Nuts are among the best foods you can eat as they contain a lot of essential proteins that the body needs but much less saturated fats than other protein sources. This balance ensures you get what your body needs without much of the bloat associated with it. Nuts are also a great source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help combat feelings of depression and anxiety. Almonds also contain a compound known as phenylalanine, which helps the brain produce dopamine and other neurotransmitters.
Everyone should incorporate more leafy greens into their diets. Foods like kale and spinach are rich in vitamins, minerals, and polyphenols. These greens are also rich in folate, a B vitamin that significantly reduces your body’s levels of homocysteine, a neurotoxin. Greens also contain a lot of magnesium, a mineral that stabilizes the delivery of blood to the brain.
In addition to helping with your mental health, incorporating leafy greens into your diet will also positively affect your eye health and vision. These foods contain lutein and zeaxanthin, nutrients that are critical for preventing proliferative retinopathy, a leading cause of blindness.
You should temper how much dark chocolate you eat since it’s high in sugar and fats, but it also contains flavonoids. Flavonoids are a type of antioxidant that boosts attention, memory, and mood. These antioxidants are also great at fighting the cognitive decline associated with old age. The darker you go with chocolate, the better, as 85 percent or more cocoa is the best for your body and brain.
Eat these foods to help your mental health, and you’ll forever be thankful. Most of these foods are rich in vitamins and minerals and taste great, leaving your body in a good mood. Some nutritious food can feel like a slog to get through, so you can always reward yourself with something indulgent here and there. The problem lies in turning those indulgences into standard parts of your diet, at which point they bring your physical and mental health down.