Emotions and Your Health: Questions & Answers

Apr 14, 2023 Mood 4 MIN

Emotions and Your Health: Questions & Answers

We’ve answered some common questions about your emotions and how they impact your overall health,. Read on for some good tips on supporting your mood and wellbeing:

Q: How do my emotions affect my health?

A: Our mood and physical health are linked. Some studies have suggested that the mind and body consistently influence one another.[1] Poor mood can directly and indirectly influence physical health and vice versa. However, having a good mental state can positively influence your physical well-being. Some factors that influence this connection are positive social interactions and increased physical activity.[2]

Q: What can I do to get into a better mood?

A: One important step you can take is to change your mindset. Positive thinking may seem simplistic, but recent research has suggested a link between a positive mental state and your heart health. Not only was optimism associated with better overall cardiovascular health, but it also led to an increase in restorative health behaviors, such as increased physical activity, quality sleep, limited alcohol consumption, and choosing not to smoke.[3] So what can help encourage optimism? Start by analyzing your thoughts and give yourself credit for anything positive you have experienced. Did you ace that presentation? It was because of your hard work and dedication! By focusing on your actions, it can help reframe your experience and boost your self-esteem. it can help reframe your experience and boost your self-esteem.

Meditation has also been shown to have a positive impact on mood. Studies have shown that a simple form of meditation that focuses on compassion and kindness can impact areas of the brain that are involved in our processing of emotions and empathy. To practice compassion meditation, focus your thoughts on sending compassion to yourself and others, such as loved ones, acquaintances and even those in our lives deemed difficult. Practicing this type of meditation daily may increase positive emotions and social connectedness.[4]

Q: What are some supplements I should try to help me restore a healthy emotional balance?

A: There are some nutritional supplements that may help support a healthy mood.† 

SAM-e, or S-adenosylmethionine, is naturally produced in the body, however, we have lower amounts available as we age. SAM-e may work by allowing brain neurotransmitter levels to increase, positively affecting our mood. Adequate levels of B vitamins may help SAM-e to work effectively as well. SAM-e should not be taken by those taking Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors or MAOI’s, and those with bipolar disorder should not take SAM-e without first consulting with their physician or health care professional.†

Ashwagandha is a supplement that’s become popular recently, but in fact this herb has long been used in Ayurvedic medicine for its ability to help the body adapt to stressors. The roots and leaves of the Ashwagandha plant (Withania somnifera) are cultivated and used in extracts. In supplements, we use concentrated and standardized Ashwagandha extracts since they’ve been clinically studied to reduce stress and occasional anxiousness. By managing your stress, you can help support your overall mood.†

5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) is  an ingredient that is often talked about for mood support. This amino acid is naturally produced by the body and is a precursor in serotonin production. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that supports your mood health and well-being. As a supplement, 5-HTP helps make serotonin to support a positive mood. Please note that the supplements we just mentioned should not be taken together. You should first talk with your healthcare provider about your needs before you start taking a new dietary supplement.†

Q: What other lifestyle changes can I make to help to maintain my mood health?

A: We know exercise is good for our physical health, but did you know that exercising regularly can also help maintain a healthy mood? Numerous studies have looked at exercise and its effect on our mental health, showing that physical activity improves cognitive function, self-esteem, and helps alleviate feelings of isolation.[5] The type of exercise doesn’t seem to matter, what’s important is that you aim for 30 minutes at least three days a week of a moderate intensity activity, such as brisk walking. Before beginning a regular exercise program, you should obtain your physician’s clearance. Increasing your physical activity is a positive way to get yourself on the road to better health.

Increasing social activity may also help to support a healthy mood. Being around loved ones naturally lifts our spirits. This is true at any age, but especially as we get older. Going out with friends and family, joining clubs, and starting a hobby with a group of friends are all great ways to increase social activity. Why not reap double the benefits and start a walking club with friends in your neighborhood? You can socialize while exercising, and both activities help your mood! Also, staying active and social may help keep stress to a minimum and help improve your sense of well-being.

The Bottom Line

Your overall health has an impact on your emotions and vice versa. Some nutritional supplements may help support a healthy mood like SAM-e and 5-HTP, while Ashwagandha supplements may help reduce stress. Increasing positive thinking as well as physical and social activity can also positively impact your mood.†

† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


  1. Lee YS, Jung WM, Jang H, Kim S, Chung SY, Chae Y. The dynamic relationship between emotional and physical states: an observational study of personal health records. Neuropsychiatr Dis Treat. 2017;13:411-419. Published 2017 Feb 9. doi:10.2147/NDT.S120995. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28223814/.
  2. Ohrnberger J, Fichera E, Sutton M. The relationship between physical and mental health: A mediation analysis. Social Science & Medicine. Vol. 195;2017;42-49;ISSN 0277-9536. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2017.11.008.
  3. Boehm JK, Kubzansky LD. The heart's content: the association between positive psychological well-being and cardiovascular health. Psychol Bull. 2012;138(4):655-691. doi:10.1037/a0027448. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22506752/.
  4. Hofmann SG, Grossman P, Hinton DE. Loving-kindness and compassion meditation: potential for psychological interventions. Clin Psychol Rev. 2011;31(7):1126-1132. doi:10.1016/j.cpr.2011.07.003. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3176989/.
  5. Sharma A, Madaan V, Petty FD. Exercise for mental health. Prim Care Companion J Clin Psychiatry. 2006;8(2):106. doi:10.4088/pcc.v08n0208a. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/.


Amy Mills Klipstine

NatureMade Sr. Copywriter

Amy has an MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University in Los Angeles and is a credentialed English teacher, though she left the classroom to write full time. She especially enjoys creating educational content about health, wellness, and nutrition. Her happy place is in the kitchen, and when not writing, you can find her trying out “kid-friendly recipes” and “healthy desserts for chocolate lovers” from her Pinterest board.

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Lynn M. Laboranti, RD

Science and Health Educator

Lynn is a Registered Dietitian (R.D.) and is a member of the Medical and Scientific Communications team at Pharmavite. She has over 20 years of experience in integrative and functional nutrition and has given lectures to health professionals and consumers on nutrition, dietary supplements and related health issues. Lynn frequently conducts employee trainings on various nutrition topics in addition to educating retail partners on vitamins, minerals and supplements. Lynn has previous clinical dietitian expertise in both acute and long-term care, as well as nutrition counseling for weight management, diabetes, and sports nutrition. Lynn earned a bachelor’s of science in Nutrition with a minor in Kinesiology/Exercise Science from The Pennsylvania State University. She earned a M.S. degree in Human Nutrition from Marywood University in Scranton, Pennsylvania. Lynn is an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Sports Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutritionists, Dietitians in Functional Medicine, and holds a certification in Integrative and Functional Nutrition through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

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