Do you ever feel down with no specific reason? Like, you have a great life, lots of friends, a partner you are madly in love with, but you are still in a sad mood? It might be your diet.
What you eat matters. It is not just a cliché saying like the one we hear all the time: “We are what we eat”. Well, it is similar, but modified to “We feel what we eat”.
The good news is there are natural remedies for depression you can incorporate into your diet. Even better news is pancakes are the best food to brighten your day and I have three scientifically supported reasons to prove it.
The reason I choose pancakes is that first, we all like pancakes and second, they can be easily transformed into a healthy snack. Which means double benefit for you: you get to eat sweet that is also good for you. Let’s not forget how important breakfast is to prevent grumpiness and help you perform. And aren’t pancakes the best breakfast in the whole wide world?
Pancake Recipes Incorporate the Best Anti-Depressive Ingredients
What you need to do first is make some changes in the pancake recipes to make them healthier in general. In this case, ditching white refined sugar is crucial. It does nothing good for our bodies and it can cause big fluctuations in your energy levels that might lead to depression. Replace it with raw honey, pure maple syrup, molasses or stevia.
Another basic ingredient to get rid of is refined flour. I also read somewhere that wheat is not recommended as well because it is a common food allergen that can worsen depression symptoms. You can choose from almond meal, oatmeal, rice flour, coconut flour or soy flour.
Now, what to add to make pancakes the most powerful anti-depressant?
- Antioxidants fight free radicals in our body that are responsible for many bad things happening in our organisms, including bad mood. Foods rich in antioxidants are most colorful fruits and veggies, as well as vegetable oils, nuts and seeds. So, use the best vegetable oil options out there – olive or coconut oil and add a cup of chopped fruit or nuts of your choice (or both) to the batter.
- Complex (good) carbs are linked to serotonin, a brain chemical responsible for mood-boosting. These good carbs can be found in fruits, vegetables, and legumes. Peanuts are legumes, so you can add a cup of peanuts together with a cup of dark chocolate in the batter and create pancakes that are very close in taste to Snickers.
- Proteins clear your mind and increase alertness. Sources of proteins include low-fat cheese, milk, soy products, and yogurt. I already mentioned soy flour as an alternative to refined flour. Milk is also a standard in all pancake recipes, whereas yogurt is commonly added for extra fluffiness and tenderness. You’ve got a perfect base to play with!
- Omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseed meal is one ingredient that is super-rich in these acids and can be added to any pancake recipe.
What about chocolate? We’ll get to it.
You Love Pancakes
If you love what you’re eating it’s going to boost your mood. This is a scientific fact. It must be the reason why pancakes are our favorite comfort food. How can you not love them? Do they not remind you of weekend mornings in your parents’ home? And are they not the usual “remedy” against the blues or a broken heart? I am sure you are not a stranger to eating a whole stack of pancakes when in a bad mood.
My main reason for loving pancakes is chocolate. I have mastered preparing a healthier chocolatey variation that allows me to enjoy chocolate completely guilt-free. I do that by adding unsweetened cocoa powder and dark chocolate chips in the batter. Then I prepare a simple glaze by mixing and melting dark chocolate chunks or chips with some coconut oil.
Dark chocolate has compounds that increase serotonin levels, besides being a great source of antioxidants. And it just tastes so, so good; there is that element of emotional and mental satisfaction because it is comforting. Scientific proof right there!
Pancakes Look Happy
Who doesn’t feel better by simply looking at colorful, happy things, like flowers or butterflies? Or when you come home tired from work and you see your two-year-old dancing to some silly music, dragging you to dance along. You dance along. And laugh. Or seeing beautiful shoes in the shop window.
Pancakes have an ability to transform into greatest things. You can do wonders with the batter: you can create pancake art, pancake muffins, cakes, Oreo and S’more pancakes and what not. They can be transformed into dishes that simply scream “happy” and will make your day instantly. And don’t be afraid, these pancake recipes are so easy to make. Let’s list just a few examples.
- Funfetti pancakes that involve colorful sprinkles inside the batter and on top. You’ll feel like it is your birthday all over again;
- Rainbow pancakes made with different food colorings to add some color to gloomy, rainy mornings;
- Red velvet pancakes, combined with white cream cheese frosting, are perfect for Christmas or any crappy morning in your life.
Grab a fork and dive in, the best is yet to come!