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The Good-Mood Diet

No matter what’s got you in the dumps, eating certain foods can actually improve your mood.

Illustration Credit: Ellen Rooney

If you’re feeling: Stressed OutEat: Chicken stir-fry with brown rice When you’re stressed to the max, you may be tempted to self-soothe with food: a bag of chips, mac ‘n’ cheese, a carton of mint chocolate chip ice cream (or all of the above). But overeating won’t turn a bad mood around—it will only make it worse, according to research from Penn State. That may be because eating poorly can make you feel guilty. Instead of reverting to comfort foods, plan your dinner ahead of time and stick to the menu no matter what happens during your day. Your best bet to restore balance: a meal with lean protein, plenty of vegetables, and whole grains. If you’re feeling: GrumpyEat: Watermelon If you’re starting to feel sluggish, mentally or physically, during the day, drink a big glass of water—or chow down on watery foods like cucumbers, watermelon, or soup. Being even mildly dehydrated can cause headaches, fatigue, and problems in focusing, according to a 2012 study from the University of Connecticut. Everyone’s water needs are different, which is why eight glasses of water might not work for you. Ho …

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