How Food Affects your Mood
Few things affect our state of mind, aka our mood, as profoundly as food. Women being propelled by some mysterious hormonal force to eat chocolate during PMS is one good example. There’s just something in that chocolate that makes them feel so good!
Aside from the emotional ties around food, such as associating it with celebration or entertainment, there is also the physiological side that affects our mood. We’ve all seen children throwing fits in the cereal aisles or at the checkout stand where all the sweets have been placed for impulse buying. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never seen such outbursts in the broccoli aisle.
People crave almost instinctively comfort foods which are high in carbohydrates, which the body immediately converts into sugar in the bloodstream upon consumption. Consuming processed and refined foods which contain exorbitant amounts of sugars and artificial ingredients and practically no dietary fiber renders the eater into a blood sugar nightmare.
Even cooked starches that some consider healthy such as potatoes, rice and pasta are converted into simple sugars quickly in the body. This gives an immediate burst of false energy and a short-lived sense of well being, followed by a nasty letdown and what some call ‘self induced hypoglycemia.’
In order to feel better after the letdown phase, which can make people feel exhausted, cranky and unable to focus, the body compels one to simply eat more of the substance that gave it that happy rush in the first place. Now we see how we get set up for addictions. Ever tried to be in a good mood, feel jubilant about life or get lots of work done when you are in the throes of caffeine withdrawal?
The main function of most anti-depressants on the market is to enhance the uptake of that famous ‘feel-good hormone’ serotonin. When this brain chemical is low, people crave carbohydrates and comfort foods in order to get it.
But if we learn how to nourish the brain properly, we need not suffer from nutrient or serotonin deficiencies and consequently we can avoid the addictions that keep us bound to the constant highs and lows. There is a sound and foolproof way to accomplish this.
One of the main reasons a raw vegan diet is so helpful in maintaining stable moods is due to the fact that there are no toxins, addictive substances or artificial ingredients in living foods. Moreover, raw foods are loaded with fiber to keep the intestinal tract and colon in tip top shape as well as clean.
If the colon is overloaded with waste, this waste is recirculated in the bloodstream again and again. How peaceful and blissful do you think you can feel with your body’s own waste nourishing your brain? Consumption of foods that are high in fiber and natural sugars also eliminates the wild roller coaster blood sugar swings which are notorious for ultimately depleting our serotonin supplies.
After a period of detoxification, which may sometimes be a bumpy road as our emotions are detoxified as well, the mind becomes clearer and sharper. Better health also brings an improved outlook on life and renewed hope that other improvements are possible. When we begin to look better, perhaps by dropping a few pounds or our skin clears up, we definitely begin to strike a more cheerful tone.
On a raw food diet, our brain becomes cleansed and nourished on a cellular level, our senses sharpen and we begin to see the sun come out in our life once again. Won’t you join me in eating naturally?