Mood and Food: Five Tips to Avoid the Blues

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2. Eat lean protein at each meal. Protein stabilizes blood sugar and provides the brain with the amino acids essential to feeling alert. Choose fish, lean beef, pork, chicken, turkey, eggs, cheese, nuts and legumes (beans and peas).

3. Drink water. Choosing water over sugar-laden soft drinks and fruit juices will keep you hydrated and stave off food cravings. Drink eight to ten glasses of clean water daily. Replace soda and fruit juice with herbal tea and sparkling water.

4. Consume "good" fats, like olive oil and those containing omega 3's. Studies have shown that a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids may contribute to depression and mood swings. Restoring the body's natural balance of omega-3s may help alleviate (and prevent) many types of depression, even for those who don't respond to traditional antidepressants. Consuming healthy fats also reduces the release of leptins, hormones produced by fat cells that signal hunger, thereby reducing food cravings. Choose avocados, nuts, olives, olive oil, fish, grass-fed beef, nut butters, and omega-3 enriched eggs.

5. Avoid fast food and chain restaurants. These are stocked with highly processed, sugary foods containing "bad" fats that can wreak havoc on your blood sugar and mood. When you do eat out, try to make the healthiest choices available. Choose greens and proteins, a turkey burger wrapped in lettuce instead of a bun, lemon juice and olive oil over commercial sauces and dressings, a fruit plate instead of a sugary desert. Avoid white bread, potatoes, rice and pasta.

Sample mood-balancing menu from Insulite Laboratories:

Breakfast: Bowl of sweetness. Mix together 1/3 cup of chopped mixed nuts (pecans, cashews, macadamia and almonds), 1 tbsp. melted butter, cinnamon, ginger, 1 cup blueberries (and/ or sliced strawberries), 1-2 tsp. cream.