Angry? It might be something you ate; Research is finding a connection

Greetings!  I’m Nico Trimoff, manager of accessibility services at and after a very enjoyable working vacation, I am happy and delighted to be back.
Today, I have chosen a very interesting article for my posting this week.  Ever wondered about why you become angry?  Ever wondered why is it your mood changes?  Well, do I have ever some reading for you to check out.  Please see below.
I’m Nico Trimoff wishing you a great day.
Angry? It might be something you ate; Research is finding a connection
between your food and your mood, writes Jenn Gearey.
Jenn Gearey 
Ottawa Citizen, Mar. 7, 2009

Imagine that a calm, happy life could be served on a breakfast, lunch or
dinner plate, even in a brown bag. According to some, it can be.
You won’t find it in a fast-food hamburger box or a vending machine. But
more and more research shows there is a correlation between good food and
good mood.
“It’s a fast-food nation, and we don’t always take the time to make the
connection between what we eat and how we feel,” says Kristy Lewis, a
naturopathic doctor at Pure Med Naturopathic Centre in Ottawa.
“We live in a society where people want to take a quick pill, whereas
conscious nutrition is a lot of work.”
Aggression is a behaviour that many food experts say can be altered by diet.
What we eat can even affect our sense of right and wrong.
“Food is not just something that fills our stomach. It’s very active
biologically and chemically, and it affects us,” says Jack Challem,
Montreal-born author of The Food-Mood Solution. “Your body needs vitamins,
protein and other nutrients to make the brain chemicals that help you think
clearly, maintain a good mood and act in socially acceptable ways.”
Still, poor diet doesn’t excuse bad behaviour, Challem says.
“The relationship between food and mood is far more complicated than the
so-called ‘Twinkie defence’ some lawyers have used in criminal trials. That
is, ‘Junk foods made him do it.’ “
Among the foods that cause aggressive behaviour, says Challem, are “junk
fats” or trans fats.
“Sixty per cent of the brain is fat, so if you consume junk fats, you’re
putting a high percentage of junk fats into your brain, and that impedes the
way brain cells communicate with each other.”
While the science of food and mood is still evolving, foods linked to
allergies are also on the list of suspect aggressor foods, says Lewis.
“Casein, which is found in dairy, and gluten in wheat are two culprits.
According to some theories, some people get a toxic effect, creating a
substance in the body that leads to aggression or the inability to control
Manufactured chemicals like aspartame and mono-sodium glutamate can also be
temper igniters, Lewis says. She suggests nixing foods like instant soups
and sauces that contain MSG, plus foods with artificial colouring and
low-cal sweeteners.
Aggressive behaviour can also be related to low blood sugar, so experts
recommend eating more small meals of whole grains, protein and vegetables to
keep levels in balance and avoiding refined carbohydrates such as bread,
fruit juices and pastries that cause levels to yo-yo.
On the sunny side, some foods dissipate aggression.
“There is evidence that omega-3 fats (found in fish oils) … help improve
depression and aggression as well,” says Mona Moorhouse, Clinical dietician
at the Royal Ottawa Hospital. Adding protein, high-fibre vegetables and B
vitamins to your diet are also good mood bets.
Lewis says when diet is altered, improvements in aggression are tangible,
often seen within a week or two.
To assess whether you have food-related aggressive feelings, she recommends
keeping a journal. Jot down what you eat and when, and your patterns of
aggression during your day.
Lewis also recommends supplements such as 5-HTP, which boosts the brain’s
feel-good chemical serotonin, or GABA, which induces relaxation and inhibits
over-stimulating the brain.
If a good diet and supplementation still do nothing for your nefarious
outbursts, you could check with your physician. You might be having trouble
absorbing nutrients. Or perhaps it’s just time to take some anger management
– – –
Foods linked to aggression
Sugar: While carbohydrates initially boost mood by activating serotonin,
you’ll also crash quickly after consuming them, making you feel cranky.
Chocolate: While chock full of antioxidants that decrease bad cholesterol,
the sugar is quickly digested and down goes the high.
Caffeine: While caffeine improves alertness in the short term, the crash
that follows can make you irritable.
Alcohol: Alcohol weakens brain functions that normally restrain impulsive
behaviours such as excessive aggression.
Wheat and milk: The main allergic response to wheat and casein in milk
products is possible brain inflammation, which can cause hostility.
MSG and artificial sweeteners: Their ingredients can heighten reactions,
including aggressive feelings.
Foods that combat aggression
Peanuts, pumpkin seeds, oysters, almonds, artichokes, spinach, turkey, soy,
parmesan cheese, gelatin, chicken, clams, mozzarella, peaches, red peppers,
papaya, corn, sunflower seeds, lentils, shrimp, carrots, turnips, milk,
yogurt, squash, broccoli, oats, avocado, potatoes, bran, banana, kidney
beans, peas, tomato juice, salmon, scallops, beef, halibut, tuna, anchovies,
snapper, walnuts.
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About Donna Jodhan

Donna Jodhan is an award winning blind author, advocate, sight loss coach, blogger, podcast commentator, and accessibility specialist.
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