A healthy lifestyle includes feeling focused, calm, and stable throughout the day. However, very often, stress gets the better of us, further leading to excessive anxiety and depression.
What you eat daily contributes immensely to mental health. Hence, you must include healthy comfort foods in your diet that will calm your mind. They’re not only nutritious but also are great stress busters, promoting well-being.
Here are eight comfort foods to help alleviate stress:
Creamy and delicious, avocados are a rich source of stress-reducing omega-3 fatty acids. These healthy fruits also stress-proof your body with their abundance of Vitamin B, an effective mood booster.
Add thin slices of avocados to sandwiches or salads to experience an entirely new dimension of flavor. How about giving the full-fat, calorie-dense ice cream a miss for an iced avocado treat?
Simply combine avocado, 1 or 2 ripe bananas, vanilla essence, almond-flavored milk, and a low-calorie sugar substitute and freeze sufficiently. Savor the treat as you boost your intake of omega-3s and B vitamins.
2: Dark Chocolate
When eaten in moderation, dark chocolate alleviates stress considerably. Dark chocolate is packed with mood-boosting flavonoids and phenolic acids that help reduce cortisol levels, the stress hormone. Indeed, a piece of dark chocolate can make any bad day better!
Dark chocolate also calms your mind by lowering blood pressure, particularly if you’re suffering from hypertension. Through its positive chemical and emotional impact, dark chocolate feels like pure gratification. So much so that the mere feeling of enjoying it can reduce stress significantly.
3: CBD gummies
Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component derived from the cannabis plant, can reduce stress appreciably. Food products such as CBD gummies can provide focus, vitality, and relaxation.
The gummies make a popular choice among all CBD edibles because their sugary taste camouflages CBD oil’s inherent, grassy flavor. You can eat CBD gummies in several forms, including fruit gums and gummy bears.
It’s advisable to take between a hundred and six hundred milligrams of CBD gummies for treating anxiety disorders. A dosage of 160 mg can work well for insomnia. It’s best to take CBD gummies during mealtime or as a standalone nibble.
Full of Vitamin C and antioxidants, strawberries significantly ease stress by stimulating the production of mood-boosting endorphins. Besides regulating cortisol, Vitamin C also prevents the sudden spike of blood pressure in stressful conditions.
You can relish strawberries whole or make delicious recipes with them. How about picking ripe strawberries on a farm and eating them fresh?
Toss them in salads, or use them as yummy cake toppings. A strawberry-packed smoothie will pep up your mornings, beginning your day with positive energy. For a double dose of antioxidants, enjoy eating dark chocolate-covered strawberries.
5: Chamomile Tea
This naturally caffeine-free herbal tea is a classic stress buster! Chamomile tea emits a gentle apple-like aroma and promises sleep.
So, make sure to sip on this relaxing tea every night as you end your day. Experience the warm feeling as you hold your cup of tea, sitting in a peaceful place, calming your nerves.
Chamomile tea increases serotonin levels, the neurotransmitter associated with well-being, and melatonin, the sleep-regulating hormone.
A study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania shows that participants suffering from generalized anxiety illness showed significant improvement after consuming chamomile supplements such as chamomile tea.
Extremely nutritious and full of B vitamins and omega 3s, nuts greatly lower stress levels. Munch on a handful of almonds, walnuts, cashews, and pistachios to keep your blood pressure in check and calm your mind.
Nuts are also full of magnesium and zinc, which help in anxiety and depression management. Besides snacking on nuts, you can also add them to stir-fries, coarsely chopped.
7: Fatty fish
Fend off stress by adding seafood, particularly fatty fish, to your regular diet. The omega-3s of tuna, salmon, trout, and sardines ease depression as they interact with brain molecules linked to mood. Salmon and sardines consist of Vitamin D, known to relieve depression and improve mood.
You must eat not less than 3.5 oz. of fatty fish a minimum of two times a week. Combine salads with fatty fish, top a Greek yogurt-celery salad with canned tuna. For a delicious summer preparation, try marrying sardines and crispy vegetables.
Whole carbs like oatmeal enable the production of serotonin, thus soothing the mind and relieving stress. Oatmeal is full of fiber, slowing digestion, and stabilizing glucose levels, eventually reducing stress. The high fiber content also helps regulate your blood pressure.
Cook oats during the weekend and refrigerate them. On busy mornings, just microwave them for breakfast, and you’re good to go!
You can have oats with warm milk, dried or fresh fruits, or even with yogurt.
A few other savory preparations worth trying are oats pancake, oatmeal soup, and oatmeal porridge with chicken or vegetables.
Now you know some of the best comfort foods which help alleviate stress. So, the next time you experience stress overload, have these foods to ease it down.