So last week I touched upon how food can impact our mood, can we go so far as to say that it could even impact our behavior?
Those who know me well know how much I like to have things under control. My home has to be organized in a particular way and so does my schedule. I tend to get stressed when days don’t go as planned. So when it comes to food, I would like to think I am also in charge of my own behaviors.😊
However the more I read the more I am discovering that the presence or absence of certain nutrients from the foods we eat can make us more prone to certain actions.
One example I came across was that of a physique competitor or wrestler who are trying to cut weight. If one were to ask if they were nicer 😃 OR meaner 😈 to their friends and family while cutting, 9 out of 10 would say they were meaner. Why? Because eating a chronic low carb diet can cause food-related neurotransmitter changes in their brain. A study showed that the dopamine system in these physique competitors matched that of imprisoned violent offenders.😳
The good news though is that I I have not seen many headlines of physique competitors ending up on death row which is a good indicator that while food may impact our mood it does NOT have to impact our behavior.
However there are several studies in the UK, US and Canada showing that when you don’t eat enough nutrient-rich foods, your body will lack vital vitamins and minerals, often affecting your energy, mood and brain function. One in particular found that by giving school age kids one multi-vitamin tablet and one omega-3 rich fish oil tablet per day reduced the incidence of playground violence by 50%.
Omega-3 fatty acids come into play with their anti-inflammatory properties as well brain development and functioning with deficiencies linked to mental health problems and depression. Good sources can be found in salmon, sardines and mackerel.
The take away for this week is to continue to recognize that what we eat can influence how we feel. Continue to listen to your body’s signals. Keep eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, high quality protein and oily fish. By filling up on these nutrient-rich foods along with that occasional treat should keep you smiling!
Next week I will be discussing: Overeating and Foods that Balance Mood
A. Run a 1600m
B. AMRAP 20min
10 Push Press
200m Farmer Carry
30 KB Swings