Mood Enhancing Foods

Fox News – Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD -

Save the blues for winter – there’s nothing sad about bright sunshine, longer days, and beach-friendly temperatures. But even in the summer, things don’t always go our way – the AC broke, the food truck ran out of your favorite taco filling and mosquitos love the scent of your sunscreen. To keep your head cool (at least mentally), here are 5 mood-boosting foods to keep your summer funk from becoming less bearable than the heat wave outside.


Walnuts are well known for being high in heart healthy unsaturated fats. In addition, magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids found in walnuts have been shown to control serotonin and dopamine levels (i.e. mood hormones), which help prevent signs and symptoms of clinical depression. Just one ounce of walnuts (about 13 halves) contains over 10 percent of your body’s daily recommended magnesium needs. Just remember to pace the snacking as walnuts are composed mainly of fat, which contributes to over 90 percent of its calories.


There’s a reason kale retains its good reputation for its giant nutrient profile and low-calorie crunch. Besides a nice healthy dose of depression-fighting magnesium, kale also contains copper, a mineral important for essential cellular function and overall well-being. Copper not only stabilizes mood but also the general condition of the brain, and can decrease the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s when consumed adequately. If kale isn’t up your alley, try Swiss chard, which has a taste reminiscent of bok choy and goes well with Asian cuisine. It contains a similar nutrient profile and similar doses of mood-boosting minerals.

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