Depression Food intolerances Gut health Vitamin D

10 steps to a happy mood using food.

Supporting your mood with the right diet is easier than you think. Here are 10 tips to get you started …

  1. Avoid foods that play havoc with your blood sugar levels. Keep sugar, artificial sweeteners, fizzy drinks and sweet foods out of your diet.
  2. Eat protein. Plenty of it with each meal and snack to help balance your blood sugar and consequently balance your mood too.
  3. Identify food intolerances. Continuing to eat foods that your body is intolerant to stores up trouble for your health and mental well-being. The initial adrenaline rush is quickly followed by a low, over time your body will struggle to adapt leaving you permanently feeling low and lacking in energy.
  4. Don’t skip the good fats. Having fats in your diet helps to keep your mind healthy, especially oily fish. Feel free to snack on other nutrient dense fatty foods like nuts, avocados and olives too. The balance of ‘good’ fats in your diet is important too. You can test your levels with a postal kit from our shop.
  5. Cut out the ‘bad’ fats. It’s fairly easy to identify a bad fat. Anything deep fried in vegetable oil = pretty bad fat, any ‘hydrogenated’ fat listed on any label = pretty bad too. These fats interfere with the uptake of healthy fats from oily fish causing problems with neurotransmitter signalling.
  6. Ensure your vitamin D is optimal. This is super important if you find that you struggle more with mood issues in the winter months. Ask your GP to run a test or order a postal test through us.
  7. Restore good gut bacteria. If you have had antibiotics (ever) or a history of candida or fungal infections then chances are your gut flora need a boost. Try fermented foods or probiotics supplements but increase levels slowly to avoid feeling worse before feeling better.
  8. Sleep better. A undisturbed nights’ sleep is vital to good mood and stress resilience. It also helps us make healthier food choices the next day. Aim to get around seven hours sleep, keep your room dark and keep gadgets out of your room.
  9. Drink water. Being dehydrated will leave you tired and feeling low. Be sure to drink two glasses of water on rising and then continue to sip on water throughout the day. If you are a committed coffee/tea drinker then try to make sure your not attempting to satisfy your thirst with those drinks by having a small glass of water before every cup of coffee/tea.
  10. Boost your B vitamins. Ensure you are getting enough B12 and folate. Choose animal products and leafy green vegetables for optimal intake or take a good quality B complex.


    Sarah is a clinical nutritionist specialising in mental wellbeing and the gut-brain connection.

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