Finding ways to boost your mental health can be difficult. When university is incredibly stressful, I know that when things get tough it can feel like even the smallest thing to boost your mental health can be perceived as too much effort. However, one of the easiest things you can do to boost your mental health whether you’re feeling anxious or depressed for example, is to eat foods which contain natural nutrients and chemicals which can boost your brain chemistry. Similarly, avoiding particular drinks can also help boost your mental health.
Avoiding caffeine and substituting this for a decaf coffee or tea can help reduce anxiety. When I used to drink caffeinated teas frequently, I noticed that I used to get anxious throughout the day due to the ups and downs that come with a caffeine high. Even sugary drinks can have an effect like this. That strawberry and cream Frappuccino that you love to buy in Starbucks contains a lot more sugar than you may think. I absolutely love drinking tea, so I found a great substitute to drink in the evenings called ‘Bedtime Brew’ by Yorkshire Tea. It’s very comforting and makes me feel incredibly relaxed – perfect for if you’re having an evening in after a stressful day at university.
Greens! Cooking up a stir fry is an excellent way to ensure you are eating enough vegetables in the tastiest way possible. I love a vegan stir fry with sugar snaps, baby corn, broccoli, garlic, green beans and green paper in a bowl with spicy noodles. Throw in a vegetable stock cube and some soy sauce in the mix and you’re all good to go. The nutrients inside green vegetables is associated with helping your brain boost a positive attitude.
Fruit is also an excellent way to boost your mental health. Strawberries help your brain produce the chemical serotonin – the happy chemical. Similarly, fruits that are rich in antioxidants are known to reduce anxiety and boost your happiness. Blueberries, kiwis, oranges, and peaches are all examples of these – there are so many kinds of fruits to choose from.