We all like our ‘comfort’ foods, especially when we are feeling stressed. You know the kind I mean - fast food, big meals, takeout, fatty foods, sweet foods, and alcohol. Let’s face it – we all find some comfort in a tasty meal and a bottle of beer or glass of wine when we stress out or get upset about something.
There is nothing wrong with that in moderation; however, it’s not a good permanent solution.
When you are turning to what you regard as unhealthy foods you can feel better temporarily, but in the long run, you will feel worse. If your body is not getting the right nutrition, you will feel less energetic, more lethargic, and sometimes unable to concentrate and focus. What does that lead to? YES - even more stress.
If you’ve been feeling more stressed out than usual lately, it’s important to know which foods to choose and which to avoid when it comes to redressing stress and helping you to deal with feelings of anxiety.
With food and nutrition, the best way to stress-less is to have a healthy, balanced diet, which includes each of the different food groups.
Filling up on foods such as whole grains, leafy vegetables, and lean proteins as the basic staples of your diet is the best way to ensure your body gets the optimum amounts of nutrients to fight both physical and mental health problems. When choosing the foods to eat, remember many have a range of magnificent properties that help the body redress stress. Choosing stress-less foods will help to heal and calm your mind permanently, rather than providing a temporary fix.
Some of the best stress-less foods include:
Plan to stress-less
Planning your meals wisely is the key to staying physically fit and healthy, mentally strong, and being able to stress-less. It really helps to know the foods to avoid and the foods that are best to reach for as snacks when you are feeling worried and anxious.
During stress it can be tempting to eat classic ‘comfort foods’ – these are usually foods high in sugar, very starchy, or greasy. However, although these foods can make you feel temporarily better, they will make you feel worse in the long run.
Stress-less snacks include:
When you are dealing with worry or anxiety leading to stress, it is a good idea to make sure you have a selection of stress-less foods in your kitchen. Making sure that your meals include foods such as lean proteins and leafy green vegetables will not only make you feel healthier overall, it will improve your mental health and stress levels, too.
An example of a healthy, stress-less menu:
Breakfast: Oatmeal with berries / fruit smoothie with avocado and berries
Mid-morning snack: Natural yogurt with fruit /handful of pistachio nuts
Lunch: A whole-grain pasta salad filled with plenty of leafy greens
Afternoon snack: Dark chocolate
Dinner: Grass-fed beef with vegetables
Before bed: Chamomile tea
There is a saying – “you are what you eat”.
Make sure you are filling yourself up with foods that are good for your mental health.
Everything in moderation - and balance is the key! Stress-less!
Find out how to Redress Stress in 5 easy steps here....
Srivastava JK, Shankar E, Gupta S. Chamomile: A herbal medicine of the past with bright future. Mol Med Rep. 2010;3(6):895-901. doi:10.3892/mmr.2010.377
Penn State. " Pistachios may lower vascular response to stress in type 2 diabetes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 August 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/08/140805163347.htm>.
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