Years ago, experts thought that the brain was not affected by the food that was ingested. A supposed “blood barrier” prevented them from causing changes in that organ. But now it is known that the foods we eat affect the mood and make us feel happy, sad, irritable, alert or sleepy. Some improve memory, give energy or satisfy insatiable appetites.
Carbohydrates, for example, are natural energetics. That is why people ingest them in the morning (bread, cereals, fruits), and look for pasta, desserts … especially when they are depressed because they influence the substances in the brain, which affect the way they feel. They stimulate the release of insulin from the pancreas, which causes low levels of amino acids in the blood, except for tryptophan. It enters the brain and becomes serotonin, a neurotransmitter that sends messages to nerve cells. Serotonin helps regulate sleep, reduces pain and appetite, and improves mood.
It has been observed that sugar has a calming effect on newborns because it stimulates endorphins, which calm stress and discomfort. Some drinks such as coffee, tea, and cola are stimulants of the nervous system; However, although one or two cups of coffee reduce fatigue, high doses can cause nervousness, headache agitation, and decreased the ability to concentrate.
You have to eat fruits and vegetables, since a diet low in vitamins C and B cause fatigue, depression, irritability, nervousness, confusion and loss of memory. To have a good mood and healthy sleep foods that have proteins, especially tryptophan, they favor healthy sleep, good moods, and good humor, because through complex metabolic cycles it is transformed into serotonin that benefits your mind. Some of the foods where you can find tryptophan are eggs, dairy, fish, and meats.
Food to de-stress
That they are rich in nutrients: those that favor the adrenal gland are the best to reduce stress.
1. Celery: Minimizes blood pressure. Reduces the concentration of stress hormones, has soothing components. Recommended: Between 2-3 stalks of celery a day and before sleeping.
2. Brown rice: Contributes to release beneficial chemicals such as serotonin. It provides more energy for daily activity. Recommended: 4 times a week at lunch.
3. Cabbage: Has antioxidants such as vitamins A, C, and E. These combat the damaging effect of free radicals and improve mood.
4. Almonds: Its magnesium content favors adrenal function and fat metabolism because too low amounts of magnesium produce nervous tension and insomnia, among other consequences.
5. Blackberries: High content of magnesium and vitamin C. The lack of the latter makes you feel fatigued and stressed.
6. Sesame: Increases zinc, crucial for the metabolism of fatty acids.
7. Cucumber: It cools the blood and the liver, organ that helps to balance the hormones, give us vitality and improves mood.
8. Avocado: Its 14 minerals regulate body functions and stimulate growth. The iron and copper that the avocado contains helps regenerate red blood cells and prevents anemia. Among those minerals are Vitamin E, contained in whole grains, egg, soy spinach, as well as Selenium, which is also found in wheat germ, onions, broccoli, tuna, tomatoes, favor the body for recovery from stress and tension
Foods to improve concentration
One of the most important systems in our body is the nervous system and there are the B vitamins, which help the body to transform into energy the sugars of the diet and especially B12, which help keeps the nervous system in good condition, improve concentration and balance, while B6 avoids nerve disorders. The main sources of this group of vitamins are beer yeast, seaweed, meat, poultry, seafood, dairy, eggs.
Food that can stress you out
A nutritious diet helps the body to cope better with stress. Choose de-stressing foods that relax your organism, and therefore, reassure you, even more so if you live in a conflictive or hard-working environment. Avoid stress producing foods like:
1. Caffeine: Produces the release of adrenaline, directly increasing stress. It hinders metabolism and causes weight gain. You find it in coffee, tea, and soft drinks, mainly.
2. Alcohol: It does not relax you or make you feel calmer. It is one of the food sources that most generates stress to the body. It increases fatty deposits in the heart and affects the immune system. It also limits the liver’s ability to eliminate toxins
3. Salty foods: Salt increases blood pressure. Do not add pure salt to your food: let the cooking do its work with salt. Red meats such as sausage and ham have a high content of it.