9 Foods That Can Increase Your Motivation & Happiness

Cold weather can really impact your motivation – but there’s an fast and easy fix. It’s time to load up on some dopamine-boosting foods. Dopamine is like a happy messenger in our brain. It’s a special chemical that helps us feel good and motivated. Spring is a season of renewal and growth, and what better way to embrace this energy than by nourishing your brain with dopamine-boosting foods? By incorporating these delicious options into your diet, you can use the power of nature and elevate your mood even higher during this beautiful season.

Lean Proteins

Examples: chicken breast, lean beef cuts, lean mince, fish, yoghurt, tofu

A breakfast rich in lean proteins like eggs can be the ultimate motivating kickstart your day. Try to ensure that you are incorporating lean proteins into lunch and dinner as well. These proteins are packed with a special chemical called tyrosine that helps your brain produce dopamine and infuse your day with motivation.

Fatty Fish

Examples: salmon, mackerel, tuna, sardines 

Consider adding fatty fish to your menu. The healthy fats in these fish not only support brain health but also enhance your mood.

Nuts and Seeds

Examples: almonds, walnuts, flaxseeds, cashews, pistachios 

For on-the-go snacks, pack a handful of nuts. Nuts are not only rich in tyrosine (the special chemical we mentioned above that helps make you more motivated and happier) but also provide the sustained energy for the day.

Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

Examples: berries, spinach, kale, orange, lemon, apple, kiwi, broccoli, sweet potato 

Check out your local green grocer for some season produce and load up on colourful fruits and vegetables to help keep your motivation and happiness levels high.

Dark Chocolate 

Whether you’re unwinding after a hike or sharing a treat with friends, opt for dark chocolate with a high cocoa content. The compounds in dark chocolate trigger dopamine release, making it a delicious and mood-boosting spring indulgence.

Refreshing Green Tea

A warm cup of antioxidant-rich green tea is a great way to warm you up as the weather gets colder. Green tea boosts dopamine levels and provides a gentle energy lift, making it the ideal drink for spring.


Examples: quinoa, brown rice, oats, barley, wholewheat pasta, grain bread (the darker and grainer the bread, the better!)

When preparing lunch, like sandwiches or salads, use wholegrain varieties over white. These carbohydrates release energy gradually over the day, ensuring you stay active and motivated. 

Turmeric Spice

Add a dash of turmeric (a spice) to your dishes for an extra mood boost. A certain chemical in turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties and promotes dopamine production.

Stay Hydrated

Examples: water, green tea, chamomile tea, soda water

Remember to stay hydrated with water and herbal teas. Dehydration can sap your energy and mood, so sip on refreshing beverages to keep your spirits high. Aim for at least 8 glasses of water per day.

Live Life Get Active is building a fitter, healthier and happier Australia and we want people to have fun along the way. With the help of Local Government and Corporate Australia we provide FREE health, fitness and nutritional education both online and in the parks, suburbs and cities of Australia.