This morning we held another Bright Breakfast, where we addressed the theme “Food & Mood”, a part of our “Energize your brain!” Program. We have shared with our guests knowledge, experiences and good practices to bring us to balance and achieve high levels of productivity, understanding how eating affects mood, interpersonal relationships and performance. Because it all starts and ends in our brain.
We started the day at Siemens' Lisbon Tech Hub in Alfragide with two challenges posed to participants by Bright Concept Partner - Isabel Freire de Andrade:
1) What Mood would you like to store and use when you feel like it?
Participants shared that they would like to use Positive Energy, Feeling of Balance and Peace, Concentration and Focus. In relation to others, they liked to use more Openness, Sharing, Gratitude, Patience and to be True with others.
2) What Mood would you like to break free from?
Anxiety emerged, the desire to have everything perfect, the fear of not going forward, the impulsiveness, the pessimism, the stress, the frustration, the difficult time management and the irritability and intolerance.
If you had been at this breakfast, what would you have answered?
The “Energize Your Brain” Program was then framed to harness the full potential of your brain to increase your energy and emotional alertness as well as your memory and attention skills. In this program we use various tools and work on various ways to achieve the goal of energizing the brain and one of them is food. For this reason we had the presence of Claudia Alves - Agri-Food Engineer with an International Certification in Functional Nutrition, which unveiled some of the relationships between diet, mood and performance.
All participants had the opportunity to taste the various ingredients we prepared, getting to know the foods that stimulate the production of Serotonin, Dopamine, Gaba or Norepinephrine, as modulating neurotransmitters of "Mood".
The correlation between the levels of these neurotransmitters and the states of concentration or memory capacity, as well as the sensation of sleep or alertness, or positivity and joy, was thus established.
We learned that there are about 40,000 kilometers of nerve connections that connect our mind to the body. And that in the intestines - the 2nd brain of the body - is where there are the most nerve connections outside our brain. It is our gut that gives the brain information about what we are ingesting and "gives orders" to generate the neurotransmitters that are important to our mood and action. The intestinal flora is responsible for many of these neurotransmitters and their variety and quality are the major contributors to achieving a balanced mood.
And to make sure our gut is sending the right messages to our brains, we must implement some rules, choosing especially to have a diet that is composed of live, true, whole and organic food.
That is, we should avoid processed, refined and artificial foods by choosing to eat whole foods and as close as possible to their natural state.
Here are some tips for more control over your mood:
- If you want to be social, positive and happy it is important to have enough serotonin, the neurotransmitter that will give you this mood. You will have to stop the flour and sugar but you can eat honey, brown bread, brown rice, brown pasta. Nuts and vegetables in general, beans and oats will also make you happier.
- If you want to be in a motivated, alert, cheerful mood and have pleasure and energy you will need more dopamine and norepinephrine. For this it is necessary to eat fruits such as almonds, apple, avocado, banana and watermelon. You can also eat chicken, dairy, seafood, meat and fish and green vegetables. You can also eat cocoa (not milk chocolate because it has too much sugar, additives and too little cocoa).
- If you want to be relaxed and without anxiety you need to have the right amount of GABA neurotransmitter and the foods that contribute the most are green leafy vegetables like spinach and sprouts. Fruit, the best to soothe are citrus, almonds and walnuts. Eat yogurt and cheese, oats and eggs.
You have the knowledge that allows you to CHOOSE YOUR MOOD BY CHOOSING YOUR FOOD
Team Bright Concept wishes you a very Bright mood!!!