Turns out eating well won't just make you feel better in some abstract, "brown rice is healthy so I'll feel virtuous if I eat it" kind of a way. A diet that is specifically designed to reduce inflammation may boost your mood. Recently, inflammation has been implicated in nearly every physical woe, from blemishes to the biggies like heart disease and Alzheimer's. Here at Allure, we've reported on how anti-inflammatories benefit the skin: topical antioxidants, and certain foods and supplements may all reduce acne, signs of aging, and skin cancer. Now Dr. Andrew Weil, health guru and author of the new book, Spontaneous Happiness, argues that eating certain foods won't just make us look better; it could actually keep the blues away. "It looks as if depression is another manifestation of inflammation," says Weil. He outlines a diet that will suppress harmful inflammation throughout your body when you keep reading.
- Switch out coffee for tea, but not the generic stuff. "Drink good quality teas, especially white, green, and oolong," says Weil.
- Cook with spices, turmeric in particular. Try and pair it with black pepper, which helps the body absorb the active component, curcumin, which is an antidepressant.
- Don't shy away from carbs or fat. Weil recommends incorporating both into every meal; but that doesn't mean you should chow down on cookies. Instead, go for whole grains like brown rice, and trade in butter and cream for extra-virgin olive oil, avocados, and nuts.
- Get the majority of your protein from beans, fish, cheese, and yogurt. Animal protein can aggravate allergies and auto-immune disease in particular.
- Supplement your diet with an antioxidant cocktail that includes vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, and carotenoids.