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What should you do to manage stress? About 40% of Americans say that stress is a major cause of consuming unhealthy foods and overeating. It causes physiological changes that affect mood.
If you get overweight, it will only make you feel worse than before. Therefore, overeating will make you feel unhappy. It is the way you put yourself in a vicious circle that is hard to break.
On the other hand, consumption of carefully selected healthy foods have a positive effect. Such foods will boost your mood and reduce anxiety. Proper diet, not only can help you feel calm and satisfied, but also can reduce the damage that stress does to your body.
Manage Stress With The Best Foods
When you are under severe stress – constantly occupied with various duties; going through a difficult emotional period etc, you need to know that the food you consume at this level is the most important.
1. Dark Chocolate. We all know that beautiful mood will always come with the taste of a piece of chocolate. Chocolate causes a chemical reaction called anandamide. It means that your brain produces neurotransmitter which temporarily blocks the feeling of pain and depression.
Chocolate contains chemicals and substances that help you feel better. Chocolate is “the new anti-anxiety drug”.
Scientists say that people who consume 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate daily, or chocolate drinks full of antioxidants, feel calm than those who do not consume.
2. Protein. A small amount of high quality protein helps in regulating of blood sugar levels, improves mood and gives you more energy.
Manage stress with foods rich in protein or vegan source protein.
3. Bananas contain dopamine, a natural chemical that boosts your mood. They are rich in vitamin B6, which helps to ease your nervous system. They also has magnesium – another nutrient responsible for positive mood.
4. Coffee affects the neurotransmitters associated with mood control, so a morning cup of coffee has a positive effect on your general well-being. Studies have shown that coffee activates brain stem cells to generate new neurons and thus improves the health of the brain.
Coffee contributes prevention of depression, because it increases neurogenesis – strong antidepressant.
5. Turmeric. This spice contains the pigment known as Curcumin, responsible for its medicinal effects. It has neuroprotective properties, can improve your mood and help with depression.
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6. Purple Berries. Anthocyanins are antioxidants found in blueberries and blackberries. They provide production of dopamine in the brain. This chemical is crucial for your mood and brain functions – coordination, memory etc…
7. Omega-3 Fats play a major role in your emotional well-being. Various studies have shown that these omega-3 fats help in preventing or reducing depression. They act as antidepressants without side effects.
Here is my choice of Omega-3 Foods or vegan source also.
8. Oolong Tea. Drinking oolong tea can help you feel calm and relaxed. It contains high levels of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) that has an overall soothing and anti-anxious effect.
9. Fermented Foods. Fermented vegetables like kefir are rich in beneficial bacteria, which impacts the health of the stomach and positively affect your mood. They have a direct effect on brain chemistry. Stomach is your “second brain”, created from identical tissues as brain. It contains large amounts of the neurotransmitter serotonin, linked to the control of mood and the feeling of happiness.
10. Kiwi. One kiwi contains more than 85% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C. Vitamin C actually helps to reduce production of stress hormones and increases your immunity.
11. Mushrooms are an excellent source of the antioxidant selenium, associated with maintenance of a low-level of anxiety.
You need healthy food regularly to manage stress, not just in times of stress. It helps in maintaining the mental, emotional and physical balance of your body, said Dr. Mercola. EAT!!!