Why Do We Eat What We Eat? How Your Food Affects Your Mood


You may have never given thought to how food affects your mood but the cold hard truth is that it does. Have you ever heard the term ‘hangry’? It was recently added to the dictionary; listed as an emotion that someone has when they are feeling hungry, namely, angry.

But, angry isn’t the only emotion that you may experience when you’re hungry. And, you may not even be hungry at all for food to affect your mood. Hence the reason it’s called mood food.

Different types of foods can alter your mood from quite happy to literally depressed. It all depends on your body’s needs and even how and when you feed yourself. Keep reading for a more in-depth look at why you really are what you eat. 

What is Mood Food and How Does it Affect You?

From the plethora of foods that you may find with catering services, to simple, quick, minute-meals, what you eat most certainly affects how you feel and react to situations throughout your day. Think about those sugar spikes you feel when you eat a sweet snack. Or how tired you feel after consuming french fries or baked potatoes.

There’s a reason for this phenomenon. And maintaining a healthy diet is at the start of it all. Here’s what and what not to eat in order to sustain a healthy mood.  

Junk Food 

Food and moods go hand in hand. It’s especially noticeable when you eat junk foods. Try to stay away from refined carbohydrates like sugar as well as refined starches.

It’s also best to limit alcohol. It’s a depressant, not to mention it can disturb your sleep which makes you even crankier. 


The vitamins found in food affect mood, too. Vitamin D most specifically is helpful for a good mood. You can get your daily supplement from low-fat milk, egg yolks, and/or soy milk. You may also step out into the sun for a few minutes each day. 


A protein diet and mood are good for each other. Protein helps the release of dopamine and norepinephrine in your blood, the feel-good hormones. Try adding eggs, poultry, and low-fat Greek yogurt to your diet to improve your mood and energy. 


Fiber not only makes you feel full, but it also slows the absorption of sugar in your bloodstream which increases the release of the other feel-good chemical known as serotonin. Many vegetarians naturally get a lot of fiber from foods like oats, beans, peas, and brussels sprouts. 

Final Thoughts

Food happiness is all about eating the right foods at the right times. That means you should eat at least three times per day, every day. Of course, those meals should be healthy and provide proper nutrition, avoiding refined sugars, carbohydrates, and starches.

You can call it what you want, but mood food is really what you make it. Pay attention to your body and how it reacts to certain foods later in the day. Knowing what to avoid will help you maintain a steady mood.

If you liked this post and you’re looking for more ways to be healthy, check out this post on the best detox practices. Hint: they don’t include fasting.