Tag: Happy

5 comfort food to be happy even after the holidays – Italian Cuisine

5 comfort food to be happy even after the holidays

Holidays over? Do not despair, but cook. Prepare these 5 good humor recipes

Do you know what comfort food is? The food that gives comfort, that gives a smile, that makes you feel good, that improves your mood.
A treat for the palate to speak.
It can be comfort food a chocolate cube, a hot soup when it's cold outside, a pizza, an ice cream and even a fruit.
But comfort food is also a dish linked to a moment of life, to a beautiful memory, like a childhood recipe, for example. Remember Proust's madeleines? This is the concept.
Italians generally love homemade comfort foods, those related to home, family recipes, tradition.

All thanks to serotonin

Very often to put of good mood it is not the recipe itself but the raw material. Some foods, in fact, manage to make us smile again more than others.
All thanks to the serotonin, also known as a good mood hormone, a neurotransmitter found mainly in the central nervous system and in the gastro-intestinal tract. In the digestive system it regulates digestion, while in the central nervous system it regulates mood, sleep, appetite, learning and memory.
Good serotonin levels in the blood range from 101 to 283 ng / ml. Serotonin deficiency can cause depression, panic attacks, migraine, hypertension and insomnia.
Our body produces serotonin from tryptophan, a substance that we can take through nutrition. Foods that contain a higher concentration of tryptophan include eggs, milk and dairy products, meat and salmon, algae, soybeans, sesame and sunflower seeds, cocoa, dark chocolate, potatoes, bananas, rice, whole grains, vegetables green leafy, walnuts and almonds.
There are also foods that represent a real source of serotonin. These include cocoa and chocolate, nuts, kiwis, pineapples, cherries, tomatoes, bananas and plums.
Here then 5 quick and tasty ideas (and rich in serotonin!) to be brought to the table to face the end of the holidays with a smile.

Does eating dark chocolate make you happy? – Italian Cuisine

This was stated by a study by the University College of London. Not only: people who, in general, eat more chocolate, regardless of type, have fewer depressive symptoms than others

It will not be the best choice for the line, but when the mood worsens and stress assails us, eating chocolate is a lifeline to hand. Researchers have long used many resources to study the beneficial effects on the body and mind of a few squares, and many studies now confirm that cocoa and chocolate contain different substances capable of act on mood. But now a new research, conducted byUniversity College of London Epidemiology & Health Care, goes further, and states that "people who eat dark chocolate would have one 70% lower probability to report clinically relevant depressive symptoms compared to those who have reported never eating them. "

That's it? The team ofUCL worked in collaboration with scientists from theUniversity of Calgary and ofAlberta Health Services Canada. It is worth pointing out that, as far as we know, this study has not received funding from any chocolate manufacturer: the researchers published their results in the journal Depression & Anxiety.

Scientists controlled a large number of variables, including weight, height, marital status, education, ethnicity, income, levels of education, smoking and other health conditions. They used the data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of the United States and, after excluding underweight people and diabetics, tested a sample of over 13 thousand participants older than 20 years.

They then evaluated depressive symptoms using the Patient Health Questionnaire, which is a standard diagnostic tool for mental health disorders. Overall, 1,332 (11.1%) participants reported eating chocolate and, of these, 148 said they consumed dark chocolate.

In addition to concluding that those who consume dark chocolate are 70% less likely to have depression, the study also found that people who eat more chocolate in general, regardless of type, have less depressive symptoms of the others.

Does eating dark chocolate make you happy?

The researchers, however, ask caution: the study is observational: it cannot be concluded that chocolate relieves depression. The lead author, Sarah Jackson of theUCL, states: "Further research is needed to clarify the causal link: it could be that depression causes people to lose interest in chocolate consumption, or there may be other factors that make people less likely to eat dark chocolate and be depressed . In short, we need more information. Meanwhile, a small square of chocolate remains a small absolute pleasure, and no scientific evidence is needed to prove it.

Skinny Eggnog Cake

Need an easy dessert to bring to a Holiday party?

This cake is easy and delicious. Simply combine a yellow box cake mix with nutmeg, Chobani, water and egg whites and you’ll have a deliciously light cake ready in no time. Top the cake with some whipped topping spiked with rum or rum extract and dessert is ready!

I used Truwhip[1] as a healthier alternative to Cool Whip, which contains no HFCS, hydrogenated oils, transfats
or GMOs. I heard Trader Joe’s also carries a similar whipped topping if you are lucky enough to have one near you. Happy Holidays!!

Skinny Eggnog Cake
Servings: 15 • Size: 1 slice cake w topping • Old Pts: 4 pts • WW Points+: 5 pts
Calories: 188 • Fat: 5 g • Carb: 32 gFiber: <1 g • Protein: 2.5 g • Sugar: 4.3 g
Sodium: 204 mg  


  • 16.5 oz package yellow cake mix
  • 6-oz fat-free Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg, plus more for garnish
  • baking spray

For the Rum Topping:

  • 10 oz  Truwhip[2] or reduced fat whipped topping
  • 1 tbsp rum (or a few drops rum extract)


Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly spray a 9 x 13 inch baking pan with baking spray.

Combine all the cake ingredients in a large mixing bowl and beat until combined. Pour into prepared baking pan and bake about 28-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow to cool before frosting.

For frosting, in a small bowl, whisk whipped topping with rum or rum extract. Spread over cake and dust with more nutmeg. Keep refrigerated if making this ahead OR keep whipped topping in the refrigerator and serve on the side.

Makes 15 servings.


  1. ^ Truwhip (www.truwhip.com)
  2. ^ 10 oz  Truwhip (www.truwhip.com)

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