In the mood for the game

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If you want to lift your spirits you should eat partridge or pheasant, says a new study. These two game birds contain high levels of selenium, which is said to induce good moods and combat depression. The survey was commissioned by the Countryside Alliance, which obviously favours hunting, shooting and fishing, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t true.

Dietary experts say that the UK intake of selenium is about 0.39mg per day, well short of the recommended 0.7mg. The trace element is linked with an improved immune system, as well as with mood improvements. Its main source is from things like Brazil nuts, tuna, and dairy foods. I’m sure I get plenty of it, since I eat all of those. Brazils, my favourite nuts, have such high Selenium levels that the official health recommendation is to go easy on them. It seems that its abundance in the soil is what decides the levels there will be in food.

The same survey shows that game, including venison, is a good source of low fat protein, iron, and vitamin B. It’s also very tasty. Animals that work for a living evading predators tend to develop muscles with good blood supply, and that leads to spicier tastes than those which sit or stand around munching what they are given. This is why game is hung, so bacteria can break down the tough muscle fibres. It tastes sharper and tangier, and it’s good for you. Now there’s a thought to put you in a good mood.

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