There is an increasing body of evidence to suggest that what you eat can have a strong influence on your mood and mental clarity. There are lots of ‘good mood food’ recipes online but the Happy Smoothie is one of our favourites.

This is a great light breakfast or afternoon snack, with raw cacao powder as a tasty ingredient. Cocoa powder is a decent substitute but isn’t thought to have as many health-giving properties. Cacao contains magnesium and other antioxidants, and there has been much interest recently in its potential benefits, including its effect on blood pressure. The yoghurt and pumpkin seeds provide tryptophan and the banana serotonin which explains this smoothie’s name.

If you’d like any more advice or to discuss a personalised nutrition plan, Ian Thomas, the dietitian is on hand at Courtyard.

½ medium banana

½ cup raspberries (frozen is fine)

A handful of fresh spinach leaves washed

2 tablespoons natural yoghurt

½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 dessertspoon raw cacao powder or good quality unsweetened cocoa powder

1 dessertspoon pumpkin seeds

Milk, or dairy-free alternative, to top up

1 dessertspoon maple syrup or honey

to sweeten (optional)


1. Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blitz until smooth.