Our body is a masterpiece, a ballet of chemicals reacting and combining, synthesizing and colliding, all working with the same end in mind, that being harmony. We can relate that harmony to a fancy word called homeostasis, which is a way to define systematic balance within the body. When we are able to strike that balance, we surely know it, we feel it from our head to our toes and part of that balanced feeling is reflected in our mood. And I bet you guessed it, mood is dependent on food.
Now, getting back to that fancy word homeostasis, we need to figure out what our body needs to get there, to get harmonized, to get balanced. First, we need water. Our body’s systems require hydration for normal functioning. The key to staying hydrated is taking in more water than we lose. Second, we need food. Food is what nourishes our body and what provides the essential fats, proteins, carbohydrates and vitamins and minerals required for every cellular function in our body. This includes the metabolism of glucose into energy, which works to provide the body with a constant supply of energy and also works to balance blood sugar and maintain healthy insulin levels. But, sorry to say, finding and striking balance within the body is not that easy. It takes an educated effort and diligence. Time and patience monitoring how you feel after certain meals and journaling your water and food intake, at least until you can find a pattern, good or bad, and tweak it according to the tips that follow.
The truth is, not just any food will do for a balanced body reflected in an amazing mood. We all know this, but we have made the choice to override this concept and fly right through a drive-thru. But, we can only fool ourselves for a short time. Fast food, donuts, candy and other processed food products effect the way we feel. They make us feel wonderful for five minutes and then, as our body works to process all of the artificial ingredients, sugars and hydrogenated fats, we begin to feel horrible and curse the nacho-pizza-chicken burger we just ate. There is a term for this feeling, food induced hyperglycemia, or a severe spike in blood sugar, followed by food induced hypoglycemia, better known as low blood sugar. This wacky up and down creates an unstable environment in our blood, causing our insulin response to deregulate and overtime, an increased probability of developing type II diabetes. But what is truly fascinating is that it also creates a bad mood and even more fascinating, eating whole foods rich in vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, low glycemic carbohydrates and lean proteins can reverse this and lead you to a happier, healthier harmonized self!
Ok, so what are the whole foods rich in vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, low glycemic carbohydrates and lean proteins that can reverse all of this unbalanced blood sugar stuff and lead me to a happier, healthier harmonized self? That is just what you are about to read and these are the tips you should use to tweak the patterns you will discover in your food journal.
Whole foods are foods that have not been processed. They are found throughout the perimeter of grocery stores, not in the aisles. Think produce, fish, meat, and poultry, eggs, dairy, grains, nuts and seeds. Whole foods provide nutrients that are unadulterated and free of added chemicals and fillers. Whole foods are metabolized at a slower rate than processed foods and whole foods normalize blood sugar. When a whole food is processed in the body, not in a factory, your body does the work. This increases the amount of nutrients your body absorbs, increases the time the nutrients remain in the body, increases your satiety response and maintains your insulin levels creating a balanced internal environment, homeostasis, which directly shines through mood! Yes, eating whole foods equals good mood. Go try it! Here are some ideas:
Apples with Almonds
Broccoli with Garlic and Olive Oil
Grilled Salmon and Kale
Shrimp and Asparagus
Collard Greens and Chicken
Brown Rice and Sea Bass
Ahi Tuna and Radish Salad
Nuts, Seeds, Hemp, Flax
Peppers, Carrots, Onions
Cage Free Eggs, Organic Dairy
Olives, Chives, Cilantro
The list goes on and on! Simply experiment with any and every fruit, vegetable, herb, spice, whole grain, organic free-range meat, fish, hormone-free dairy and egg. Have fun with it, google recipes, find some beautiful whole food cookbooks and start getting creative. You will find that over time your food will increase your mood and you will be one harmonized whole food lover!