Five Foods That Naturally Help Relieve Stress

 

If you’re stressed out, activities like exercise and meditation are a big help, but did you know that eating the right foods also relieves stress? Paying attention to your diet and incorporating certain healthy items helps you stay calm in the face of chaos. Here are five good choices suggested by the Food Network:

Bananas

These yellow treats are loaded with potassium, which is good for you and helps to lower your blood pressure. If you’re not in the mood for something sweet, you get similar benefits from potassium-rich avocados.

Leafy vegetables

Leafy vegetables like chard are packed with magnesium, a compound that helps balance the stress hormone cortisol. Use these veggies for cooking or make them part of a healthy salad.

Fatty fish

You may already know that eating fatty varieties of fish, like tuna and salmon, gives you a boost of omega-3 fats to help your heart health. What you might not have realized is that omega-3 also aids in lowering your adrenaline levels, helping you feel calmer. If you have a family history of heart problems or are worried about your own cardiac health, you’ll also feel calmer knowing that you’re eating a preventative diet.

Whole grain snacks

Stress might drive you to snacking, but you can turn that urge into something healthy by opting for whole-grain varieties of snackables like crackers and pretzels. These snacks trigger your brain to release serotonin, a calming neurotransmitter. They’re all high in fiber, so they aid digestive health while they help you feel more content.

Tea

Caffeine wires you, which may increase your stress, but you’ve got many caffeine-free calming tea choices. Chamomile is one of the most popular teas among those who want to relax. It’s often marketed in “bedtime” blends. The American Institute of Stress says that chamomile is also sold in supplement form if you prefer to take it as a pill.

You may have noticed that all five of these stress-relieving foods are also healthy overall. The Mayo Clinic says that maintaining a healthy lifestyle is key to overall stress relief. You’ll make bigger strides if you eat healthy foods and incorporate regular exercise and stress-relieving activities like yoga, tai chai, breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, and meditation into your stress management plan. Find out more about stress and how to fight it.