Fight Stress With These 5 Helpful Foods
Stress. None of us are immune. I know I’ve had my share. And while we all deal with stress on a regular basis, some of us handle with it differently. Me? I’m a stress eater. Times of stress and overwhelm are when I typically make my worst food choices.
But since hitting my 40s, I can’t recover from poor choices like I used to. My weight creeps up quicker and I feel more sluggish when I go off the rails. I jokingly refer to it as “eating my feelings.”
And besides that, stress leads to so many health problems, like diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure. It’s terrible for our bodies but also our thoughts and behavior!
So, I’ve been trying to do better at managing stress and self-care. One way I’m combating stress by incorporating better foods into my days, because what we eat can actually help relieve tension. Some foods can help stabilize blood sugar levels and our emotional response to stress. Here are some foods I’m adding to my diet.
5 Foods You Can Eat to Reduce Stress
I’ve had a lot of changes in past years, but luckily, my blood pressure is still in line. Still, when we’re stressed our blood pressure can become elevated. And I do stress out. So I’m mindful of what can affect my blood pressure.
A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that a diet which includes whole grains such as oats can lower blood pressure. I usually add in a little cinnamon or almond butter for sweetness.
Researchers have found eating blueberries can increase the count of a specific white blood cell that boosts immunity. A healthy immune system can help combat stress. Try adding blueberries to smoothies, cereal or yogurt.
3. Flax Seeds
This superfood is an excellent source of magnesium which may help regulate emotions, counter depression, fight fatigue and reduce irritability. Magnesium can also help fight PMS. Hello! I add flax seeds to smoothies and yogurt.
Cashews are a good source of zinc, which can help alleviate irritability and lack of focus. They are super easy to pack as an on-the-go snack. I try to keep servings ready to go in Ziploc bags and grab them on my way out the door.
5. Dark Chocolate
I saved the best for last. Dark Chocolate! Studies have shown that eating chocolate regularly can reduce stress hormones such as cortisol. That sounds too good to be true, right? Just be sure to get chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa and keep it to a few ounces. I have to try not to get carried away with this one.
So what foods will you start incorporating to beat stress? Share it with us in the comments!