It’s easy to not pay attention to your body when there’s so much “more” to pay attention to. Often, we keep fueling the body on so much junk food because we’re either too busy to cook or we just crave junk so much . However, when we’re under so much stress, as much we would normally crave junk which is high in calories and sugar, it’s not a time for junk. As stress depletes a number of vital nutrients, junk food can do nothing about it and soon your body will break down. However healthy food will provide just what you need. For example, taking minerals and vitamins instead will help the body function more optimally. Certain diets could even help fight stress, apart from boosting health and energy. You’ll also get to stop the cycle of unhealthy eating.
Foods That Can Relieve Stress
When we’re stressed, our vitamin B stores are depleted. The vitamins keep the neurotransmitters functioning properly and help to handle the “fight or flight” response.
Nuts help replenish these vitamins. They also contain potassium which helps to reduce the strain of stress on our hearts and lower blood pressure.
Magnesium is important in reducing and fighting stress. According to studies, people who have low levels of magnesium are more likely to have increased levels of C-reactive protein. People with increased levels of CRP have been found to be more stressed and face a greater risk of depression. We all don’t like spinach (except for Popeye the sailor man), however, it is a great source of magnesium as it (magnesium) helps regulate the blood pressure and cortisol levels.
Since the magnesium is often gotten rid of by stress, it’s vital that you pay attention to replenishing your magnesium levels. Other sources of magnesium include beans and brown rice.
Blueberries are one of the richest antioxidant sources. They contain anthocyanin, an antioxidant that has been found to be linked to amazing results like improve cognitive performances. The other berries like strawberries, blackberries and raspberries contain high levels of vitamin C which has been proven to contribute to easing stress. A research carried out in Germany got a hundred and twenty people to do hard math problems and then give a speech. The ones who had been given vitamin C were found to have lower cortisol levels and a reduced blood pressure after the tests. If berries are not available, you could go for other fruits that contain vitamin C too.
Chamomile tea is often recommended as a soothing tea before bed. One study carried out a test on fifty-seven participants with chamomile supplements. The participants suffered from generalized anxiety disorder for about two months. After administering chamomile supplements, it was found that there was a drastic reduction in the anxiety symptoms. According to another study, there is proof that apart from helping soothe and calm the nerves, chamomile tea helps you sleep better. To prepare, simply boil a cup of water and pour over at least two tablespoons of the flowers (dried). Steep for ten minutes before drinking. After that, turn off your phone and anything else and then dive into bed.
Chocolates contain antioxidants that make it one of the healthiest heart foods. It’s also been found to be associated with the mood. According to one study, it was reported that when depressive symptoms increase in people, they eat more chocolate. However, evidence shows that it could actually make you feel better.
Dark chocolate lowers blood pressure and causes you to feel calmer. They contain antioxidants – flavonols and polyphenols. Feel free to snack on a bar or dark chocolate at least once a week taking special care to monitor your weight.
Garlic contains antioxidants that destroy and combat the effects of free radicals which cause harm to the body cells and trigger quick aging. Allicin, a compound found in garlic has been found to be linked to protecting the body against common colds, heart problems and even cancer. As stress weakens the immune system, garlic is important to get the immune system strong again.
Potassium is known to reduce tension in the body and bananas are rich in potassium. They’re also great at soothing the mind because of their tryptophan content. Tryptophan is an amino acid that boosts the production of melatonin (the sleep hormone) and serotonin (the feel good hormone).
Milk and yoghurt
Yoghurt and Milk are high in vitamin B and calcium which are vital for nerve health and bone building. They’re also rich in tryptophan, which helps stabilize moods and calm the mind. This is why people often take a glass of milk before bed.
Fish such as mackerel and tuna contains omega-3 fatty acids which help maintain adrenaline levels so it doesn’t spike beyond control and keep the heart protected from heart disease.
Fish also contains vitamin B, especially the B6 and B12 vitamins which fight stress and help in stimulation of serotonin. Choline is another vitamin contained in the fish which helps to boost Memory.
Turkey and chicken
Beyond the fact that we all love chicken and turkey (except for the weirdos) for their superb taste, we should love it for the amazing benefits it offers. What are these benefits? Of course you probably didn’t know because all you care about is how delicious it is. Well, turkey and chicken are great amino acid sources. They contain tryptophan which helps to calm the mind and boost mental performance. This is why you often feel so relaxed and even sleepy sometimes after a turkey or chicken meal. Generally, we know that turkey and chicken contains protein which is known to stabilize blood sugar levels and thus relieve stress.
Citrus fruits, generally, are well-known for their high Vitamin C content. Stress often depletes the level of vitamin C in the body and since the body is unable to naturally produce this vitamin, you will need to refuel with vitamin C-rich foods or at least supplements. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that combats free radical damage and repairs the body. It also helps strengthen the immune system while efficiently reducing stress.