Healthy diet and happiness 2 3294

What we eat, it really impacts us with our emotions.

Food, which keeps us alive and it nourishes our body, satisfies our soul and enhances our mood.

For a happy mood, you need Serotonin which is known as happy neurotransmitter. To produce serotonin we need tryptophan, a key amino acid in the creation of serotonin. Lack of serotonin leads us to depression. So it’s the best advice to eat the food that contains high levels of both serotonin and tryptophan.

Carbs produce serotonin, isn’t it complex to understand the carbs?

What are simple carbs and complex carbs?

Simple carb is a source of quick energy which sometimes referred as “empty calories”. Simple carbs such as white bread, table sugar, sugary drinks, cakes, candy, pastries and chocolate bars and fizzy drinks are refined, it means natural minerals, vitamins and fibre contents are removed. It’s a quick energy, your blood sugar is going to go up but remember it’s detrimental to the brain.

Complex carbs are those that take the body longer to break down without causing the major spikes in blood sugar. Sweet potatoes, apples, blueberries, carrots, eggs, green beans, whole grains and corn are richer in fibre, minerals and vitamins and release the energy in the sustainable form.

List of complex carbs:

Legumes: Lentils, black beans, soybeans

Starchy vegetables: Sweet potatoes, plantain, parsnips and green peas.

Green vegetables: Peas, asparagus, broccoli, cucumbers, okra, beans, garlic, onions spinach and zucchini.

Fruits: Pomegranate, apple, banana, citrus fruits, watermelon, blue berries, raspberry and kiwi.

Whole grains: Brown rice, quinoa, air-popped popcorn and whole grain pasta.

Dry fruits: Kiwis, dates, dried apples, bananas raisins, apricots peaches and prunes.

The groundwork for all happiness is good health.
–Leigh Hunt, English poet

Combine the protein foods with a small serving of unrefined carbohydrates (like potatoes, veggies, beans or even fruit) in order to help tryptophan cross the blood-brain barrier, where it can boost serotonin levels.

Why do we need tryptophan?

It has the ability to produce and balance certain hormones naturally. It is an amino acid (like tryptophan, histidine, leucine and lysine, for example) which plays an important role and it has ability to boost serotonin levels. We must get all the essential amino acids through our diets since we can’t create on our own. They’re important for building and repairing muscle tissue, helping with neurotransmitter functions, supplying the brain with enough energy, and balancing blood sugar levels.

It has been found to be very helpful with treating conditions like sleep disorders, learning disabilities like ADHD, migraines and tension headaches, mood disorders like depression and anxiety, binge eating disorder, fatigue, PMS and menopausal symptoms and sexual dysfunctions, fibromyalgia and more. It can also help you maintain a healthy weight.

Lists of tryptophan rich foods:

Dairy products: Milk, yogurt, cottage cheese or raw cheeses

Seeds and Nuts: Sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds, squash seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds, sunflower seeds, pistachios, cashews, walnuts almonds, peanuts and hazelnuts

Soya foods: Dry roasted soybeans, sprouted soybeans, tofu, boiled soybeans

Beans and Lentils: Chickpeas, green peas, white beans, cranberry beans, yellow beans, small white beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, pink navy, black beans and lentils

Grains: Wheat germ, buckwheat, wheat bran, whole grain oats, quinoa and brown rice

Dried Fruits:  Dried apples and dried bananas

Eggs: Whole egg, poached egg, omelette, fried and scrambled and hardboiled egg

Fish: Tuna, salmon, rockfish, trout, snapper, mackerel, haddock and cod

Shellfish: Crab, prawns, spiny lobster, octopus, clam, crayfish, oysters and scallops

Meats: Chicken, Turkey, pasture-raised poultry and grass-fed goat, lamb

Both plant and animal foods provide tryptophan, but in general animal foods are a more concentrated and complete sources of all amino acids/proteins you need. To get enough tryptophan in your diet is to aim for having about 20–30 grams of protein with each meal.

Cook, eat, and share mood-enhancing meals.  It’s a challenge that delivers great rewards for the brain — sharper thinking and happier moments.
– Dr. Laura Pawlak

Eating in moderation establishes healthy habits that can last a lifetime and adherence to healthy diet may lower the risk of Alzheimer disease. So develop a customized strategy that works for us by listening to our body. Get in connections with your body between what you feed and how it feels afterwards. When you listen and start hearing what it needs then there won’t be any issues. Just simply notice, what it feels like after eating.

The joy of eating scrumptious food:

Do you think it’s good for you to choke down foods which you don’t like but you think are good. Choose delicious food every time you eat, there are many varieties of delicious fruits and vegetables. Remember, no foods are forbidden. Eat any food but a small portion; it’s the greatest joy in life to taste mouth watering food. For instance, when you tell a child not to touch any particular thing, they will be obsessed and behind them, it’s a human nature. So permit yourself to eat any food. It doesn’t mean that there shouldn’t be any boundaries. Some people deprive themselves and try to control their food which causes food obsessions. On the other way round they eat too little.

Why eating too little isn’t good for you?

Cholecystokinin is a neurotransmitter whose function is to send signals to stop eating food and give us the feeling of fullness. Eating too little interferes with your brain chemicals and can lead to eating disorder and unbalanced. If you choose a balanced healthy diet, your body will naturally tell you when it has had enough.

Put an end towards your negative thoughts about your eating habit:

Never make yourself feel guilty about the food you eat. If you notice that you have to consider buying clothes in a larger size than usual then you have to exercise a bit more and re-evaluate the food what you have been eating. And, also there is no such thing like a perfect body. Your body won’t work with you, if you hate it, so accept what you have. It is important how you feel rather by the scale the machine tells you.

“When you create a Real Food Life, you’re able to enjoy all the food you eat, secure in the knowledge that it’s nourishing you– mind, body, and soul.” – Janine Whiteson

Remember, good food life leads to the body that is perfect for you and enriches you emotionally.

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4 years ago

Nice article!!! Good info…

4 years ago

health is wealth!

A Magical Trip to Europe – The Eternal City Rome 6 15953

Welcome to the ancient city and Italy's capital – Rome. It is one of the world’s most romantic cities. The beauty of the amazing city will melt your heart and will make you fall in love with the country. Though it can be hot during the peak summer and overcrowded there is so much incredible, ancient history and heritage to be explored.

The Eternal Land of History

It is a city with nearly 3,000 years of history with globally influential art, architecture, awe-inspiring ruins and culture on display. It is a magical place for photography – when you think about the ancient streets, the world famous Colloseum, St Peter’s Basilica, Roman Forum, Trevi fountain, Pantheon, the Spanish Steps and many more.

The country has a long history, as Rome was founded in 753BC. After the Roman Empire broke down in 395AD, there were many separate kingdoms and cities evolved. It has left a powerful mark on Western culture and cuisine including fashion Capital Milan and other major cities Florence, Venice, Naples and Pisa.

The city of seven hills

The city of Rome was built on seven hills (Aventine, Caelian, Capitoline (where city hall is), Esquiline, Palatine (where the big archaeological digs are), Quirinal and Viminal). There are lots of must-sees and several activities to do here giving you a solid senses of its past. No matter how you choose to spend your time here, you will be treated with sensational views, world-class attractions, a history lesson and scrumptious food. It’s always been a synonym for "mouth-melting food," offering an unmistakable explosion of flavors and aromas. Enjoy the amazing Roman pastas and Fettuccine ai Funghi which is our favourite.

Now, Let's dig into 10 phenomenal must visit sights in Rome (aka Caput Mundi - Capital of the world) -

  • The Colosseum
  • Roman Forum
  • Circus Maximus
  • Piazza Venezia & Altare Della Patria
  • St Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums
  • Trevi fountain
  • Piazza di Spagna & Spanish Steps
  • Piazza Navona
  • Stadium Olimpico
  • Bocca della Verità & The Mouth of Truth

The Colosseum

It is the world's 39th most popular tourist attraction with roughly 4 million tourists a year. The construction began in the first century under the rule of the Roman Emperors: Vespasian (69-79 CE), Titus (79-81 CE) and Domitian (81-96 AD). These three Emperors are known as Flavian Dynasty and the amphitheatre was named in Latin for its association with their family name (Flavius). It is the largest amphitheatre and was capable of holding up to 80,000 spectators who came to see a whole range of games:

1] Animal hunts- This was an event of shooting animals with bow and arrows.

2] The Bestiarii – The gladiators fought with wild beasts such as tigers and leopards here. They were trained animal-handlers and killers.

3] Criminal fights - Criminals were also sentenced to fight wild beasts but without any skills, weapons or armour.

4] Velites - Spear Fighters fought each others.

The Roman Forum and the Circus Maximus

From the Colosseum you can walk to the Roman Forum, which is a very short walk. The ticket to the Roman Forum is free if you have the Colloseum ticket but the other way round… Well it’s not exactly true; you cannot visit the Colloseum if you have bought the ticket for the Roman Forum.

The Roman Forum is an impressive sprawl of ruins. In the Middle Ages it was known as the Campo Vaccino ('Cow Field'). At the end of the path, you'll come to Via Sacra and the Tempio di Giulio Cesare. The Roman Forum Mark’s where Julius Caesar was cremated.

You can extend your walk to Circus Maximus which is in very close approximately. This place is an ancient Roman chariot-racing stadium which was built in the Roman times; it was a huge engaging stadium. Lots of people visit the chariot stadium every year. The Circus Maximus is an amazing place to visit and an open air area where you can sit down and have a break.

Altare Della Patria

Italy became one nation only in 1861 and since then includes the islands of Sicily (a must-see beauty) and Sardegna (a jaw-dropping sight). Victor Emmanuel was the first king of Italy. In honour of his name, this wow-inducing monument was built in Piazza Venezia. It is 135 metres wide and is 70 metres high.

There is a little walkway on the road in front of The Emmanuel palace where the view is amazing. Sometimes the soldiers march around in the palace. This palace also holds the tomb of a soldier. It is right near the Roman Forum and the colosseum.


Vatican City is a separate and the smallest country and also has St Peter’s Basilica - the home of the Pope. This major Papal basilica is one of the world's most famous church in the whole, wide world and in Vatican City. It marks where Peter was crucified by Roman Emperor - Augustus Caesar. It is located in Piazza San Pietro.


Castel Sant’Angelo - also known as Mausoleum of Hadrian - is a castle in the Vatican City. It is commissioned by Roman Emperor Hadrian as a mausoleum for him and his family. A secret corridor (Passetto di Borgo) connects Castel Sant'Angelo with the Vatican. It is located near the River Tiber and the castle is currently a museum with turbulent history. The drum was covered with an earthen tumulus topped with a statue of Hadrian driving a quadriga.

Vatican Museums is a well-liked visitor destination with more than 4.2 million tourists per year, making it the world's 37th most visited destination.

Trevi Fountain

The Trevi is the most spectacular fountain in Rome. In the centre of the fountain is a statue of Oceanus, the Greek Sea God, standing under a triumphal arch. His chariot is being pulled by two sea horses, one wild and one docile, representing the opposing moods of the sea. Two Tritons are leading the horses, the older Triton holding a twisted shell to announce their passage.

If you’ve been to Rome you would have probably been to Trevi Fountain and tossed a coin over your shoulder and into the water. The legend of the Trevi fountain says that if you throw a coin into it, you will return to Rome or Italy one day. Trevi fountain is free to visit. Approximately 3,000 Euros are tossed into the fountain every day and an estimated €1.4 million was thrown into the fountain in 2016. However, there are regular attempts to steal coins from the fountain though it is illegal.


A walk from the Spanish Steps to the Pantheon

The Spanish Steps, a great place to sit down and enjoy the atmosphere and views of the Eternal City, consists of 138 steps. At the bottom of the steps you can find a fountain called Fontana Della Barcaccia, or “Fountain of the Old Boat”. The best time to visit is at the evening. On the 20th March, 1986 the very first McDonalds was opened in Italy near the Spanish Steps. Starting at the Spanish Steps you can also visit the Trevi fountain and this walk can be extended to the Pantheon and Piazza Navona.

Stadio Olimpico

As we know that everyone likes football Stadio Olimpico will be a good place to visit as lots of matches take place there. Stadio Olimpico is the largest sports attraction of Rome and is the home stadium of two major football teams which play for serie A – SS Lazio & AS Roma. The stadium boasts roughly 80,000 spectators. It is one of the five European stadiums to host the FIFA World Cup.

The Mouth Of Truth

The Mouth of Truth is a marble mask which stands against the left wall of the portico of the Santa Maria in Cosmedin church. The Bocca Della Varita “The mouth of truth” is simply one of the best sculptures in Rome. It is the face of a man with its mouth, nostrils and eyes wide open. If you put your hand in the Mouth of Truth that is said to bite the hands off of liars.

Other legend was told in the Roman times, it said that the rich wife of a Roman man was accused of committing adultery. The woman didn’t accept that she did it but her husband wanted to put her to the test by making her hand go inside the stone mouth Bocca Della Varita. It is so famous that even Hollywood gave it a place in a film about the city called Roman Holiday. Even now lots of people line up to see this amazing monument.


A Tour

Well, you need to visit the City of Love and other cities in Italy at least once in your life. And stay there to explore the blissful landscape – from the snow-capped mountains of the Alps to the crystal clear waters of the Mediterranean. After the first trip, am pretty sure you would love to visit again as it’s the best travel choice and there are plenty of places to see and things to do. And most importantly famous for its beautiful cars. Alfa Romeo, Bugatti, Ferrari, Maserati, and Lamborghini are known to everyone. And, also it’s a great place to travel by Europe’s fastest train. Italian High Speed FRECCIAROSSA trains travel the length and breadth of Italy, reaching speeds of 400 km/hr, entering into the heart of the major cities and shortening distances.


Enjoy your holidays in Rome and return home with the best souvenir and a memory of your incredible adventure.

Written by
Siddharth & Akilesh
(Junior Authors)

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