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Cajun Salmon Roast Brussel Sprouts and good mood food

It’s International Happiness Day this coming Thursday 18 March so I thought popping a little reminder of your foods to boost your feel good hormones and relax your nervous system would be good timing!

You can’t do everything with food of course, we all know mental health is such an intricate combination of multiple factors combined and uniquely tailored to what we each individually need. However if things haven’t felt great for you of late, your clarity isn’t firing, sleep is a bit disrupted and you’re aware your positive approach to life has declined then work on things slowly, releasing pressure and build yourself up again how best suits you.

From a food perspective, think about those rich in:

Omega 3 fatty acids to support brain health:

  • nuts and seeds, in particular hemp, flax/linseeds and chia seeds, and the butters for these nuts and seeds too
  • salmon, trout, mackerel – you’ll love the recipe below too!

Tryptophan, an amino acid precursor to serotonin:

Pre / probiotic and fibre rich foods to fuel the gut-brain communication loop (gut-brain axis)

  • kimchi
  • kraut
  • kombucha
  • miso
  • unsweetened yoghurt
  • dandelion tea – lovely replacement for coffee if it’s making you jittery
  • leeks, onions, garlic
  • fibre – all the fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans, legumes and wholegrains!

Magnesium dense foods for nervous system and energy support:

  • dark leafy green vegetables – in particular cooked spinach
  • nuts and seeds – pepitas rock to the top here as well as almonds and cashews
  • raw cacao – delicious in a smoothie with plenty of greens, nuts and seeds – BOOM
  • I love a quality magnesium supplement, preferably a powder that can be dropped into smoothies or water




Serves 1

Gluten free : Dairy free : Grain free : Paleo

180g brussel sprouts, trimmed and sliced

160g fillet salmon

3 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

3 teaspoons cajun spice mix

1 teaspoon sesame seeds

sea salt and black pepper

lemon wedge to serve

Heat oven to 280C and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.

Arrange brussel sprouts and salmon on tray, drizzle with olive oil, season with sea salt, black pepper, and toss with cajun spice mix to coat.

Sprinkle sesame seeds over the salmon, then place in oven to cook for 8-10 minutes. If you prefer salmon well done, leave in for an additional 2-4 minutes.

Serve cajun baked salmon and brussel sprouts with a lemon wedge and leafy green salad.

Jacqueline Alwill

Jacqueline is an Accredited Nutritional Medicine Practitioner specialising in family and early childhood nutrition and gut health. She writes for several media publications, hosts a regular nutrition segment on Channel 7 and in 2016 published her first book, "Seasons to Share" (Murdoch Books). Jacqueline is passionate about working with corporations and brands to support and educate their community and audience and is currently a media spokesperson and ambassador for Remedy Drinks, Eimele Australia, Woolworths, Kitchenaid and Nutrition Director at Bondi Bubs Wholefoods. She is mum to Jet and outside her working hours you'll find her with her family in the surf, on the beach, or out and about in nature.

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