There’s no question that stress can take a toll on our health. From making us more susceptible to colds and other infections to causing weight gain and anxiety, stress has been linked to many health problems.
The connection between food and stress is a complex one. Believe it or not, our food habits can profoundly impact our stress levels. Some foods can help to reduce stress.
So if you’re looking for an easy way to reduce stress and improve your health, try incorporating some foods that reduce anxiety and depression.
Below, we’ll look at some of the most common stress-relieving foods and discuss how they can help improve your health. But before that, it’s salient to know the reasons for being stressed.
Things Must Know About Stress
Most people are familiar with the phrase “stress kills.” And it’s true: When we’re chronically stressed, our health takes a hit. But what exactly is stress?
Stress is a response to an internal or external cue that disrupts homeostasis or the body’s normal state of balance.
The following things can cause stress:
- Work-related pressure
- Money troubles
- Family problems
- Health concerns and the list goes on.
When these things pile up, they can affect our mental and physical health. We’re more likely to get sick and suffer from a host of other health problems.
Here are some ways that stress can affect our health:
- Elevates the risk for heart disease.
- Increases symptoms of asthma and other respiratory disorders.
- Contribute to gastrointestinal problems like ulcers and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).
- It makes us more likely to suffer from headaches and migraines.
- Causes muscle tension and contributes to conditions like fibromyalgia.
- Acne, psoriasis, and eczema.
- Stress can lead to hair loss and other problems.
- May lead to depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
- It makes us eat more and leads to weight gain.
Many people need to learn that there are things we can do to help offset the effects of stress on our health. One way is to eat stress-relieving foods.
These foods have been shown to help reduce stress levels and improve mood. Let’s find out how eating healthy reduces stress.
How Eating Healthy Can Reduce Stress
Healthy eating habits can do more than improve physical health; they can also help improve mental and emotional health. Eating healthy foods reduces stress and promotes relaxation.
There are a few different ways that healthy eating can help reduce stress.
- Healthy eating can improve your overall physical health. When your body is healthy and functioning well, you’re better able to handle stress.
- Eating healthy foods helps to improve mood. Certain foods, such as those high in omega-3 fatty acids, can reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Eating a balanced diet also enhances energy levels, which can be helpful when you’re feeling stressed.
- It can help you develop healthy coping mechanisms for dealing with stress. It most likely helps individuals not to turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as overeating, drinking, or smoking.
Eating healthy is the key to reducing stress; hence let’s have a look at secret foods for instant stress relief.
Foods That Reduce Anxiety and Depression
Certain nutrients are known to have calming properties and are particularly effective in reducing anxiety and depression.
#1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
These fatty acids are a type of unsaturated fat that is essential for proper brain function. They can be found in fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines, as well as in flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts.
It is a mineral that is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Magnesium can treat anxiety and depression. Good sources of magnesium include dark leafy greens, nuts and seeds, legumes, fish, and whole grains.
These are live bacteria found in fermented foods. Yogurt and kimchi are rich in probiotics. They have been shown to reduce anxiety and depression by promoting a healthy gut microbiome.
#4. Vitamin B6
This water-soluble vitamin is necessary for the proper function of many enzymes in the body. It is also essential for the production of serotonin to regulate mood. It can be found in poultry, fish, potatoes, bananas, and legumes.
#5. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is another water-soluble vitamin and an antioxidant that is salient to protect our body against stress. It also boosts our immune system, which is essential when we’re under pressure. Citrus fruits, tomatoes, bell peppers, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts contain vitamin C.
As mentioned, foods that reduce stress hormones are necessary to maintain a healthy life. But certain foods can actually trigger stress rather than relieve it.
Foods That Cause Stress – 4 Item To Know
If you’re struggling with stress or anxiety, it’s important to be aware of the foods that can trigger those feelings.
Caffeine is a stimulant that can cause or worsen stress and anxiety. Limiting or avoiding caffeine altogether is the best option if you’re susceptible to anxiety.
Like caffeine, sugar is also a stimulant. It can also cause spikes in blood sugar that can lead to feelings of anxiety and irritability.
Alcohol can disrupt sleep, lead to anxiety and worsen stress. If you’re struggling with stress or anxiety, it’s best to limit or avoid alcohol.
#4. Processed Foods
Processed foods are often high in sugar, unhealthy fats, and other ingredients that can all contribute to stress and anxiety.
If you’re struggling with stress or anxiety, consider making some changes to your diet. Avoiding or limiting foods that worsen stress and anxiety can help to feel better and manage stress more effectively.
In case you can’t avoid the craving for some sweet and processed food, only then try some dark chocolates. Dark chocolates are way healthier than those milk chocolates. Also, they can help manage stress if taken in specific amounts.
In conclusion, stress is a genuine and severe issue that can have visceral significant implications for our health.
There are many ways to avoid this, but some simple things that can help are exercise, deep breathing, and spending time with loved ones.
However, making simple changes to our diets and incorporating stress-relieving foods into our diets can also reduce the negative impact stress has on our health.
So next time you’re stressed, don’t forget to take care of yourself and try to consume as many stress-relieving foods as much you can!