Mood Boosting Foods

Happiness starts in the belly.

Sometimes, we just can’t control our moods. Our external environment and hormones often take the reigns in terms of how we feel, and they often do so in ways we can’t always predict. That being said, our diet plays a huge role in our mood, and our diet is one element that we can control naturally. By sticking with foods that are anti-inflammatory and rich in essential nutrients, we can help our bodies stay balanced.

Here are a few mood boosting foods that can help break you out of your funk.


Spinach is an MVP superfood that helps the body in countless ways. The leafy green contains significant amounts of tryptophan in addition to folate. Both these chemicals stimulate serotonin production. Snacking on spinach can definitely help keep you happy.

Sweet Potatoes

All the more reason to order those sweet potato fries you love so much. Low levels of the vitamin B6 have been linked to depression. Sweet potatoes are rich in this vitamin, and incorporating them into your diet can make sure you’re not B6 deficient.


As if I don’t post enough about the benefits of avocado on this site. In addition to being my favorite fruit, avocado is great for mood control. It’s rich in tryptophan, folate, and omega-3 fatty acids. Omega 3’s help combat inflammation in the brain, allowing for mood stabilization.


Lean sources of protein can be especially helpful in battling depression. They give your body a stable source of long-lasting energy that doesn’t spike and plummet blood sugar levels. Additionally, turkey is rich in the chemical tryptophan. Although it might make you a little sleepy, tryptophan stimulates serotonin production in the brain that gives you a sense of overall well-being.


Mmm, berries. The dessert of the fruit aisle. Berries contain polyphenols that combat inflammation. In various studies, high levels of inflammation in the body have been linked to depression, and so berries can be useful in keeping these levels and your mood in check.


Like avocado, walnuts contain a significant amount of omega-3 fatty acids. These omega-3’s support overall brain health and reduce inflammation. Additionally, walnuts are a great source of protein; so they make a great long-lasting source of energy.

Low-Fat Dairy

Low-fat dairy is rich in calcium and vitamin D. When levels of these two nutrients dip below normal, you may begin to feel depressed. Eating foods like Greek yogurt and skim milk can help prevent these deficiencies. Additionally, low-fat dairy contains particular proteins that can increase the sense of overall well-being.

This post was originally written by Taylor Pitz for The Inertia.