WHEN YOU’RE FEELING DOWN: MACKEREL, SARDINES AND MUSHROOMS
It’s no coincidence that you’re more likely to feel good when you’ve spent time in the sun. Exposure to sunlight helps your body produce vitamin D, which is vital for the production of serotonin – a neurotransmitter that helps regulate your mood, appetite and sleep.
When you’re low on vitamin D it affects your body’s ability to stabilise your mood. Oily fish such as mackerel, sardines, salmon, trout, tuna and herring give you a double-whammy happiness boost because they’re not only a great source of vitamin D but also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are vital for brain function.
“The specific form of omega-3 that most strongly boosts mood is found most abundantly in cold water fish such as salmon, herring, sardines and mackerel,” says Dr Stephen Ilardi, author of The Depression Cure.
Omega-3 fatty acids also help reduce inflammation, which some studies indicate might be present to a greater extent in some people with depression.
Mushrooms, especially shiitake and oyster varieties, are also a good source of vitamin D.