Foods for Mood

Food and Mood

Food and mood are inextricably linked.

Some of our warmest memories are of meals spent with loved ones.

One bite of your mom’s blueberry pie can bring back a flood of memories.

blue berry pie

It just goes to show that food can have profound effects on your moods.

We are complete- physically and mentally –  when we eat delicious good food.

While there are plenty of foods that bring us short term contentment or pleasure…

 A lot of them bring guilt, remorse and love handles.

The majority of what we eat should contribute to our long term health and happiness. And there are plenty of foods  that are proven to have substantial emotional health benefits.healthy food

Aside from the purely emotional satisfaction of food, there are ways it can boost your mood by changing your body chemistry:

  1. Increase serotonin levels – Foods containing serotonin and tryptophan help raise levels of this neurotransmitter that is essentially your “happiness chemical”.
  2. Produce endorphins – Just smelling certain foods can increase the endorphins in your body. chocolate, hot peppers
  3. Produce dopamine – Did you ever feel great after eating a certain meal? There are certain foods that you just feel good. That’s because they stimulate dopamine, the “reward” chemical.
  4.  Fix dietary deficiencies associated with anxiety or depression – Many cases of  emotional disorder are directly linked to certain nutritional deficits in your diet. Eating the right foods can greatly help. 

Here is a list of the essential nutrients needed for good emotional health and the delicious foods that contain them. 


A lack of B vitamins – especially B12 – Is highly correlated to depression. Eat: Sardines      Mussels,  Beef,  Beef Liver, Tuna,  Cottage Cheese.roast beef

  • Carbs

    We all know that eating carbs makes you feel great. There’s a chemical reason for that. Carbs promote serotonin production. Just be smart. You know the drill. Eat: Good Quality Complex Carbohydrates – Oats, Whole Grains, Brown Rice, Lentils and Beans.whole grain bread


    Tryptophan is the building block of serotonin. Eat: Turkey, Chicken, Fish, Cottage Cheese, Eggs, Nuts and Beans.roast turkey

    Omega 3’s

    These fatty acids are essential for proper brain function – including synthesizing neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine. Eat: Sardines, Salmon, Anchovies, Herring, Flax Seeds, Chia Seeds, Walnuts, Tofu, Dry Roasted Soybeans.sardines


    It is the happiness molecule. If you don’t have enough, you are sad. As simple as that. Eat: Plum and Cherry Tomatoes, Pineapple, Kiwis, Sour Cherries, Walnuts. Drink Green Tea.plum tomatoes



    Some special foods stimulate the production of feel-good endorphins.  Eat: Pumpkin seeds, Bananas, Avocados, Sesame Seeds, Dark Chocolate (at least 70%) and Hot peppers. Many companies make chocolate combined with hot pepper!dark chocolate


    Vitamin D

    A deficiency in D is a main culprit in depression or bi-polar disorders.  Eat: Sardines, Salmon, Beef Liver, Grass-fed Cheese, Pasture-raised eggs.eggs


    Women are especially prone to a deficiency in folate (folic Acid)  Eat: Spinach, Kale, Romaine Lettuce, Lentils and Garbanzo Beans (Hummus).hummus


    Another essential nutrient for mental and emotional well being. Eat: Brazil Nuts, Oatmeal, Brown Rice, Beans, Lentils and Sardines.brazil nuts

    Probiotics and Prebiotic Fiber

    90% of the serotonin in your body resides in your gut. The influence of your intestinal flora over your moods is becoming more and more evident. Eat: Yogurt, Fresh Saurkraut, Fresh Pickles, Kimchi, Kombucha, Miso, Netto, Tiger Nuts, Sunchokes, Dandelion Greens, Onions.kimchi

And The Winners Are……

These foods are packed with the most nutrients that promote emotional well being. Make sure to include them in diet along with plenty of leafy greens and fruits.

Sardines – B12, tryptophan, selenium, omega 3’s, Vitamin D

Grass-Fed Beef/Beef liver – B12, Vitamin D, tryptophan

Cottage Cheese – Tryptophan, Vitamin D, B12

Lentils – Good Carbs, Folate, Selenium, Tryptophan

Also, check out our “feel good” recipes that include many of the best mood foods.

===> 14 Ways to Improve Your Mood Naturally

===> Best Herbs for Anxiety and Depression

===> Best Supplements for Mood


Breakfast: Cottage Cheese, Chia seeds, Pineapple, walnuts, oatmeal, cocoa powder

Lunch:  Ceasar Salad with anchovies, Spinach omelet

Dinner:  Grass-fed roast beef, lentils and brown rice, dandelion greens

Snack: Hummus with whole wheat pita. Brazil nuts, pumpkin seeds, bananas