Suffering from mood swings but cannot think of a valid reason? You may be deficient in certain nutrients. Yes, we all have some days when we feel sad and dejected for no good reason. It may be natural if these are just phases that come once in a blue moon. But if you have mood swings most days of the year, it may be linked to certain nutritional deficiencies. 

It may be an obvious but neglected truth that your nutrition affects your mood. Instead of outside factors, the internal factors may be the problem, which in this case may be nutritional deficiencies. 

Various research studies have demonstrated that certain nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, are essential for optimal health and that mood swings are closely connected to the nutrients you absorb.

Most mental health issues, including sadness and anxiety, are triggered by inflammation in the brain, which causes cells to die. The source of this inflammation is our gut’s lack of key nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, probiotics, omega-3 fatty acids, and zinc, all of which are required for important bodily functions and processes at the most basic cellular level.  Eating a well-balanced diet rich in key nutrients will help keep your brain in peak condition.

Keep reading to learn more about essential nutrients that can point to health conditions like depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, and most importantly to mood swings.


Oxidative stress contributes to anxiety and depression by causing inflammation, which disrupts proper brain function and results in a low mood. Inflammatory diets, particularly those high in sugar and refined carbohydrates, harmful fats, toxins, and stress are all potential causes. Colourful veggies and fruits provide antioxidants.


Zinc insufficiency affects the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex of the brain. Poor digestion, as well as inadequacies in nutrition, are common reasons for deficiency.

Vitamin B6

Several studies have explored the relationship between Vitamin B6 and mood swings, with consistent findings. Vitamin B6 is one of the most important vitamins for mental health. Vitamin B6 insufficiency can result in anxiety, melancholy, irritability, disorientation, exhaustion, and PMS.


Copper boosts brain activity, generating racing thoughts and anxiety. This deficiency can cause neurotransmitter abnormalities, reducing dopamine while raising norepinephrine. This can lead to postpartum depression and other mental health issues. 


Iron deficiency is a common nutrient deficiency among young women, children, and vegetarians. This essential mineral binds with haemoglobin and transports oxygen to your cells. Many observational studies show that when oxygen levels drop, your mood suffers for the worse..


Iodine is a vital nutrient that your body needs for normal thyroid function and the production of thyroid hormones. This means that a lack of iodine may trigger or even be a direct cause of your emotional wellbeing. Studies have indicated that low iodine levels can cause irritability and directly contribute to mood swings.


Magnesium is an important nutrient that works like a natural tranquilliser, calming the nervous system and promoting relaxation. A lack of magnesium in your body can significantly alter your mood and contribute to symptoms of anxiety, depression, and annoying migraine headaches. Current evidence suggests that magnesium supplementation can be good for your brain health and mood, however more research is needed to validate the same.


Omega-3 fatty acids are incredibly important for the body and brain. They are crucial for optimal body and brain function. These essential fatty acids have been linked to a reduced risk of stress, irritability or tiredness. Numerous controlled trials reveal that omega-3 fatty acids may significantly fight mood swings.


Selenium is a trace mineral, which means that the body only needs a small amount of it.  However, it is nutritionally essential for humans as it has vital roles in hormone regulation, DNA synthesis, and protecting our cells from infections and oxidative stress. Inadequate selenium intake is associated with sleep difficulty, depressive symptoms and poorer mood.


A recent study examining the relationship between mood disorders and protein intake discovered that those with low intake had a markedly increased risk of mood swings. Another study discovered that consuming more tryptophan—especially from plant sources—improved mental health.

Closing thoughts 

Although there are many underlying causes for mood swings, nutritional deficiencies can either cause or exacerbate sudden, intense changes in a person’s emotional state. 

Given the correlations between and the consumption of omega-3s, B vitamins, minerals, carbs, and protein, eating a balanced diet can boost your mood and help you stay balanced. You can take a step towards happiness and regulate your mood by paying attention to your nutrition, decreasing the intake of processed foods and increasing intake of nutrient-dense foods. 

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