The late English writer Virginia Woolf expressed the relationship between food and happiness in her literary essay “A Room for One’s One”; Which was published in 1929, with eloquent words, saying: “One cannot think well, love well, and sleep well, if eating is not good.” 1
Literature alone did not link food and happiness, as science also demonstrated a relationship between food and happiness. Numerous studies have shown that there are certain types of food that generate positive feelings in people. Foods such as vegetables, fruits, complex carbohydrates, proteins and healthy sources of fats have been linked to producing long-lasting, good feelings.
Although people with depression tend to eat sugary and fast foods to relieve depression, this happiness is “temporary” that does not last, but can then be turned into a way of harming positive feelings. In a survey of students from the University of California, American, it was found that foods that are high in carbohydrates and fats in fast food can alleviate negative emotions such as stress. As these meals were the first choice for students instead of healthy options. 2
In late 2017, researchers from the German University of Constance conducted a study on the effect of certain classes of food on happiness and the mitigation of negative moods. Of the four and ten different major food groups, vegetables had the largest share in raising the level of happiness that was monitored over eight days. While desserts resulting from fruits and vegetables came again. Dinner came third compared to snacks. 3
Here are the most important foods that raise your happiness level:
Black chocolate comes; That contains at least 70% cocoa, at the top of the list of foods that cause happiness. Black chocolate is a good source of phenolic antioxidants. 4
In a scientific review published in 2013, researchers pointed out that polyphenols; Found in abundance in black chocolate, it showed a protective effect of mental disorders similar to antidepressants. 5
In another study conducted by researchers from the University of Loma Linda in America, the researchers found a relationship between eating dark chocolate and reducing levels of tension and inflammation, in addition to enhancing memory, mood and immunity. 6
These benefits do not mean excessive consumption of black chocolate, as a hundred grams of black chocolate contains 600 calories.
Harvard University experts recommend eating one to two small pieces of chocolate daily
Green tea has been found to help reduce stress, stress and anxiety in people. Results of a Japanese study in which more than 40,000 people participated showed that the level of stress decreased by 20% among people who consumed five cups of green tea per day compared to those who drank it little or not at all.
While Chinese researchers have found that drinking green tea five times a week can relieve symptoms of depression and help improve moods. 10
Eating 3-5 cups of green tea a day is good for healthy people without chronic illnesses. 11
Whole grains, such as oats, quinoa, grits, and bulgur, can be good foods that improve a person’s happiness. It was found that foods rich in fiber; Like whole grains, it can be helpful in relieving depression. In addition to the presence of some minerals that also help in improving the mood of a person. 12
Australian researchers from the University of Melbourne found that consuming whole grains helps boost mood in individuals. 13
In another study conducted in Iran, whole grains showed great importance in improving the mood of women. With regard to refined grains; Like baked goods, bad influence on moods. 14
Shrimp and shellfish
Contain seafood; Especially shrimp and shellfish, a good amount of omega-3 acids and zinc metal. Many studies have shown the role of zinc in promoting mood. It has been found that zinc helps relieve many mental and neurological disorders, such as: depression, Alzheimer’s, hyperactivity and distraction. Studies have shown that zinc deficiency is associated with depression symptoms. 15
On the other hand, omega-3 may play a major role in relieving some depression. 16 Omega-3 acids are found in fish, nuts and some oils such as sesame oil and flax.
Fruits are among the most prominent foods that cause elation, as they are rich in many antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber. In a research review by researchers from Iran, it was found that consuming fruits improves mood and relieves depression. 17 The berries and strawberries are among the most powerful fruits that fight depression. It was found that anthocyanins; It is an antioxidant found in berries and strawberries, which has a significant effect on mood modification. 18 Bananas also contain tryptophan; It is an amino acid that boosts mood, as well as some other compounds that improve mood. 19
Several studies have linked between eating vegetables and the level of happiness in humans, as vegetables are at the forefront of food groups that relieve depression. Among the most important vegetables that fight depression are green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, lettuce, cabbage and watercress. It is rich in folic acid, which has been found important in relieving depression. 21
Sweet potatoes, with their great diabetic taste, can be a source of happiness. Its vitamin B6 content can improve mood