In part 2 of my blog series (see Part 1) “Stay happy, healthy and beautiful during the cold season” we will have a look at food which is influencing the serotonin level in your body, which will make you happy.
Especially in the cold & dark winter days we often feel tired, weak, and are looking forward to the warm days filled with sunshine. We forget that we can actually influence our mood a lot.
E.g. have you ever experienced the exaltation that occurs after some time of running? If you exercise physically and slightly exceed your physical limits, your serotonin level will rise and cause euphoric feelings. The hormone serotonin is there to make us happy.
Without serotonin, we are sad, anxious or even depressed. Only the serotonin in our brain is responsible for the good feelings. However, most of the serotonin is located in our gut. There it does not create a happy mood, but muscle contractions so that we can go to the toilet.
There are many factors that can lead to a lack of serotonin in the brain. Apart from stress, our diet has a strong impact. Serotonin needs the amino acid tryptophan for its formation, which we can only ingest via food. The body is best able to absorb tryptophan through plant-based foods. Here you can find some of the superfoods, with a high level of Tryptophan:
First of all – eating nuts does not necessarily lead to gaining weight. Nuts do have a lot of fat, but it is natural fat, which means the body can work with it in a totally different way than with processed fat. Studies conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and the University of Navarre have shown that eating a handful of cashews a day can even help you lose weight. Another component is the high proportion of vegetable protein and especially Tryptophan, which not only brightens up your mood because it raises our serotonin levels but also reduces weight.
Quinoa looks like cereals but belongs to the family of bush tail plants, as well as beetroot or spinach. Since it does not contain gluten, quinoa is a good alternative for people who need to eat gluten-free. Quinoa contains the amino acid tryptophan. Tryptophan helps in the production of the happiness hormone serotonin and thus ensures a good mood. In addition, Quinoa is also a wonderful vegetable protein source, protects the red blood cells from free radicals and helps against migraine thanks to its high manganese content.
Sesame has a perfect amino acid profile for us. This means that we get all our protein requirements in a very healthy way. It also contains six times more calcium than cow’s milk and has an optimal calcium-magnesium ratio, which the body needs to absorb both substances well. Calcium is one of the most important substances for our bones and teeth, magnesium calms the nerves and counteracts tension in general. Further, it has a high level of Tryptophan.
If you use that food every now and then to fill up your serotonin level and have a walk outside in the fresh air – you should stay pretty happy during winter 🙂