The Mindful Journal


Eat Well To Live Well


Our health and happiness is dependent on many factors, and it is impossible to say both can be derived from any one source. However, it is true to say that the foods we consume play a huge role in both of these concepts.

Studies have shown that foods that are high in vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats are not only great for the health of the body, but also for boosting our happiness, and tackling anxiety and depression.

The way in which foods can improve the mood is connected to how the nutrients within the food impact the brain. There is much research to suggest that an ample presence of zinc, vitamin D, vitamin B12, vitamin B6, magnesium and calcium is essential for maintaining a balanced mindset.

Let’s take a closer look at how these vitamins and minerals help with health and happiness, and discover which foods you can most easily find them in!


If your zinc levels are low then you are putting yourself at a heightened risk of a wide range of adverse health conditions. This essential mineral is present in practically every cell in the body. It is especially useful for helping to preserve the health of the gut. You will likely to be able to determine that your zinc levels are low if you are missing your appetite and experiencing feelings of sadness. You may also become anaemic*.

Foods that contain beneficial amounts of zinc include cashew nuts, walnuts, tofu, tempeh, pinto beans, kidney beans, and lentils.

Vitamin D

Getting out and soaking up some sun is arguably the best way to keep your vitamin D stores high, but your diet has an influence also. This vitamin is important for the health of the immune system and for regulating moods. Vitamin D also interacts with calcium in the body to enhance bone health. Consuming foods that are high in this vitamin is especially important during the winter months when you are less likely to be exposed to an adequate amount of sunlight.

mushrooms healthy eating happiness pama london

Mushrooms, tofu, fortified plant milks and fortified cereals are good choices when you are looking to increase your vitamin D consumption.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 is essential for the existence of healthy red blood cells. When you are not giving your body enough of this key vitamin then you may become more susceptible to feelings depression*.

If you follow a plant-based diet then you are more at risk of a vitamin B12 deficiency. This is because it is naturally found in beneficial amounts in animal products. However, it is possible to take B12 supplements, and also to seek foods that have been fortified with it.

Vitamin B6

This vitamin is required when it comes to producing neurotransmitters – the handy little messengers that connect the brain with the rest of the body. If an adequate amount of B6 is not present in the body then you may begin to feel depressed or even confused!

If you want to up your intake of vitamin B6 then you can opt for chickpeas, watermelon, peanut butter, avocados, hemp seeds and spirulina.


Magnesium has hundreds of responsibilities within the body. A deficiency in this vitamin can cause a whole host of problems – not least of all a low mood! If you aren’t eating enough magnesium rich foods then you may be more prone to feelings of stress and irritability. This is largely because magnesium plays a key role in serotonin production.

bananas healthy eating pama london

There is an abundance of magnesium rich foods to choose from, such as spinach, almonds, bananas, sweet potatoes, beans and legumes.


Calcium is most well known for keeping the bones strong. It is also useful for combatting the symptoms of depression, and a deficiency of calcium can lead to a low mood.

There are several delicious foods that are high in calcium and easy to include in your diet. Try kale, broccoli, artichokes, oranges, figs and sesame seeds to easily increase your calcium intake.

Living Well

Eating well is an amazing way to live well and is a perfect way to demonstrate self-love and kindness to yourself. Increasing your intake of some or all of the aforementioned foods is an easy way to improve your health and to support your own happiness. Click here to discover how exercise can also help!

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Nutrition To Nourish Your Mind


Eating well is an essential part of living a healthy life, and doing so is not only great for your body but your mind also! Just like your body, your brain needs certain vitamins, minerals and more in order to function as efficiently as it can!

Today we are going to take a look at the role nutrition plays in happiness and mental health, as well as how exercise is also an important factor in both of these things!

Nutrition and Mental Health

The role that nutrition plays in mental health has long been under-appreciated. However, there is increasing evidence to support the connection between a healthy diet and better mental balance.

Studies have shown that eating a diet high in vitamins, minerals and other nutrients can help to prevent the onset of certain mental health conditions*. This includes things such as schizophrenia, depression, and Alzheimer’s disease. This is largely due to the abundance of antioxidants present in these foods, which help to combat the damage caused by free radicals.

Evidence shows that those who regularly consume either fresh fruit or fresh vegetables every day are less at risk of struggling with their mental health than those who don’t*. This is due to a combination of things, and can be attributed both to the increased amount of nutrients being consumed, as well as the act of consciously including these foods in the diet.

Healthy eating is a self-care act in itself, and taking the time each day to nourish your mind in this way is a great way to demonstrate kindness and love to yourself.

Hormones and Healthy Eating

The nutrients that we consume through our food directly impact our hormones, which have a huge influence our mood. When our hormones are out of balance we can experience a wide range of feelings, such as sadness, anxiety, or feelings of being overwhelmed. Our appetite will also likely be affected.

Nutrition and Mental Health Happiness PAMA London

There are certain foods that are known to be great for balancing the hormones. For example, cruciferous vegetables are thought to be useful for tackling excess oestrogen in the body, whereas foods that are high in B vitamins can help to tackle feelings of depression that may have occurred due to a hormonal imbalance.

The Good Stuff

In order to eat for optimum health – both physical and mental – it is key that we consume a combination of complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals and amino acids. The importance of hydration should not be overlooked either!

When we talk about ‘the good stuff’ in relation to your diet, we are talking about natural whole foods, whole grain produce, fresh fruit, fresh vegetables – essentially anything that has been grown and not manufactured!

One of the reasons that many healthy foods are great for your mind are that they contain beneficial levels of thiamin. Thiamin, also known as vitamin B1, is known to boost the mood, especially in those who are already experiencing depression.

The Bad Stuff

Research has shown that over the last 60 years the amount of people actually hitting their five a day quota has dropped by more than 30%. As the amount of good stuff being consumed is in decline, unhealthy eating habits will therefore be on the rise!

When we talk about ‘the bad stuff’ in relation to your diet, we are talking about processed and packaged foods, junk foods, foods that are high in sugar, high in calories and high in saturated fat!

Eat Well, Exercise Often

When you eat a diet rich in whole foods and other healthy goodies, then you are giving your body the fuel that it needs to exercise well. As we discussed in our article on Wednesday, feel-good chemicals are released in the brain when we exercise. These feel-good chemicals, known as endorphins, help to balance our mind and enhance our happiness.

So, the best thing that you can do to nourish your mind and fuel your body for optimum health and happiness is to eat well, exercise often and remember to be kind you yourself!

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Namaste Journal



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Follow Your Intentions

The first part of namaste comes from "namaha," a Sanskrit verb that originally meant "to bend." Bending is a sign of submission to authority or showing some respect to some superior entity." Over time, "namaha" went from meaning "to bend" to meaning "salutations" or "greetings." The "te" in namaste means "to you," Deshpande says. So all together, namaste literally means "greetings to you." In the Vedas, namaste mostly occurs as a salutation to a divinity.