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Relieve Stress with Foods

There are certain foods and snacks that can actually help to calm you. These special foods contain helpful nutrients and/or energy that will get you through the day felling more focused, even and balanced.

High-folate foods are an excellent way of getting the nutritional support your body needs to function properly without all the stress and other horrible symptoms that stress can cause you. Folate is the natural source of Vitamin B9 found in a variety of foods – most often in leafy green vegetables, dried beans and peas. When folate is used as an additive in foods, generally in bread, grains or cereal or when it is taken as a supplement, it is called folic acid and it is an important vitamin. Production and rapid division of new cells are assisted by folate, as it helps to make both DNA and RNA. Folate can reduce the chances of getting some forms of anemia and may even help to prevent cancer. Folate may also play a role in the prevention and/or treatment of many health conditions, including stress, depression and insomnia.

Some of the foods that contain the highest level of folate are the following in 1 cup servings: cooked lentils – 80% Recommended daily allowance, cooked spinach – 65% RDA, cooked collard greens – 44% RDA, and cooked turnip greens – 42% RDA. Some other foods that contain excellent or very good levels of folate are romaine lettuce, raw beets, mustard greens, asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli, pinto, garbanzo, black, navy and kidney beans, papaya, green peas, leeks and Brussels sprouts.

Avocados are rich in glutathione – a substance that specifically blocks intestinal absorption of certain fats that cause oxidative damage. Avocados also contain lutein, beta carotene, vitamin E, and more folate than any other fruit. A single serving (1/4 of an avocado) has plenty of B vitamins too. Avocados also count as a healthy fat that should be eaten daily.

Strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries are all rich in Vitamin C, which has been shown to be helpful in combating stress. Vitamin C can lower blood pressure and lower our levels of cortisol after a stressful situation. Blueberries have some of the highest levels of an antioxidant known as anthocyanin, and they have also been linked to several positive health outcomes, including sharper cognition. Oranges are another great form of Vitamin C.

Cashews are an especially good source of Zinc. A 1 ounce serving has 11% RDA. Low levels of Zinc have been linked to anxiety and depression. Because our bodies have no way of storing Zinc, it is important to get some each day. Oysters also have good sources of Zinc in them. Just 6 oysters contain more than half of the RDA of Zinc.

Chamomile Tea is one of the most recommended relaxing suggestions around. Chamomile has been known to lead to a significant drop in anxiety symptoms. Chamomile also helps to promotes sleep. To relax after a long day, sit in the quiet for 10 minutes with a cup of Chamomile Tea.

Dark chocolate is known to lower blood pressure, which can add a feeling of calm as well. It contains more polyphenols and flavonols (2 important types of antioxidants) than some fruit juices. You can safely allow yourself this snack once a week.

Turkey contains an amino acid called L-tryptophan. This triggers the release of serotonin, which is a feel-good brain chemical. Because of its documented calming effect on people, they sometimes feel relaxed or even tired after eating a turkey dinner. Oatmeal also causes the brain to produce serotonin and is a great food to eat that keeps you full longer with its beta-glucan, a type of soluble fiber.

Salmon and other Omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods protect against heart disease. Omega-3s have also been found to keep the stress hormones, cortisol and adrenaline from peaking.

These are just some of the many foods you could eat on a regular basis to keep stress at bay. When you incorporate eating a stress-free diet, along with other suggestions I have shared with you, you will be well on your way to living a life with more joy, more happiness and much less stress.

This article is written by Cynthia Joy Maurice. Cynthia is a Life Design & Holistic Wellness Specialist. For your convenience she provides consultations and services at 4 locations in the Myrtle Beach, SC area; as well as in the comfort of your home or online. To contact Cynthia, please call 843-465-7138 or email her at findyourjoys@thejoys.us

About Cynthia Maurice

Providing Stress, Pain & Life Management Solutions with Personalized Wellness Therapeutic & Support Programs.

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