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Mood Enhancers: Improve Your Mood the Natural Way

Updated on October 30, 2018
pedrn44 profile image

I am a registered nurse currently studying Reiki. I am interested in energy healing, health, and nutrition.

Highs and Lows are a Common Part of Life

We all experience ups and downs. In everyday life we deal with the stress of trying to maintain a balance between work and home while raising children, perhaps caring for elderly parents, maybe planning on retirement, while hoping there will be enough money to do so.

We're either healthy and trying to stay that way or dealing with the high cost of taking care of ongoing health issues. Along the way we're hoping to find time to relax and have a little fun. Highs and lows are a common part of life but there are some easy and natural ways to reduce stress and anxiety, improve your mood and health, relax and get happy!


Improve Your Nutrition

  • Eat foods that are higher in protein and healthy fats. These foods will increase and sustain your energy level
  • Have some turkey! It contains Tryptophan that is converted to Serotonin which is a natural mood elevator. Other sources of Tryptophan include chocolate, bananas, fish, figs, peanuts, cottage cheese, leafy green vegetables and whole grain pasta
  • Supplement your diet with B Vitamins that can be depleted with stress and can cause irritability and depression. Leafy green vegetables are a great source of a of B Vitamins.
  • Supplement your diet with Calcium and combine it with Vitamin D which will help you to absorb it better. Women with fluctuating or depleted levels of Estrogen, which regulates Calcium, and those with PMS can improve their mood swings with supplemental Calcium. Low fat dairy foods such as skim milk and yogurt can boost your level of calcium!
  • Zinc can be depleted with stress and may cause mood swings and agitation. Zinc may help regulate hormones, such as Progesterone, that can be associated with menstrual difficulties and PMS.


Omega 3 Fatty Acids

  • Omega 3 improves heart health
  • It strengthens the immune system
  • It is a major building block for optimal brain chemistry and can improve memory and the ability to concentrate
  • It can reduce the risk of ADHD and depression
  • Good sources of Omega 3 include fish, certain nuts and oils
  • Salmon, Mackeral, Lake Trout and Sardines are especially high in Omega 3 fatty acids.


Get Some Sun!

  • Exposure to sun, in moderation of course, is important for the production of Seratonin and increases your level of Vitamin D.
  • Low levels of Vitamin D have been linked to depressive moods. Supplemental Vitamin D may help alleviate the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder. SAD is suffered in the winter months when exposure to sunlight is decreased.



Improve your sleep

  • Interrupted sleep can lower mood, decrease optimal daytime functioniong, impair thinking and decision making and cause anxiety
  • Try to be consistent with bedtime and waking hours.
  • Sleep 6-8 hours nightly and make sure your room is dark
  • Did you know that low Melatonin levels may cause depression?
  • If you have difficulty falling asleep you can take supplemental Melatonin 30 minutes before you plan on going to sleep. Make sure you are in a darkened room! It will not work if you are reading a book while wating for it to take effect.

Mindfulness meditation uses a focal point. It is focused on breathing, possibly looking at a flame, paying close attention to the present moment and not allowing your mind to wander. During this practice you are asking yourself how you feel about it, is it good for you?

Meditation uses breathing to relax and release tension, it is doing something good for yourself on purpose, allowing yourself to surrender, "letting go".

Meditation

Meditation reduces stress, increases calmness and clarity and can promote happiness. It uses breathing as a focus and may include a Mantra that is repeated over and over again.

I started meditating on a daily basis about six weeks ago and I find it very relaxing. My meditation lasts about 15 minutes. I listen to a calm voice that tells me to deeply inhale a beautiful bright light and release my tension and anxiety when I exhale. As I focus on my breathing and clear my mind I visualize myself climbing onto a magnificent winged creature that takes me to a tranquil place where I am totally at peace. This meditation is called "Get on Your Bird", quite a funny title, and was shared by Colette Baron-Reid during an interview presented by Hay House.

A recent study by the American Heart Association focused on insightful mindfulness, Zen and relaxation found meditation is linked to decreased stress, depression and levels of anxiety, improves sleep and has a positive impact on overall wellbeing.

A year long clinical trial published in the AMA Internal Medicine Journal used two groups of older adults. One group was educated on behaviors for the development of good sleep hygiene that included going to bed at a regular time without having used caffeine or alcohol during the evening hours. The other group was given a 6 week program on mindful meditation with a certified instructor. This group experienced a greater improvement in their quality of sleep and had fewer symptoms of depression and fatigue.

Exercise

  • Exercise increases your levels of Tryptophan and Serotonin, which natuarally elevates your mood.
  • Increase your level of Endorphins, another natural mood elevator, when you exercise vigorously. This release of endorphins - the "runner's high" - can make you feel happy and calm.

Aromatherapy

Another natural approach is Aromatherapy, which is the use of essential oils and other aromatic compounds that can alter a person's mood, mind and cognitive function and improve physical and psychological well being. Certain scents can evoke memories that bring you pleasure and have a calming effect. You can find many uses for a variety of essential oils and recipes to make your own!

You will have fun researching essential oils and how they can benefit you! You should also note precautions and other safety measures to be taken, especially when it comes to direct application on the skin or inhalation.


Always Consult Your Physician

There are many natural ways for one to enhance their emotional well being but it is always prudent to consult your Physician when choosing an alternative method. If you are taking prescribed medication do not stop taking it or try a substitute without consulting your Physician.

Comments

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    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      5 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks, Krystal!! It truly is a stressful time for many of us! I appreciate you stopping by and leaving such a nice comment. I have yet to fix this hub so it can be featured and will start with the helpful tips from Emese:)

    • KrystalD profile image

      Krystal 

      5 years ago from Los Angeles

      This is a very good hub with plenty of useful information. I totally agree about the position we all find our selves in these days. This is a stressful time for many and we have to search for good, natural ways to help is cope before we self-destruct. Thanks for a great read with many helpful tips.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      5 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks so much. I appreciate your time and input and will fix the errors you found:) I wil also look at the content and ads.

    • Emese Fromm profile image

      Emese Fromm 

      5 years ago from The Desert

      The hub is great. I learned a lot from it, and it also reminded me of some things that I already know but tend to forget to follow. I did notice some grammatical/punctuation inconsistencies though. Just try to edit your sentences, (you have a few run-on sentences, and some incomplete ones). Also, go through your lists and make sure that they are all full sentences, with the correct punctuation marks. The list in the "Improve Your Nutrition" section is great (though don' forget punctuation marks), you should follow the same example for the next section (turn "in moderation of course" into a full sentence :). They are all minor issues, I just noticed because you asked (and I used to be an English teacher). Hope it helps. Thanks again for the info, it really helps me. :)

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      5 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks, Emese!! I appreciate your positive feedback. I recently asked in a forum how to improve this hub...do you have any suggestions?

    • Emese Fromm profile image

      Emese Fromm 

      5 years ago from The Desert

      Very informative hub. Thank you for sharing this info.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      8 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks so much for stopping by and voting. I appreciate it:)

    • profile image

      xuzhiqing 

      8 years ago

      I appreciate you taking the time to read this hub. Voted up.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks, myawn. I appreciate you stopping by and leaving a comment:)

    • myawn profile image

      myawn 

      9 years ago from Florida

      Thanks for all of the great suggestions I like natural alternatives.Good Hub!

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks, tammy. I do think it's worthwhile to try alternatives first. There are so many side effects with medication! Thanks so much for your nice comment:)

    • tammyswallow profile image

      Tammy 

      9 years ago from North Carolina

      This is a fabulous find! These alternatives would be benefical to so many of us. These ideas are so much better than any medication. Well done!

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      hello, homestead bound. I do hope you find something helpful here. Natural remedies work best with mild depression. They are worth a try! Thanks for stopping by:)

    • homesteadbound profile image

      Cindy Murdoch 

      9 years ago from Texas

      I have a genetic predisposition to depression. It is hard to find natural things that work. But I plan to apply some of these.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Hi f and thanks for the up vote:) I agree!

    • profile image

      9 years ago

      I'm sure that nutrition, balanced with old fashioned fresh air and exercise, has a lot to do with the general way we feel. Voted up.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      Thanks for stopping by, HikeGuy. So much seems to depend on the foods you consume, Glad you found this useful:) I appreciate you taking the time to read this hub.

    • HikeGuy profile image

      Bryce 

      9 years ago from Northern California Coast

      Good information. My moods improved when I cut out processed foods and sugar. The healthy, whole foods you suggest do make a difference.

    • pedrn44 profile imageAUTHOR

      Sandi 

      9 years ago from Greenfield, Wisconsin

      You're welcome, southern writer. Thanks for the nice compliment:)

    • southernwriter profile image

      southernwriter 

      9 years ago from writer4hire22@yahoo.com is my email address

      Excellent article. Very detailed and informative. Thanks for the information.

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