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Foods that boost mood

According to Nurses’ Health Study research, women who drank two to three cups of caffeinated coffee a day were about 15 per cent less likely to become depressed; those who drank four or more cups were at 20 per cent lower risk. We can probably thank caffeine for the happy boost—a psychoactive drug that works sort of like a harmless crack cocaine, increasing dopamine and serotonin transmission within just 30 minutes.

Walnuts

Nuts and seeds, especially these two, are loaded with alpha-linolenic acid. In research from the Nurses’ Health Study, women who had the most ALA in their diets were less likely to be depressed. Here’s how it works: When your blood levels of ALA are low, so are you; low ALA levels fan the flames of inflammation, which has been linked to depression. What’s more, low ALA also decreases levels of the brain chemicals dopamine, which is responsible for feelings of joy, and serotonin, which inhibits anger and aggression.

Chocolate

Woot! Here’s another great reason to indulge in rich, dark chocolate (the darker, the better): It’s loaded with chemicals, such as polyphenols, that might boost your mood (one polyphenol actually mimics marijuana’s mood-boosting effects.).

In a 2013 study, Australian researchers reported that volunteers who chugged the biggest dose of a dark-chocolate drink laced with zero, 250, or 500 mg of polyphenols, also got a shot of calm and contentment.Source: prevention.com

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