Emotions and Low-Carb Diets

While the evidence is mostly anecdotal, many people on low-carb diets do report changes in mood and attitude. Commonly cited benefits include increased energy, decreased cravings for sweets, better mental concentration, and improved mood; emotions more even.

There has been some concern that low-carb dieters may be more likely to experience low mood because they aren’t enough carbohydrates to raise tryptophan levels, an amino acid that gets converted into serotonin. Other researchers suggest that dieters with low mood might consider taking specific vitamins that are known to help boost serotonin naturally. Important nutrients like selenium, several B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, pyridoxine, folic acid, biotin, etc.), and vitamin D have been shown to help increase the enzyme supply that converts certain amino acids into serotonin.

Other low-carb dieters recommend drinking a naturally formulated low carb food mixture. Not only will your brain and nervous system get quick anxiety reduction, your body will get complex carbohydrates it can use for long lasting energy. You can also look for additional ways to make sure you are getting tryptophan and serotonin by eating the right low carb foods.

Robert Thayer, professor of psychology at California State University, Long Beach, and author of Calm Energy: How People Use Food and Exercise to Regulate Mood, says the best advice is to closely monitor mood after experimenting with food. “If you don’t have enough energy to function effectively and meet the demands of your day, that’s going to create tension.”

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Atkins Diet
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South Beach Diet
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No White Diet - no white flour, potatoes, white rice
11%
No sugars, high sugar fruit, starchy vegetables
6%
I created my own low carb plan
20%
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