Benefits of happiness
Facing problems with positivity, enjoying the little things more, laughing more and feeling better both physically and emotionally are some of the benefits that happiness brings to our organism. It is undeniable that everyone feels joy in different ways: through a hug with someone special, meeting up with friends again, enjoying a film, listening to our favourite song, travelling or resting on that well-deserved summer holiday we have been waiting a year for…
Serotonin and endorphin, two allies
But happiness is also influenced by serotonin – the happiness hormone – and endorphin – responsible for relieving stress -, two key allies for having a good mood and exuding joy on all four sides. Did you know that we can contribute to the secretion of these substances through our diet? According to research carried out by Binghamton University in New York (USA), what we eat influences our mood and adults who eat fewer carbohydrates and more fruit suffer fewer episodes of depression and anxiety.
Taking care of your diet
It is therefore a good idea to take care of our diet and include fruit and vegetables in our diet, as well as those foods that make us happier. We discover the ideal vegetables to practice the ‘happiness diet’ and give off joy while eating in a healthy and balanced way:
1. Broccoli, cauliflower and spinach
These vegetables are rich in Gamma-Aminobutyric acid (an amino acid produced naturally in the brain that has a positive effect on its functioning), which helps to reduce stress, improve sleep and therefore mood.
2. Arugula and lamb’s lettuce
Both sprouts are high in vitamin C, a type of substance that plays an important role in accelerating the production of serotonin, or the happy hormone. In addition to many other physical benefits, it helps to reduce the level of stress and anxiety, as it regulates cortisol production (excess cortisol causes stress, worsens sleep, lack of concentration…). A lack of this vitamin can also lead to a feeling of tiredness, fatigue and less energy.
3. Spinach and red sap
They contain B vitamins, particularly B6, which facilitates the conversion of amino acids into serotonin. Within this broad group of vitamins, we also find vitamin B9 or also known as folic acid, which helps to create new cells and is involved in the formation of DNA, as well as the regulation of serotonin. This substance can be found in all leafy vegetables.
4. Cilantro, chard and nuts
These foods boost magnesium, a mineral that increases the production of serotonin, which optimises our mood and mental performance. Magnesium has many properties: it helps maintain hormonal balance, enzyme function and the production of neurotransmitters that regulate mood and general health.
Include fresh vegetables
«It is advisable to include fresh vegetables, among other foods, that contain high levels of magnesium or vitamins, for a good mood. Whether in salads or as a side dish, these ingredients not only help us to enjoy tasty and healthy recipes, but also have a positive influence on our mood and help us to live our day-to-day lives with joy», concludes Miren Aierbe, nutritionist.