Friday, October 14, 2011
Go B-A-N-A-N-A-S for Mental Health!
Well, thanks to Gwen Stefani's song "Hollaback Girl" I will forever know how to correctly spell the word banana. This fruit is my favorite of all time, not only because it tastes great, but it is one of the best brain foods. Bananas contain Tryptophan, which is an essential amino acid that converts to Serotonine. Seretonine is what affects our mood, causing us to feel happy (high serotinine) or sad (low serotonine). During my talks about mental health, I constantly refer to the term Serotonine, which serves as the base in helping to send out signals to various parts of the brain. Although Serotonine is developed in the brain the majority of it is stored in our digestive tract. This is just another reason why eating healthy is so important not only for your physical health, but mental health as well. So back to why bananas are rad. The Tryptophan found in bananas is also found in turkey and other protein foods. Tryptophan is associated with that sleepy feeling you get after that big Thanksgiving dinner. I tell ya, share this info at the dinner table this year and your potential in-laws will think you're the smarty pants they were hoping their son/daughter would always find!
Personally, I love bananas and have found them to be beneficial not just to my mental health, but also physical health. In prepping for Miss America and that pesky swimsuit portion of competition, I ate at least five bananas a day. Not only are they good for your mental health, but also help with weight loss and insomnia. Feeling a little puffy? Eat a banana. Had a little too much to drink during that Sunday night football game and your head is pounding? Slice a banana in your cereal. The list goes on and on! So the next time you're having a bad day and need an extra boost, instead of reaching for that can of soda or candy bar- try eating a banana first and see how you feel.
Now, who would have thought a simple fruit would have such great benefits? Maybe a banana a day is what really keeps the doctor away? Hmmmm....now maybe that's something that would make Gwen sing, "This shhhh is bananas...B-A-N-A-N-A-S!
PS- Check out this great link that tells you a little more about how awesome bananas are- Going Bananas