You know that lovely feeling of contentment when you hug someone or that surge of nervous energy you get when you’re anxious about a meeting or an event? Those feelings are triggered by neurotransmitters which are little chemical messengers that tell your brain how calm or excited to be.
Some of these neurotransmitters are called “happy hormones” because they help us feel calmer, content, and focused. The constant stresses of our modern society mean that we’re likely to feel the effects of our “fight-or-flight” hormones more often than our calming ones. Fortunately, there are eating and lifestyle habits that support the production of the feel-good hormones and can stabilise your mood.
GABA – the calming neurotransmitter
GABA is my favourite neurotransmitter for its calming effect. It inhibits the speed at which your brain cells communicate with each other. Ever felt your mind racing with a million worries? Then you’ll appreciate how...
There’s no single superfood that can guarantee good brain health nor any magic supplement that will stop cognitive decline. However, there are certain foods that contain nutrients your brain loves and it’s a great idea to include them on a regular basis.
When nutritionists talk about brain food, salmon is usually top of the list and for very good reasons. Salmon is rich in the essential Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). EPA has powerful anti-inflammatory effects, particularly in the brain. DHA is vital for brain cell function, structure and repair and is found in its highest concentrations there. Low levels of DHA in adulthood are linked to reduced cognitive function and a greater risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Include salmon (or other fatty fish like tinned tuna or sardines) 2-3 times a week to reap the benefits. Pan-sear or bake salmon and toss through a nicoise-inspired salad with baby potatoes, green...