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Happiness is. . . Folate, Fruit, and Parrots

parrotMaybe it’s the rain, or the cold, or the winter light, but at this time of year those Calgon-take-me-away-moments seem nearer.  One of the best for me was a few winters back: at a small restaurant I was helping my twin toddlers and my young son, who was wearing his favorite stuffed green parrot wrapped on his arm, to use the restroom. The room was small.  My son handed me the parrot because – well, you can’t use the restroom with a parrot looking over your shoulder – and was now washing his hands.  The twins were squirming like fish.  As I tried to manage one and then the other in each arm, and then wash their hands while “Hey, stop opening the door” and “Don’t fill the back of your sister’s pants with air from the hand dryer,” I leaned over and, in the slowest of slow motion, with little helpless plastic parrot eyes looking up at me whispering “Why?,” the parrot, my son’s constant pirate companion, slipped from my hands into the depths of Davey Jones’ porcelain commode. There was a muted splash and then a moment of shocked awe.  Kids were frozen in place, one was wrapped in toilet paper, another had washed and dried her hands, but her clothes were soaked. My son just stared in horror.  All three opened their mouths and sucked in air to power the loudest cries of horror that the 10’ x 6’ restroom had ever known.  Trudging home in the rain, parrot finally blown dry but forever changed, kids red faced and still crying as passersby asked if they were alright, I wanted nothing but to be taken away.  I’m sure the kids felt the same way.  Winter and just the complexity of life can often fray our nerves. But whatever triggers stress for you, remember this: get your Folic Acid, it may make you happier.

B9 & Depression: The B vitamins help your body convert food into energy. B9 or Folate (Folic Acid is the synthetic form) is important for proper brain function and research has shown there may be a link between depression and low Folate levels.  The University of Maryland Medical Center says folic acid is key for mental and emotional health. “Some studies show that 15 – 38% of people with depression have low folate levels in their bodies, and those with very low levels tend to be the most depressed. Low levels of folic acid have also been associated with a poor response to antidepressants.” There are a number of foods that are great deliverers of Folate.

Fruits and Veggies: Spinach, broccoli, and peas are great sources of Folate. But most of us cook these foods before we eat them and that can destroy almost half the amount of Folate. Beyond eating green leafies raw, increase your intake of oranges, bananas, grapefruits, and strawberries to get to your RDA of 400 mcg of Folic Acid.

Enjoy and be fruitful! Chris Mittelstaedt chris@fruitguys.com

Check out the section on our site that explains what each fruit is: www.fruitguys.com. Click on the ladybug to see what’s in your mix.

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