The power of smells
Close your eyes and imagine that you smell the smell of freshly baked bread or hot chocolate chip cookies. If you experience joy or peace, it is a sign that these foods are triggers for positive emotions: their effect on your brain is immediate.
” The odor receptors are linked to the limbic system of the brain, which is the center of the oldest emotions and memories ,” says Susan Biali, PhD, BC Wellness Expert and author of Your Prescription for Life: 7 Steps to a Healthier, Happier You (Beaufort Books, January 2010). ” Pleasant smells associated with good memories are likely to trigger positive emotions. ”
It is not only because they are associated with positive memories that certain smells reduce the mood but also because they affect the neurochemical balance of the brain, transforming emotions. Therefore, to put you in a good mood, cook the following food groups, whose scents all showed a positive effect on mood.
Latte, tea and vanilla ice cream
If you’re slammed, irritable and without energy, Susan Biali advises taking a latte break. ” Add a few drops of vanilla essence and inhale deeply the scent while you drink ,” she says. It will relax you and allow you to see things in a better light. ”
It has been proven that the smell of vanilla triggers feelings of joy, relaxation, even sensuality, she adds. You can take other vanilla flavored foods, such as tea or this fruit pie, shown here.
Cinnamon and peppermint sticks
The scent of cinnamon and peppermint alleviates fatigue, stimulates the central nervous system and enhances motivation, says Bryan Raudenbush, assistant professor of psychology at Wheeling Jesuit University in West Virginia . A cup of peppermint infusion or hot chocolate sprinkled with cinnamon (or topped with a cinnamon stick or peppermint stick) can improve liveliness and reduce fatigue. To satisfy your hunger and, at the same time, put your sweetheart in a good mood, try this recipe of leg of lamb with mint sauce.
Depression has been associated with low levels of the neurotransmitter neurotransmitter dopamine. However, ginger has the effect of increasing the rate. ” Researchers have proven that ginger can help reduce depression and anxiety, ” says Nathalie Lussier, Toronto’s expert in raw food. ” Cut the fresh sliced rhizome into the bath as it fills up and let yourself be pampered by its relaxing scent that will positively affect your mood. ”
To take advantage of the flavor and aroma of ginger in the kitchen, prepare this cream of carrot with ginger then take a few minutes to enjoy these cookies with nuts.
Lemon and orange
The scent of citrus fruits such as orange, lemon and tangerine, acts on the neurotransmitters of the brain, relieves stress and exerts an antidepressant action. ” The results of studies indicate that clementine is another citrus fruit whose scent makes people happy, stimulates and energizes them, ” says researcher Susan Biali. The scent of lavender and rose also affect the mood, but that of lemon is the most powerful. Inhale deeply the scent of citrus while you prepare the following dishes: Chinese lemon chicken, duck kebabs with honey and orange, and Spanish cake with orange and almond.
Roasted coffee beans
To end your meal in style, have a coffee, whose aroma will comfort you (opt for decaffeinated if caffeine prevents you from sleeping). Researchers have shown that the aroma of roasted coffee beans not only lessens the stress of sleep deprivation in rats, but also acts as an antioxidant. Caffeine has also been shown to protect memory and slow down cognitive decline in women. To change your good old cup of coffee, try a coffee smoothie.