We all are aware of the dangers associated with stress so avoiding it is important to our total health and well-being. Unfortunately though, it is almost impossible to live totally stress free. In fact a little bit of stress is actually good for us because those adrenaline surges prepare you to protect yourself in a fight or flight situation.
One of the worst things that we will often do when we are stressed is reach for food and not only a lot of it, but also totally the wrong types of food. How many movies have you watched when the ice-cream tub comes out when someone is having a bad day? Whilst this may be a little over dramatized it really is not too far from the truth. We definitely will seek out comfort foods such as ice-cream, chocolate, pizza and chips when the going gets tough, but these unhealthy foods will then often leave us feeling guilty and depressed because we know we’ve sabotaged our health and our weight loss goals.
You will have no doubt read many articles on things that you might be able to implement into your life to help you manage your stress levels but did you also know that there are certain foods that can help you during those moments when you need to calm down?
Here are a few of my favorites:-
Yeah, I hear you all cry …….. me too! Buy the darkest organic chocolate you can find and it will actually boost your mood and leave you feeling vibrant and energized. So that was the good news, the bad is that you cannot just open a bar and finish it in one sitting, sorry! Eat small amounts (about 1.4 ounces) a few times a week and your blood pressure will lower as well as reducing your cortisol and other stress hormones.
Yogurt with Berries
Combining these two together gives you a great meal or snack that will help you deal with stress. The yogurt, make it Greek and low fat, is a great source of protein and calcium, which help your body release mood-boosting neurotransmitters. The addition of blueberries, raspberries and blackberries will give you a huge boost of antioxidants and provide you the sweetness we crave in a stressful situation.
Oatmeal with Cinnamon and Honey
Who doesn’t love a warm bowl of oatmeal for a total comfort food? Prepare it the night before in a mason jar and place in the fridge ready to just warm up in the morning.The complex carbs this tasty breakfast delivers actually triggers your brain to produce feel-good serotonin that provides antioxidants and creates a soothing feeling that helps you overcome stress. Cinnamon has been reported as a great way to ease frustration, and honey boosts immunity while satisfying your sweet tooth.
Green tea contains L-theanine which is an amino acid that can help you deal with pressure in a more calmer manner.
So eat yourself to health, wellness and a stress management.