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Are Your Food Choices Making You Miserable?

Summary: Nutrition and diet play important roles in maintaining a healthy, balanced mood.
Air Date: 8/21/14
Duration: 10
Host: Mike Smith, MD
Guest Bio: Aimée Shunney, ND
Aimee ShunneyDr. Aimée Shunney has private practices in Santa Cruz and Campbell, California, where she blends conventional medical diagnosis and treatment with the use of natural therapeutics.

Dr. Shunney graduated cum laude from Vanderbilt University with a BA in psychology. After completing her post-graduate pre-med course work, she attended the National College of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, Oregon where she received her Naturopathic Medical Degree in 2001.

Dr. Shunney specializes in women's health, functional endocrinology, and family medicine.

A dynamic educator, radio personality, and writer, Dr. Shunney is on a mission to empower people to take charge of their health with integrative medicine.

Whether speaking to health professionals or laypeople, her engaging style, emphasis on patient-centered care, and passionate belief in the health benefits of joyful eating make her an audience favorite.

She has lectured extensively to medical students and physicians, and she participates in teaching venues throughout the community.

As a Medical Advisor to Nordic Naturals, Dr. Shunney also enjoys extolling the virtues of fish oil to professional, retail, and consumer audiences across the country.
Are Your Food Choices Making You Miserable?
Your body is like a machine; it needs proper food in order to fuel, energize and move itself. If you're eating foods that contain poor nutritional quality, it could be altering your mental, physical and emotional health.

Nutrition and diet also play important roles in maintaining a healthy, balanced mood. Food can influence your feelings by affecting neurotransmitter production, your internal stress response system and how well you sleep.

The "Standard American Diet," also known as SAD, has been known to be high in animal fat and unhealthy saturated fats, and low in fiber, vitamins and minerals. In other words, SAD encompasses all the refined foods, sugar and processed foods located throughout grocery stores and restaurants.

Eating healthy doesn't mean that you can't treat yourself once in a while, but it's important to not make eating unhealthy foods a habit. If you do over-consume these types of foods, you're more likely to feel sluggish, irritable and increase your risk of weight gain, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

What types of foods can help elevate your mood?

Your blood sugar levels play a huge role in elevating your mood. If your blood sugar is too low, you might feel low on energy and irritable. From the time you wake up in the morning to evening, you should be eating foods frequently throughout the day to keep your blood sugar levels on an even keel.

A balance of foods high in protein (plant or animal), fresh vegetables, fruit and whole grains will help accomplish this, and as a result, elevate your mood.

How often should you be eating throughout the day?

When and how much you should be eating varies and works differently from person to person. Some people may need to have snacks mid-morning before having lunch, while others can wait until lunch and then eat small snacks before dinner.

How else can food alter your mood?

Dr. Aimee Shunney joins Dr. Mike to discuss how different foods and diets affect your mood, as well as which foods and dietary habits are best at elevating your mood.
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