B's and Other Things: Food & Your Mood

B's and Other Things: Food & Your Mood

B's and Other Things: Food & Your Mood

Written by Karen Jones, RD Intern

B vitamins are rock stars! They play a vital role in specific physiological functions in the human body. Specifically, they are responsible for breaking down the foods we eat and converting them into energy which the body then uses to make new blood cells, the maintenance of healthy skin cells, brain cells, and other body tissues. But perhaps most importantly, B vitamins help regulate neurotransmitters which are essential for mood regulation. 

While all B vitamins are essential to our health and well-being, for the purpose of our mental health we will pay homage to the B vitamin trio - B6, B9, and B12, which many have hailed as primary in good brain health. These vitamins are critical in the production of serotonin and dopamine neurotransmitters that are responsible for the feelings of happiness and wellness we experience. If the body is deficient in these vitamins, we experience fatigue, mood imbalance, and cognitive impairment. It goes without saying therefore, that a diet rich in foods containing these vitamins will support both our physical as well mental wellness.

Vitamin B6, or pyridoxine, contributes to disease prevention. Acceptable levels of this vitamin is associated with lower risk of some cancers. Pyridoxine also helps many chemical reactions in the body that support immune function and brain health.

B6-rich foods include:

  • Beef liver
  • Tuna
  • Salmon
  • Fortified cereals
  • Chickpeas
  • Poultry
  • Dark leafy greens like spinach and kale
  • Bananas
  • Papayas
  • Orange
  • Cantaloupe

Meals like our Keto Green Curry Salmon, Keto Lemon Chicken with Sauteed Spinach, or the Keto Green Goddess, Lemon Poppy Seed, or LD N4L Chopped salads would certainly fulfill some requirements!

Vitamin B9, or folate, is a crucial vitamin in supporting brain and neurological health, neurotransmitter function, and balanced psychological health.

Foods rich in folate include:

  • Dark green leafy vegetables (turnip greens, spinach, romaine lettuce, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, broccoli)
  • Beans
  • Peanuts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Whole grains
  • Liver
  • Seafood
  • Eggs

Our LD Florentine Scramble, Keto Walnut or Mediterranean Salad, LD Sweet Potato Curry with Chicken, or LD Lemon Chicken  with Spinach & Quinoa, will not only hit the spot, but also help to provide these necessary nutrients!
Vitamin B12, or cobalamin, is essential for the formation of red blood cells and DNA. B12 also supports the structure and function of the nervous system as well as the breakdown of homocysteine. When there is too much homocysteine in the body, this could negatively impact cardiovascular health and lead to dementia.

B12 rich foods include:

  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Liver
  • Eggs

Our Keto Sesame Ginger Salmon, LD Western Scramble, or LD Farmer’s Scramble, tick all the boxes for good nutrition, satiety, and mouth-watering goodness!

Interested in getting these nutrient-dense meals straight to your door? Check out our meal plans here and get those vitamin Bs!