In challenging times like these when stress and worry are peaking don’t forget to look at what is at the end of your fork for some help. You can get a lot of support from the meals that you put together.
Let’s take a look at ideal inclusion and needed exclusions.
What You Eat Contributes To Your Stress Level
Food that contains a lot of sugar can cause a roller coaster ride for your blood sugar and this can cause you to feel jittery and to have mood swings. Best to stay away from foods in this category.
Keeping in line with the thought of controlling blood sugar, complex carbohydrates, foods high in fiber, are an important inclusion in a diet focusing on stress busting. Fiber slows down the speed that sugar enters into your blood stream, so it helps you to avoid those sudden spikes and drops in your blood sugar levels, balancing your mood and easing your stress. Foods high in fiber include cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, celery, berries, leafy greens, beans and whole grains.
Fiber is also key for your gut microbiome health and because your brain and gut are connected a healthy, happy gut microbiome leads to a happier you.
And if we are talking about creating a happy gut, we can’t forget fermented foods that are a good source of probiotics. So, we are talking about things like kefir, kombucha, apple cider vinegar and kimchi.
Some studies have suggested that omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial for improving mood. One possible reason is that omega-3 fatty acids are essential for brain cell structure and function. Another could be that they provide antioxidant and anti-inflammatory support.
Food sources of omega-3’s include wild caught salmon, sardines, flax seeds and chia seeds.
Magnesium is a go to supplement for improving sleep, quelling stress and calming nerves but why not get it from the food that you eat? Foods naturally rich in magnesium are leafy greens, such as spinach and Swiss chard and dark chocolate.
Finally, I want to mention that you can incorporate adaptogens to help you handle stress.
Adaptogens such as Ashwagandha and Holy Basil and some mushrooms including reishi and cordyceps are known to support the body’s ability to handle stress.
These can be easily included into your diet as teas or added into smoothies, salads and soups.
Here is one idea for you!
Stress Busting Hot Chocolate Recipe
Ingredients & Directions
Add to your blender and combine:
1 cup non-dairy milk (I love cashew for this one)
1 TBSP cacao powder
1 tsp maple syrup (or to taste)
1 tsp Ashwagandha powder
1 tsp Reishi mushroom powder
After you blend the ingredients add them to a pot and warm up.
Top with cinnamon if you like