Tuesday, September 27, 2022

What To Eat To Reduce Stress

Fill Up On The Right Kinds Of Foods

How to Eat to Lower Stress & Cortisol!!

That means raw veggies.

“Mostly for the stress relief that comes from chewing them, eating raw vegetables can help release clenched jaw and decrease cortisol levels as well,” says Dr. San Miguel. “Veggies are very low in calories and are filled with essential nutrients and dietary fiber.”

You’ll also want to be sure you fill up on foods that increase serotonin. This includes eggs, cheese, pineapple, tofu, salmon, turkey, nuts,and seeds, according to Dr. San Miguel.

How Can I Kill Anxiety Naturally

While anxiety is often caused;or triggered by certain events like a;bad;day at work, uncertainty in life, or;financial worries, it can be caused or made worse;by your diet and lifestyle. If you feel anxious often but can’t seem to pinpoint the reason, it’s possible it could be caused or compounded by;what you are eating and drinking. Thankfully, there are ways you can kill anxiety naturally and live a happier,;less stressful life.

One of the best ways to cure anxiety;naturally;is by improving your diet. Biologically, anxiety can be caused by imbalances in the brain and central nervous system. Serotonin is a;neurotransmitter;associated with mood, appetite, and sleep. If this;chemical;is imbalanced, it could lead to anxiety and higher levels of stress, which in turn will lead to mood swings, insomnia, and possibly weight gain due to increased appetite or stress eating. In order to re-balance;serotonin;and reduce your anxiety naturally, your first step should be looking at what you eat and drink.

Citrus Fruits And Strawberries Contain Vitamin C Which Help Fight Stress

Some studies have found that high levels of vitamin C may help ease stress levels. One double-blind;study, published January 2015 in the Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences, reported that vitamin C reduced stress levels in participants taking 500 mg per day, and also pointed to possible anxiety prevention. Another;study, published in November 2013 in the Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences, looked at vitamin C and vitamin E and found a significant decrease in anxiety levels in the vitamin C group compared with other groups. Eating fruits like oranges, grapefruits, and strawberries is a good place to start.

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Swiss Chard For Even More Magnesium

Ooh hey, chalk another one up for magnesium. Swiss chard is another leafy green packed with the mineral thats likely to help give you a dose of relaxation.

One study showed that low levels of magnesium were associated with anxiety and panic attacks. So, stocking up on those leafy greens cant hurt for a lot of reasons, chilling out included.

Cant tell one veg from the next? Heres a primer on how to spot the right leafy greens.

Sweet Potatoes And Other Complex Carbs

10 POWERFUL FOODS THAT REDUCE STRESS

Sweet potatoes and other nutrient-dense carb sources can affect levels of cortisol, a hormone that affects all kinds of things in our body, including the stress response.

Our body regulates cortisol in general, but one study showed that carbohydrates seem to help lower them, and might be lowering our stress levels with it.

I knew carbs make us happy , but there may be real science behind it, too.

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Healthy Eating To Reduce Stresshealthy Facts

The concept behind eating healthy foods is to eliminate the symptoms of stress.

Four basic precautions are to limit the use of caffeine which is found in coffee, tea, sodas, and chocolate. High caffeine causes people to be more stressful and health practitioners recommend a gradual reduction in caffeine-containing foods. Using decaffeinated coffee and chocolates is a good alternative.;

The second precaution is to reduce the comforting numbness of alcohol in a stressful situation. If you must drink at all, limit alcohol intake to 2 drinks a day for men and 1 for women.

Mealtimes should be relaxed. It is better to avoid meals while running or while rushing to an activity. Mealtimes should be together with the family in a calm and relaxed atmosphere where every spoonful is savored and relished in peace. This act is in itself a stress-relieving experience.;

The food itself can lead to stress. There is a tendency to overeat during stressful situations and this can lead to obesity and related health issues such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.

The challenge is to eat healthily and beat the craving for sugar-rich junk food whenever we are in a stressful situation. Stressful situations can be as light as being Caught in a traffic snarl to simply boredom to major stressful situations as a job loss or the loss of a loved one.

In todays scenario, there is no hunt or fight and the unutilized energy is simply converted to fat.;

Dinner Recipes To Eat After A Particularly Stressful Day

You overslept and sprinted to work . Luckily, you arrived at your 9 a.m. meeting just in time to have your to-do list loaded up by your boss. After battling a last-minute deadline and playing mediator for a disagreement between your siblings via text message, you manage to make it to the gym before finally heading home.

To say youre ready to dive headfirst into a bag of potato chips is an understatement.

But while your taste buds may tell you to enjoy a stress-fueled indulgence, these foods arent going to do anything for the symptoms that youre attempting to soothe. You know: a crappy mood, low energy and unhealthy food cravings.

The effects of chronic stress is mediated through the hormone cortisol, says Dr. Barry Sears, leading authority on the dietary control of hormonal response, author and president of the non-profit, Inflammation Research Foundation. Excess cortisol has adverse effects on anxiety and depression, as well as depressing the immune response. can also cause damage in the hippocampus thus affecting memory. Cortisol increases insulin resistance, which has a negative effect on blood pressure. Insulin resistance also affects appetite by creating hyperinsulinemia that leads to low blood glucoseand increases deposition of excess fat in the adipose tissue causing weight gain.

You probably didnt realize that your stressful day was having such a drastic effect on your body. But what does this have to do with what you eat for dinner?

Also Check: How To Cope With Anxiety Stress And Depression

Can You Use Your Diet To Help Fight Stress

Food and stress have a complex relationship. Not only can what you eat impact your stress levels, but being stressed can increase your need for certain vitamins and minerals, according to a 2016 review in the Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences. So eating right may help improve your stress-related symptoms. Nutrients, including complex carbohydrates, proteins, vitamin C, vitamin B, magnesium, and selenium, actually seem to reduce levels of the stress hormone cortisol, according to the 2016 review. So youll want to consider adding these nutrient-filled foods to your grocery cart for extra stress relief .

Certain Foods Contain Nutrients That Can Help Fend Off Stress

How to Eat to Reduce Stress

There are many ways to manage and even reduce stress levels when youre feeling tense. Food can be one of your biggest allies or enemies. It can make your stress levels go down or up, so its critical to pay attention to what youre eating when youre feeling frazzled. Not to mention, just being stressed can increase your need for certain nutrients, such as vitamin C, vitamin B, selenium, and magnesium, noted a;review published in June 2016 in the Journal of Nutrition & Food Sciences.

An;article published in August 2015 in the journal Stress suggested that the amount and quality of nutrients you take in over time can impact the bodys neural circuits that control emotion, motivation, and mood. Other research, such as a;study published in October 2017 in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine: Journal of Behavioral Medicine, has pointed to gut microbiota microorganisms in the intestine comprised of good and bad bacteria as an essential link to the relationship between what you eat and drink, and how you feel.

Microbiome health, or gut health, affects your mood, emotions, and psychological health, says Alice Figueroa, RDN, MPH, a nutritionist in New York City and founder of Alice in Foodieland.

Fighting stress with food is a tactic available to everyone, Figueroa says. No expensive supplements or complex methodology is required.

Stress Eating Can Ruin Your Weight Loss Goals The Key Is To Find Ways To Relieve Stress Without Overeating

There is much truth behind the phrase “stress eating.” Stress, the hormones it unleashes, and the effects of high-fat, sugary “comfort foods” push people toward overeating. Researchers have linked weight gain to stress, and according to an American Psychological Association survey, about one-fourth of Americans rate their stress level as 8 or more on a 10-point scale.

In the short term, stress can shut down appetite.;The nervous system sends messages to the adrenal glands atop the kidneys to pump out the hormone epinephrine . Epinephrine helps trigger the body’s fight-or-flight response, a revved-up physiological state that temporarily puts eating on hold.

But if stress persists, it’s a different story. The adrenal glands release another hormone called cortisol, and cortisol increases appetite and may also ramp up motivation in general, including the motivation to eat. Once a stressful episode is over, cortisol levels should fall, but if the stress doesn’t go away or if a person’s stress response gets stuck in the “on” position cortisol may stay elevated.

The Basics Of Cortisol

Cortisol is supposed to help us prepare for a stressful event by giving us more available energy. It does this by shutting down other bodily processes that arent needed for immediate survival.

The way cortisol gives us more energy is by raising our blood sugar levels. One of the ways it does this is by breaking down your muscle tissue into amino acids that can be converted into blood sugar. This means over time chronically high levels of cortisol will decrease your muscle. This is why cortisol is known as a catabolic hormone. The less muscle you have the lower your metabolism and the higher chance that you will gain fat.

When your body has this extra glucose in the blood it is supposed to be for immediate energy and not to be stored so the cortisol will stop the production of insulin. Insulin lowers blood sugar levels by storing the extra glucose in your muscles and fat.

Type 1 diabetes is when the body does not produce insulin to lower blood sugar. Sound similar to what happens with constantly high cortisol levels?

If you are running away from a saber tooth tiger then its good to have extra glucose in your blood that your body can convert to energy. After you escape, the cortisol levels go down and the body returns to status quo.

Satisfy Craving With Healthy Snack

Satisfying my cravings with something healthy is my last resort strategy. I usually dont crave anything in particular, so I typically go for veggies, protein shakes, almonds, or fruit to scratch that itch.

If youre craving something sweet, try eating some fruit. If you have a taste for something crunchy, perhaps carrots dipped in hummus will do the trick if youre longing for a salty snack, veggie chips to the rescue.

No matter what youre craving, there is a healthy option out there to fill that void. It may take some time to find the right thing to replace your go-to snacks, but you will find something if you have an open mind.

Spinach Salad For A Stress

10 POWERFUL FOODS THAT REDUCE STRESS

Popeye was onto something. This leafy green may be good for reducing anxiety. Spinach is high in magnesium and B vitamins, two contenders in the fight against stress.

A research review showed that people who are prone to anxiety may see benefits from healthy levels of the mineral, though more research is needed to know for sure. One study found that magnesium is especially potent when combined with vitamin B6.

Bonus: Eating a hearty helping of spinach salad at lunch will give you an energy boost, thanks to those B vitamins.

Try: a spinach salad with plenty of your favorite veggies, topped with almonds or pumpkin seeds two other great sources of magnesium.

Eating Healthy Should Still Be Delicious

While there are many stressors outside of our control, there are ways that we can control our reaction to stress. Our eating habits, including the foods we eat, have a major impact on stress, how we deal with it, and how we recover from it.

To get more insight on stress and the role that food plays in dealing with it, I spoke with Dr. Howard Maziar, a board-certified psychiatrist in Atlanta, Georgia. We’ll take a closer look at his recommendations and provide additional insight on foods to include to reduce stress.

Brazil Nuts For A Dash Of Selenium

When eating for health generally, adding in nuts and seeds is a great practice. Brazil nuts in particular are a great source of selenium, which, when lacking, is related to anxiety, depression, and fatigue.

More research is needed to understand the link, but adding a few to your lunch salad or trail mix cant hurt.

Does Food Affect Anxiety

Food can definitely affect anxiety, both positively and negatively. A bad diet full of sugar, caffeine, and junk food could lead to higher levels of anxiety. While a good, healthy, balanced diet rich in whole foods and vegetables could really improve your mental health and help to reduce your anxiety naturally. Of course, if there is a particular reason you are feeling anxious, this needs to be addressed first, but a healthy diet can help if you are not sure what is causing your anxiety.

Other Ways To Reduce Stress

Stress Relief | How To Relieve Stress | How To Reduce Stress
  • Meditation is a great way to calm your mind, plus its free and you can do it anywhere, anytime.

  • Yoga;may help with;practicing;mindfulness not;only is it a great form of exercise but it incorporates meditation to slow down and calm the body and mind.

  • Get outside for fresh air and to connect with nature.

  • Good quality sleepis of utmost importance for long term health and regeneration. Few people can function properly with less than seven;or eight;hours of sleep per night.

  • Regular, gentle exercise is very beneficial for relieving stress and decreasing negative emotions such as worry or anxiety. However, for people with significantly depleted adrenal hormones, intensive cardiovascular exercise may further deplete adrenal reserves.

  • Regular relaxation needs to be built into;daily life. Reading, having a bath, getting a massage or listening to music are great ways to promote relaxation.

  • Counselling or other therapies may be beneficial for those having to cope in the face of severe stressors.;

If you are feeling stressed and anxious, do not disregard it. Seek advice from your;GP or health professional.

Kerry Torrens is a qualified nutritionist with a post-graduate diploma in Personalised Nutrition & Nutritional Therapy. She is a member of the British Association for Nutrition and Lifestyle Medicine; and a member of the Guild of Food Writers. Over the last 15 years, she has been a contributing author to a number of nutritional and cookery publications including BBC Good Food.

Get At Least 7 Hours Of Sleep

You knew it was coming, but it’s here because it’s an important one. It’s been confirmed by multiple studies that lack of sufficient sleep is associated with higher levels of inflammation in the body.

To keep inflammation at bay, aim for at least seven hours of sleep to avoid increasing inflammation, says Dr. McNeely, and keep in mind that your sleep needs may be even higher. The National Sleep Foundation recommends adults get seven to nine hours of shut=eye each night.

And if you’re someone who is sleep-deprived for reasons outside of your control like night-shift workers or new parents not all hope is lost.

A September 2019 study in the British Medical Journal found that napping was associated with fewer cardiovascular events, suggesting that there may be some sort of protective mechanism to catching up on missed sleep with daytime naps. However, as with all things, moderation is key: Excessive amounts of daytime naps are also linked to higher levels of inflammation, according to Sleep Medicine.

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Try Sparkling Juice Or Perrier

If youre a cola drinker, youre probably experiencing the same health consequences from caffeine that coffee drinkers experience. A more healthful alternative is sparkling fruit juice or sparkling water. Youll still be getting a refreshing treat, but youll be adding water to your system, rather than detracting it , and youll be avoiding other caffeine-related side effects.

Successfully Managing Stress May Help Control Weight

While stress is an inevitable part of life for many people, the weight gain that can accompany it isnt. Changing your response to stress and adopting strategies to reduce it can keep the numbers on your scale from moving in the wrong direction, says Dr. Stanford.

These five strategies may help:

Burn off tension. Exercise is a crucial component of stress management, because physical activity can actually reduce cortisol levels. But you will find excuses to avoid workouts if you dread them. Finding an activity you love your “soulmate workout,” as Dr. Stanford calls it can help you maintain the regular physical activity you need in order to dissolve daily stress. For some people it might be yoga, for others, high-intensity exercise or a combination of the two.

Prioritize sleep. A lack of sleep can increase the amount of stress hormones circulating in your body. So ensuring you get enough restful slumber is crucial to managing stress effectively. “Avoid screen time at least an hour prior to bedtime,” says Dr. Stanford. This includes your smartphone. The blue light emitted by smartphones can interfere with sleep.

Talk to your doctor. If youre having problems coping with stress or controlling emotional eating, talk to your primary care physician. He or she may be able to refer you to a health coach, support services, or an obesity specialist. Medications might help some people, but these must be taken long-term or you may regain lost weight.

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