How our food affects our mood

Eating healthy, nutritious food is beneficial to both our mental and physical health. A good diet can help to improve our mood, give us more energy and help us think more clearly. 

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Maintaining a healthy diet also helps to support our immune system. This can be a challenge at this time of year, when we all may indulge in less healthy choices.  However, it’s important to ensure we are getting enough nutrients.

Aim to eat 6-8 portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

Stay hydrated, aim to drink 8 glasses (approx. 250ml) of water each day.

Vegetables and fruit should ideally be whole, so that we also benefit from the fibre in them. Aim to eat as wide a variety of different types of fruit and vegetables as possible.

Reducing our intake of meat can be beneficial both for our health and for the planet - there are lots of healthy nutritious options including beans, lentils and soya products which can easily be swapped into your favourite recipes.

Aiming for wholegrain bread and rice, instead of white, can help to increase our fibre intake.  Wholegrains are also more nutritious and filling.

Boosting immunity with Zinc

Zinc is a mineral that has been found to be essential for immune function as well as its role in repairing body tissues and wound healing.  The cells of our immune system depend on it to function correctly, it helps to keep our skin healthy and reduces inflammation.

​It is found in the highest concentration in oysters and other seafood as well as red meat; but nuts like almonds and cashews; seeds and legumes also contain high amounts of zinc.

Our bodies aren’t able to make their own zinc which is why it is so important that we get enough zinc from our food.As zinc isn’t stored in the body we need to make sure that we get enough from our diets to fulfil our zinc requirements. This can usually be quite easily achieved by eating a balanced diet and including a variety of fruit and vegetables, some protein rich foods like eggs, meat or legumes, wholegrains, nuts and seeds.  Snacking on a small handful of almonds or including some seeds when baking are a good way to increase our intake of this very important nutrient.

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