Tired? Bloated? Irritable? It may be what you’re eating. Here are a few “bad mood foods” to avoid if you’re feeling grouchy. 

This first one just kills me. I love potato chips. Old Dutch Rip-L-Chips with a tub of Top the Tater…is there anything better? Well, potato chips are usually fried and soaked in oils that contain a fatty acid called Omega 6. You may hear about Omega 3 fatty acid being good for you and what Omega 6 does is block those good Omega 3’s from doing what they should; which is produce chemicals in your brain that promotes good moods and a healthy brain. My favorite fried potato chip substitute is Pop Chips. They’re not baked and they’re not fried, but man are they tasty.

With Easter around the corner, I don’t like this one either, but ham is not good if it’s cured with added sugars, salts and other preservatives. Those things can lead to bloating, water retention and even migraine headaches. Instead of the Easter ham this year, you could do a pork loin. I just did a five spice dry rubbed pork loin that was out of sight. It was a recipe from the Food Network - with a healthy twist, of course. You use one teaspoon each: garlic powder, coriander, thyme, oregano and sage. Rinse and pat dry your tenderloin. Preheat your oven to 450. Thoroughly mix spices and with dry hands rub mixture all over the roast and make sure you press it into the meat to ensure it penetrates the skin. I left mine tightly wrapped in plastic overnight and then when you go to fix it, heat some Pam Pam Cooking Spray in a skillet big enough to handle the cut. Over medium high heat, sauté one teaspoon of minced garlic and then evenly sear the meat, using tongs to turn it. It takes about 10 minutes total. Then place the tenderloin in a roasting pan and cook uncovered for about 22 to 24 minutes, or until the internal temperature at the thickest part reads 165. Then slice and serve. It has about 200 calories, less than 10 grams of fat and 30 grams of protein.

This one struck me as odd, but the health experts say it’s true: Margarine is bad for you. Margarine is 100 percent artificial and contains those Omega 6 fatty acids and other bad fats that can cause inflammation. Real butter is actually better – just watch it. Land O’ Lakes makes a Fresh Buttery Taste Spread. It tastes the same and my pants fit better.

Bagels are jam packed with refined carbs that are known to spike your blood sugar and can lead to a crash later in the day. I used to have a bagel with jelly or peanut butter, but not anymore. I swapped out my bagel for Slender Rounds. They’re made by Country Hearth and they’re 90 calories. They’re perfect for sandwiches and burgers.

We’ve all heard that in moderation, nuts are pretty good for you. It just depends what kind of nuts you eat. Peanuts – especially the salty cocktail peanuts are loaded with monosodium glutamate (or MSG) which turns off the signals between your stomach and your brain that says “I’m full” and leads to severe over eating. Ever opened a bag of Doritos and thought “I’ll just have a few”. Next thing you know, Modern Family is over, your hands are full of Dorito dust and the bag is empty but you still feel hungry. That’s the MSG talking. Eat walnuts or almonds instead. Walnuts are high in brain boosting Omega 3’s and almonds have high vitamin E content which also leads to good brain health. I have a tendency to eat fast, so when I’m eating almonds or pistachios, I get the ones in the shell and that slows me down considerably.

Happy snacking!