Mood Food, the kitchen of happiness that continues to be a trend
Eating is a pleasure and so our brain perceives it. The Mood Food supposes to give more value to the nutrients that will contribute the food to the organism so that the momentary satisfaction that food supposes, as with cravings or emotional hunger, is not as important as the well-being and health that the body will obtain after its intake.
The food and the brain connection
Our ancestors perceived food as a reward, after hunting, after picking berries, after searching for roots … a prize after an effort. This pattern is recorded in the brain and, although at an evolutionary level we have progressed, that programming is still valid and we continue to associate it as a prize and, definitely, the food is, but we have to pay special attention to how we nourish ourselves.
If we only attend to the immediate response of pleasure, as in the case of cravings, we would basically eat snacks, chocolate, junk food and simple carbohydrates, because it is studied that these processed provoke a rapid response of pleasure in the brain that is addictive. But we can control the process, for something we have evolved in every way, right?
To maintain the balance between the satisfaction that eating gives and the health of the organism, the Japanese movement Mood Food proposes to include in the diet the foods whose nutrients contribute well-being and happiness, that is, those that directly influence the mood. How is this achieved?
In the 80s, scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), observed that nutrients such as fatty acids, minerals and certain carbohydrates, directly affect brain processes and can determine the degree of a person's well-being.
The type of diet we choose it influences the physical health and also the mental health reason why an inadequate diet can alter the emotional balance, make us sick or affect our cognitive abilities. Hormones, as on many other occasions, are the key.
The well-being diet
Mood Food what it tries to promote from food is the release of hormones that cause pleasure and the contribution of certain nutrients that promote well-being, but in what way? In this Japanese philosophy of well-being are taken into account foods that contribute to this hormonal balance such as foods rich in tryptophan, selenium, Omega 3 fatty acids, and vitamins A, C, B and E.
The tryptophan is an amino acid that does not synthesize the body so it must be obtained from the diet to be able to produce serotonin. If there is a deficit of serotonin, in addition to altering the mood, it will cause undesirable food cravings, sleep problems … You can find tryptophan in bananas, nuts, seeds and legumes.
Selenium is very important for the health and well-being of the organism. It is antioxidant and neuroprotective so it helps regulate mood and prevents neuronal disorders such as memory loss or learning ability. Sources of selenium are Brazil nuts, shiitake mushrooms, chia seeds, flax or sesame seeds, brown rice, tuna, onion, garlic and dried fruits.
As for vitamins that improve mood, the vitamins of group B favor the synapse. You will find them in almonds, eggs, liver, spinach, miso, nuts, umeboshi, kefir …
Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant present in foods such as nuts and seeds. Vitamin C citrus, broccoli, kiwi, strawberries … helps lift the mood and is energizing. You will be able to get a good supply of Omega 3 fatty acids with blue fish, turmeric, nuts and seeds.
If you want to help your body to release endorphins You can add spice to your dishes and of course, do not forget the chocolate! If it is black, without sugar and with 85% better cocoa, it is one of the greatest pleasures and we can not deny that it is healthy moderating its consumption.
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How is also important
The food you eat is fundamental but It is also very important for the Mood Food movement the process that takes place until you get to ingest them. From the planning of the products that you are going to buy, the positive mood with which you are going to make the purchase or the final elaboration should be pleasant moments.
The smells when cooking, the texture of the food, the ingredients that you have decided to include in the dish, the tableware that you are going to use and the whole environment should be pleasant and so the food, not only tastes better, feeds the body but also the soul and spirit. In short, we are what we eat, what better to be happy.
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