7 Foods to Boost Serotonin for Improving Mental Health and Mood

The Link Between Food and Mood

Food plays a vital role in not only nourishing our bodies but also influencing our mental well-being. Certain foods contain nutrients and compounds that can positively impact our mood and overall mental health. Omega-3 fatty acids in fatty fish, tryptophan in nuts and seeds, and serotonin-boosting compounds in dark chocolate are just a few examples. Additionally, a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can provide the nutrients necessary for a healthy mind. By making mindful food choices, individuals can harness the power of nutrition to support their mental health and elevate their mood.

Serotonin is known to be a neurotransmitter that plays a crucial role in regulating mood and mental health. Boosting serotonin levels through dietary choices can help improve your mood and overall well-being. Here are seven foods that can help increase serotonin production:

Fatty Fish

Think of fish like salmon, mackerel, and trout as your mood-boosting buddies. They’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which are like brain superfood. These healthy fats can help increase serotonin levels, keeping your mood in check. My favourite to add more fish to my diet is in sushi bowls.

Nuts and Seeds

Snacking on almonds, walnuts, flaxseeds, and chia seeds is not only tasty but also great for your mood. They contain tryptophan, an amino acid that’s a serotonin building block. Look for yummy nut energy balls and slices for a perfect pick-me-up during meals.


It’s not just for Thanksgiving! Turkey is a fantastic source of tryptophan. When you eat turkey, your body can turn that tryptophan into serotonin, which helps regulate your mood. Look for turkey breasts during the year at your local store for a delicious mini thanksgiving meal.

Dark Chocolate

Here’s some sweet news: dark chocolate can be a mood lifter. It has compounds that boost serotonin levels in your brain. Makes a quick and perfect dessert after dinner, iust remember to enjoy it in moderation.


Grabbing a banana on the go is an easy way to support your mood. They’re rich in tryptophan and also contain vitamin B6, which is crucial for serotonin production.I love to add 1/2 a banana to my smoothies for a little sweetness.

Leafy Greens

What don’t leafy greens fix? Spinach and kale are like little green mood-boosting machines and easily incorporated into a smoothie snack. They’re loaded with folate, also known as vitamin B9, which plays a role in serotonin regulation.

Complex Carbohydrates

Foods like whole grains (think brown rice, quinoa, and oats) and legumes (like beans and lentils) are your serotonin-supporting carbs. Pair them with a bit of protein, and you’re on your way to a serotonin-friendly meal.

Keep in mind that while these foods can help, they’re not a magic cure for serious mental health issues. A balanced diet, regular exercise, and stress management are all part of the mental health puzzle. If you’re struggling with your mental health, reach out to a healthcare provider or a mental health professional for support. They can help you navigate your journey to better mental well-being.

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