There are numerous ways to help you deal with stress, and good food is one of them. Sadly, people don’t always reach out for healthy foods when they’re stress-eating. It’s not uncommon to grab unhealthy and fatty foods like burgers and fries for comfort. This is counter-productive in the end as it harms your body by making you pile unnecessary weight.
The truth is that high-stress levels make the body crave some nutrients like Vitamin B and C, magnesium, and selenium. The amount and quality of nutrients you consume over time will impact your emotions, mood, and motivation.
That said, you should avoid unhealthy eating patterns when stressed. Instead, reach out for the following healthy stress-relieving foods whenever you feel stress weighing you down.
Herbal Tea for Warmth and Calmness
Sometimes it’s not about the nutrients but the feeling that food or beverages induce. A warm cup of herbal tea is effective in helping you feel better about the stressing factor. Sipping a warm beverage promotes feelings of friendliness and warmth and produces a soothing effect. When enhanced with certain herbs like chamomile, mint, passionflower, valerian root, and lavender, they create a more relaxing effect.
Whole Grains to Boost Your Mood
Carbohydrates can temporarily raise the levels of serotonin. This is a hormone that reduces stress and boosts your mood. Once the hormone levels increase, your stress levels decrease, and you can concentrate better on the task at hand.
The only catch when eating carbohydrates to reduce stress is to choose healthy ones. These include whole grains, sweet potatoes, and unrefined carbohydrates for better nutrition. Remember that eating healthy not only reduces stress but is also part of your integrative approach to health.
Salmon, sardines, mackerel, herring, and trout are fatty fish rich in omega-3. This fatty acid promotes cognitive function and also promotes good mental health. The intake of omega-3 also helps to balance out the intake of omega-6.
Large quantities of omega-6 in the body can increase the risk of mood disorders like stress and anxiety. Current recommendations hold that you should have at least two servings of fatty fish per week. Salmon and sardines also contain vitamin D.
You may ask how chocolate is a healthy food, but dark chocolate is healthy. It not only excites your taste buds but also relieves stress at the molecular level and emotionally.
Dark chocolate has many antioxidants, which lower the level of stress hormones in the body. Don’t settle for any dark chocolate that comes your way but go for high-quality dark chocolate made from high-quality ingredients.
You also want to be sure that it’s made under hygienic conditions. It would help if the chocolate has no hidden additives or chemicals. The main ingredients should be cocoa butter, cane sugar, and cacao beans. When you find the perfect bar of black chocolate, remember to indulge in moderation.
If you always reach out to unhealthy foods when stressed, it’s time to kick the habit. Instead, go for healthy stress-reducing foods that don’t compound the problem. They’ll do more good to your overall health and help you deal with other issues you may not even know exist.