Stress is a normal part of our lives, and there’s simply no getting away from it. The key to coping, however, is being able to manage the stressors effectively, and to do so our bodies mechanisms must be optimized and ready. The foods we eat play a huge role in how our body responds in times of high-stress situations. So being conscientious about what we eat is a great way to begin the process of de-stressing.
Avoid waiting until the stress gets too overwhelming. Be proactive and reach for foods that fight anxiety, rather than comfort foods like potato chips, ice-cream, and soda. Comfort foods are ok, sometimes. However, indulging too much will not alleviate your anxiety, and what’s more, after eating them, you run the risk of feeling more stressed due to the guilt of having had them in the first place.
So if stressing less sounds good to you, try incorporating these 8 stress busting foods into your daily eating menu.
Oatmincreasesases serotonin, a calming hormone that the body produces. Raw oatmeal that must be cooked is the best choice.
This group includes apples, nuts, peanut butter, cheese, milk and more. There is something for everyone in this group, so if you’re a vegan or flesh eater no worries. Tryptophan is an amino acid and has been proven to reduce anxiety in the body.
Here is an awesome source of vitamin B, which the body needs for proper nerve and brain function. As a matter of fact, studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency is linked to anxiety. So, when next you’re feeling a bit anxious, whip up guacamole, enjoy and relax.
It is so very easy to prepare and provides much needed folic acid, which the body utilizes in times of stress to produce a calming effect.
Good, old Water. The body needs water to carry out just about every function. Needless to say, lack of it can adversely affect your happy disposition. Try optimizing your intake by having the recommended 6 – 8 glasses per day.
My favorite fish and one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acid keep the stress hormones cortisol ( “the stress hormone”) and adrenaline ( another ‘stress hormone”) from spiking in times of distress. 3-4 ounces eaten 3 to 4 times per week will do an amazing job at helping the body manage stress.
Another super calming food, spinach is a rich source of magnesium, a mineral that helps to regulate the cortisol levels in the body. Make it fun by trying some in your breakfast or lunch juice blend. Or you can mix it with your eggs for a breakfast omelet.
Oranges are also responsible for reducing cortisol levels and play a role in lowering blood sugar. With its high amount of vitamin C, adding a freshly squeezed orange to your daily meal plan is bound to help you through your stressful day.
Dixie Lincoln- Nichols is a biological science educator, health and wellbeing consultant and Qigong instructor. Her work has been featured in media outlets like, Oprah Mag, SELF, Yahoo and more. She is the founder of Inside Outer Beauty Market, a multi-cultutal retailer curating and creating products to support the body inside and out. Visit the site at www.iobeautymarket.com