As a fourth part of our Anti-Stress blogs, let’s take a look at something we all love to do and that is EAT!
Here is a list of top 5 stress reducing foods that you can indulge on to deal with your stress. However, please do be careful as some of us may be allergic to certain food items. Please proceed with caution and always make certain of the foods your are about to partake are organic, non-GMO and will not cause harm to your health.
Green Leafy Vegetables
Dark leafy greens contain high levels of magnesium, a critical mineral for managing stress. Stress depletes your body of magnesium, and this can lead to headaches, anxiety, and restlessness.
According to Time magazine, a 2012 study in the Journal of Affective Disorders showed that elderly people who ate more folate from dark green leafy vegetables had a lower risk of depression than those who ate fewer leafy vegetables. “It can be hard to tell which came first—upbeat thoughts or healthy eating—but the researchers found that healthy eating seemed to predict a positive mood the next day,” the Time article further stated.
You won’t feel the results of eating greens instantaneously, so be sure to keep them in daily rotation to reap the benefits.
Nuts -Almonds and Seeds – Chia and Pumpkin
Nuts such as Almond are rich source of magnesium, Vitamin D, and Vitamin B’s. All of which are excellent nutrients for help us combat stress and nourish our nervous system.
Chia and pumpkin seeds are no exception as it is a good source of magnesium, for managing stress and mitigating depression. Plus they contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which provide anti-inflammatory benefits to the brain. In fact, some doctors and researchers believe the growing epidemic of depression and anxiety in our population has something to do with our diet, including widespread omega-3 deficiency.
We add pumpkin and chia seeds and almond milk to your morning cereal and lunch smoothie.
Bran Breakfast Cereal and Yogurt
Some scientists say that carbohydrates might help you better manage stress. But you need complex carbs, not your typical refined carbs such as donuts and cup cakes.
An organic form of bran breakfast cereal such as oatmeal has abundant source magnesium and other nutrients. According to Authority Nutrition, oats are a whole-grain cereal, known scientifically as Avena sativa. They are mainly grown in North America and Europe. They are a very good source of fiber, especially beta-glucan, and are high in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Whole oats are the only source of a unique group of antioxidants called avenanthramides, believed to have protective effects against heart disease.
Similar to antidepressants, complex carbohydrates might help your brain generate calming serotonin, MIT researchers say.
We’re learning more about how our gut affects our brain. According to Time, “stress can inflame gastrointestinal symptoms.” In 2013, scientists at UCLA found that healthy women who ate the probiotics in yogurt reduced activity in regions of the brain that handle stress.
We add blueberry and other kinds of berries, almond nut and a variety of seeds to our morning White Mountain L. Bulgaricus yogurt. Sounds delicious doesn’t it. It is indeed!
Believe or not, fish like Halibut and Mackeral are among the food source that have rich content of Magnesium per serving. Magnesium is a vital mineral for many of our body systems including but not limited to nervous system (calming effect), muscular functions, cardiovascular activities, and immune system. With the current U.S. adult RDA of magnesium set at 320-420 mg per day, the average American’s intake is only slightly more than half the minimum amount of magnesium required to function effectively. So eat more fish and you may want to consider Magnesium supplementation as well.
“The omega-3 fatty acids in salmon have healthy inflammatory properties that may help counteract the negative effects of stress hormones,” says Lisa Cimperman, a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
A 3-ounce serving of cooked wild salmon might contain 2,000 milligrams of omega-3s, which is twice the daily intake the American Heart Association recommends for people with heart disease.
You must be saying to yourself, now you are talking about a food item that I can easily stick with every day.
In fact, you might be asking why didn’t you mentioned it on top of this blog instead of leaving it for last. Well, for one, I have a weird sense of humor that I like to tease people a bit from time to time. Secondly, I know you won’t be reading the rest of this blog attentively without being tempted to go get that chocolate right away.
There’s no mistaking the feel good rush we feel after biting into a piece of dark chocolate. That’s because it boosts our serotonin levels, which also boosts our mood and makes us feel happier. In addition, studies indicate polyphenols found in cocoa can reduce stress.
Of course, we are talking about dark chocolate that has at least 70% cocoa (85% is even better!) without sugar content. If you find that too bitter, get one with a gentler natural sweetener such as coconut sugar. Better yet, add pure cocoa or cacao powder to your smoothie like we do from time to time.
Additional benefits of dark chocolate has been shown that the antioxidants in cocoa trigger the walls of your blood vessels to relax, lowering blood pressure and improving circulation. And finally, dark chocolate contains unique natural substances that create a sense of euphoria similar to the feeling of being in love!”
OK, now you may go get your chocolate and be happy!
Remember to come back to our site and check out what we have prepared for you in our next blog.