Clean Eating - - RECIPES -

1Turmeric is an an­tiox­i­dant-rich root that boosts dopamine and sero­tonin lev­els. A 2015 study in the Jour­nal of Psy­chophar­ma­col­ogy found that cur­cumin, the pri­mary an­tiox­i­dant com­po­nent in turmeric, not only boosted cog­ni­tive func­tion but also im­proved mood in study par­tic­i­pants. Cur­cumin is best ab­sorbed when com­bined with black pep­per.

2Wild Alaskan salmon is rich in in­flam­ma­tion-re­duc­ing omega-3 fatty acids and mus­cle-build­ing pro­tein. Fish is of­ten re­ferred to as “brain food” be­cause it sup­plies es­sen­tial fats that al­low brain mem­branes to per­form at peak level, which is key for the reg­u­la­tion of mood.

3Yogurt & other fer­mented foods are rich in pro­bi­otics to help pro­mote a healthy gut. A 2013 study from UCLA found that women who had eaten pro­bi­otic-rich yo­gurt twice a day for 4 weeks showed a sig­nif­i­cant de­crease in brain ac­tiv­ity in the neu­ral net­works that help con­trol emo­tional and sen­sory be­hav­ior. The study au­thors con­cluded that the con­nec­tion be­tween your brain and your gut goes both ways – and what you eat im­pacts your brain’s sen­sory pro­cess­ing and emo­tion. This con­nec­tion is why you may feel sen­sa­tions in your gut (aka but­ter­flies in your stom­ach) when you get emo­tional, and why pro­bi­otic-rich foods may tem­per those emo­tional re­sponses.

4Co­conut oil has been crit­i­cized by the med­i­cal com­mu­nity for its abil­ity to raise choles­terol. But when it comes to de­pres­sion, that may be a good thing. A meta-anal­y­sis in the An­nals of Be­hav­ioral Medicine demon­strated that low to­tal choles­terol is associated with higher rates of de­pres­sion. Check out our res­i­dent nutri­tion­ist Jonny Bow­den’s take on co­conut oil, “Co­conut Oil Is Not a Vil­lain,” at cleaneat­ing.com.

5Se­same seeds are rich in magnesium, a min­eral that helps con­trol your stress re­sponse. Sesame oil, on the other hand, is rich in ty­ro­sine, which helps make NE.

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