fat will plump up your hips and put you in a worse mood, but the good fat otherwise known as omega-3 fat helps protect your brain cells, upping your mood and overall brain function and reducing that sluggish feeling. Fish also leaves you feeling lighter after a meal than most other forms of protein.

Chicken noodle soup

Not only does the soup come with comforting memories of childhood when your mom would nurse you back from a cold, but also the liquid-fiber-protein combination fills you with energy, improving your mood instantly.

Chard

Chard is a woman’s best friend. Packed with magnesium, it’s been shown to help females better manage stress, fight symptoms of PMS and sleep better. And a good night’s sleep can make a world of difference to our moods!

Spinach

Another leafy green to fight the blues, spinach is loaded with antioxidants which defend the brain against mood-killing free radicals. Spinach also offers a good dose of folic acid, which has been suggested to help fight depression.

Red meat

Nearly 80% of women are iron deficient and don’t even know it. So don’t shy away from the occasional burger or bolognaise sauce. Without enough iron, blood struggles to get to your brain, making you feel constantly exhausted. Vegetarians, try a black bean patty for your fill of iron.

Fruit preserves

Jam, Fig Newton’s and sorbet with berries have been shown to ignite serotonin production, our body’s own antidepressant. Spread jam on an English muffin when you’re feeling antsy at night, or down during the day.

Blueberries

The food is blue but the emotion that comes with it, not so much. Brimming with antioxidants, blueberries promote smooth functioning of our neural pathways, making you feel more alert and energized.

Dried cherries

Next time you’re craving a late night snack, grab a handful of these tart treats. Cherries offer melatonin, a crucial compound for good sleep. Plus the carbs help produce relaxing serotonin.

Blue potatoes

Head to your local health food store, co-op or Farmers Market for this rare starch. Blue potatoes contain antioxidants called anthocyanins, which help protect neurological cells. They often reduce brain inflammation, a common cause of depression and short-term memory loss.

Mussels

This slimy seafood boasts Iodine, Selenium and Zinc, all of which support the thyroid gland, which directly affects our moods. Add to that the Vitamin B12, which fortifies your brain cells, helping you feel more alert.

Dark chocolate

How happy are you that this made our list? Dark chocolate promotes blood flow to your brain, as well as instantly improves concentration and moods. It just takes a few ounces of the sweet and bitter stuff to get the perks.

Greek yogurt

With more calcium than milk, this creamy breakfast item sends happiness-provoking neurotransmitters throughout the brain. An added bonus is the extra protein, which means you’ll crave less food. And we could all use that.

Asparagus

Half of the diagnosed cases of depression are linked to low levels of folate. That’s it! Extra doses of the stuff, which is found in asparagus, can drastically improve moods. This tall veggie also contains tryptophan, which the brain needs to make mood-stabilizing serotonin.

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