Are Healthy Protein Snacks The Secret to Happiness?
Can the secret to happiness be as simple as a healthy protein snack? Well if we are talking in terms of serotonin then it may just well be! But what is serotonin?
Serotonin and Your Brain Health
Serotonin is a chemical that relays signals in your body, influencing almost every one of the 40 million cells in your brain. It is commonly known as “the happy molecule”, impacting mood, sexual desire, appetite, sleep, memory, learning, and social behavior. Low brain cell production of serotonin is said to trigger depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety, panic and anger. So what can we eat to encourage our brain to create more of this awesome chemical? And can a healthy protein snack be the secret your happiness?
Well, unfortunately, eating specific foods won’t create serotonin cells in your brain. However, all is not lost! When it comes to happy molecules serotonin is not alone. Tryptophan is the forerunner of serotonin and also helps our brains stay happy!
So let’s explore some healthy snacks and food types that have the highest amount of tryptophan and could very well be a helping hand on our road to happiness!
Turmeric is one of the only foods that can cross the blood-brain barrier and increase levels of dopamine and serotonin in your brain. Curcumin, an antioxidant that is found in turmeric, can help minimize the impacts of free radicals in the body to eliminate oxidative stress and help treat depression.
The health benefits of turmeric and curcumin are endless! But how do you find your daily dose of turmeric without ordering a curry? Finding your daily dose of turmeric is going to be a lot easier than you think. Check out these 7 healthy snacks with turmeric you can buy on Amazon!
Now, when thinking 'healthy snacks', chocolate doesn't often spring to mind. However, chocolate, especially dark chocolate isn't as bad for you as you may have first thought! Dark chocolate for example, contains quantities of tryptophan that are used by the brain to enhance the level of serotonin in your body. Eating a small piece of chocolate a couple times a week can help improve memory, thoughts and enhance mood. Healthy snacks like our very own Chocolate Almond Coconut energy bar or our Chocolate Quinoa Coconut energy bar are perfect to get your daily chocolate fix!
Check out Top Snack Ideas for Work for top healthy snack tips for your healthy snack fix!
Amino acids in green tea can relax your mind without inducing drowsiness. High levels of this amino acid can increase the level of dopamine and serotonin in your brain. As relaxation improves, cognitive focus hightens and lowers the risk of depression, anxiety and panic attacks. Check out these awesome organic green teas to help you keep refreshed and happy!
Top Tip: Enjoy a refreshing cup of green tea with our Apple Cinnamon Cranberry energy bar. You will be amazed at how well they work together!
Fermented foods like yogurt, kefir and sauerkraut naturally contain high levels of probiotics that can help balance good and bad bacteria in your body. Bad bacteria in your system can disrupt your intestines and create toxic byproducts that can have negative effects on your brain.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds contain Tryptophan and eating a handful a day can boost serotonin to your brain. There are numerous health benefits to consuming a daily dose of nuts and seeds and incorporating them into your daily healthy snack intake. Doing so could help stave off heart disease, cancer and even respiratory problems. Try to cut back on serotonin inhibitors like artificial sweeteners, sugar, diet soda, alcohol and caffeine and ensure your choice of healthy snacks remain gluten-free.
Last but not least… our old friend Protein!
Although meat is often a key source of protein for many people, there are also many vegetarian and vegan sources that are becoming more and more popular. And the vegan snack world is not short of ideas on how you can snack healthily and ethically!
So is a healthy protein snack the secret to our happiness? Well, they certainly help our brains produce the happy chemicals we need, so sure!If you are looking for a healthy protein-packed snack that you can eat on the go check out our range of raw, pure Nagi bars! HERE!