There are many things we can do to help keep ourselves mentally healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic. Staying connected to others, eating well, exercising and sticking to a routine are great places to start. But did you know that there are some foods that can assist to level out and even boost our mood?
You may have heard of the neurotransmitter serotonin. Together with dopamine, it is responsible for regulating mood along with a wide variety of other functions in our body. Also known as the "feel good" chemical, good levels of serotonin can contribute to a happy and healthy you.
How can we keep our serotonin levels in check? Importantly, many foods contain an amino acid called tryptophan which is a critical building block to creating serotonin. Humans rely on foods to get tryptophan as it is not created by the body. Consuming foods that are rich in tryptophan can help your body to create healthy amount of serotonin, thereby assisting in good mood.
There are number of foods that are rich in tryptophan and today we show you how you can include them in a "feel good smoothie".
MOD's top 4 mood boosting foods:
Bananas - this fruitbowl staple is packed full of tryptophan as well as vitamins A, B6 and C, fibre, potassium, phosphorous and iron
Pineapple - not just for summer, pineapple is known for its ability to aid digestive issues. It contains bromelain which has strong anti-inflammatory effects but is also a great source of tryptophan
Kiwi fruit - full of fibre, kiwi fruit are also great for keeping a healthy heart, but have also been linked to improving sleep and also contain a good dose of tryptophan
Spinach - dark, leafy veg like spinach are an amazing source of iron but is also rich in vitamins A, C and K, magnesium, iron and manganese. It is one of the best sources of tryptophan out there.
"Feel Good Smoothie"
This tasty, tropical smoothie is so moreish you'll be wanting to make it every day! Every single ingredient is known to boost mood (aside from the plant milk or coconut water, but hey, we all know the importance of good hydration!) so you can enjoy it knowing it's doing both your body and mind the world of good!
- One banana
- Handful of spinach
- Handful of chopped fresh pineapple
- 2 kiwi fruit
- One cup of plant milk or coconut water
Simply place all ingredients into your blender (we of course love our MOD Blend Pro) and whiz for 45 seconds and enjoy!
How easy is that folks? It's so easy to add feel good food to your diet. Many are lying around our fridge and fruit bowl anyway, so why not add them to your next smoothie and literally feel the benefits!
What's your favourite mood boosting recipe? We'd love to hear it!
Until next time, stay home and stay safe!
Team MOD x