Eating Away: 3 Foods and a Drink that Aid Stress Relief

June 09, 2021

brain foods

Stress is an inherent component of our daily lives. Many healthcare institutions offer therapies to their patients. We seem unable to maintain our mental health effectively caused by work pressure and an unhealthy lifestyle. But did you also know that certain foods have anti-stress properties? You can relieve your stress and anxiety without using any drugs or medications by simply eating certain foods.

Anxiety is a common ailment that affects millions of individuals worldwide. Symptoms can vary, and some people only have them occasionally. However, someone who has symptoms for more than six months may have a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). The symptoms of GAD include psychological and physical symptoms, such as:

  • fear
  • irritability
  • tension
  • muscle tension
  • excessive worry about everyday events and problems
  • difficulty concentrating
  • heart palpitations, elevated heart rate
  • issues with their personal social and work relationships
  • chest tightness

Doctors frequently use various interventions to treat GAD, including talking therapies such as cognitive-behavioral therapy and medicines. These standard treatments are not always effective in the long run. Some studies, however, suggest that appropriate eating can help to improve symptoms. 

Stress and Anxiety at Work

The majority of people struggle to maintain life responsibilities with job responsibilities. Finding balance can appear to be a near-impossible task for entrepreneurs, and the stress of having to complete everything might be overpowering. And, if untreated, stress can result in additional problems, such as high blood pressure and depression. People can manage their anxiety by making a range of lifestyle modifications.  

Stressed people tend to make bad eating choices. When you self-medicate with unhealthy foods, you might exacerbate your anxiety and ruin your health. High-calorie or sugary foods merely deceive us into believing we feel so much better. Eating nutritious food (and making it a mindful choice) can provide significant stress alleviation. Break the loop of resorting to food for comfort when you're anxious and look for relief elsewhere. Incorporate these anti-stress items into your diet. If you include these into your everyday diet, you will feel more grounded and productive. You might even shed a few pounds as a result.

Tea

A nice cup of tea might help you calm down. According to a study, consuming a warm drink can increase the feeling of sociability. Regardless of the taste, sipping a warm beverage has a calming effect on our minds. Some plants, such as lavender and chamomile, have a calming impact on our minds.

Green tea is among the finest options for stress relief since it contains flavonoids, which can improve the health of your brain. Green tea includes theanine, an amino acid gaining attention due to its possible impact on mood disorders. Theanine contains anti-anxiety and soothing properties, and it may enhance serotonin and dopamine levels. In human clinical trials, 200 mg of theanine improved self-reported relaxation and tranquility while lowering tension, according to a 2017 study. Green tea is simple to incorporate into one's daily diet. You can use it in place of carbonated drinks, coffee, and alcoholic beverages.

Chamomile tea is extensively used as a herbal cure by people worldwide due to its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antioxidant, and relaxing effects. Some individuals believe that the flavonoids found in chamomile provide relaxing and anti-anxiety qualities. According to a new study, chamomile does help with anxiety symptoms but did not prevent further bouts of stress. Chamomile tea may be beneficial in the treatment of anxiety. It is widely available and harmless in large doses. Caffeinated black tea stimulates the stress response in many people, so go for decaf and herbal teas instead. Herbal teas such as chamomilepeppermint, and ginger can be extremely relaxing to the digestive system and can aid with anxiety by calming the nervous system in your guts.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate can relieve stress primarily through two mechanisms: chemical reaction and emotional impact. The chocolate flavors provide a feeling of satisfaction and aid in stress reduction. Because dark chocolate is high in antioxidants, it might help you feel better. Other research has revealed that dark chocolate or cocoa may improve mood. However, because most of these studies are observational, the findings must be evaluated with care. Although it is uncertain how dark chocolate relieves stress, it is high in polyphenols, particularly flavonoids. Flavonoids have the potential to reduce neuroinflammation and cell death in the brain while also improving blood circulation.

Chocolate has a lot of tryptophan, which the body converts into mood-boosting neurotransmitters like serotonin in the brain. Dark chocolate is also high in magnesium. Eating a magnesium-rich diet or taking supplements may help to alleviate depressive symptoms. Choose chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa to reap the benefits. Also, please remember that dark chocolate has many calories, so limit your intake.

Fatty Fish

Omega-3-rich fish include salmon, mackerel, sardines, trout, and herring. Omega-3 is a fatty acid that has been linked to improved cognitive performance and psychological health. Salmon is high in Omega 3 essential fatty acids, which aid in the generation of serotonin. DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) found in Omega 3 fats help to nourish the brain while also reducing stress hormones. Moreover, the Omega 3 in salmon can help to reduce inflammation and enhance healthy blood circulation, both of which are hampered by chronic stress. You can also include tuna and halibut in your diet.

Nuts

Stress uses up our B vitamin stores, which can be replenished by nibbling on almonds. B vitamins maintain our neurotransmitters happy and help us deal with the fight-or-flight response to stress. The potassium in nuts is also essential: eating a couple of servings of potassium-rich pistachios a day can lower blood pressure and minimize the strain on our hearts caused by stress. Nuts and seeds are high in Omega 3 and Omega 6 essential fatty acids, which aid in stress reduction. Walnuts are an excellent source of Omega 3. Tryptophan is also found in cashews and sunflower seeds, which increases serotonin production and can help you relax on a stressful day.

Selenium is abundant in Brazil nuts. Selenium may help mood by lowering inflammation, which is commonly elevated in those with a mood disorder, such as anxiety. Selenium is also an antioxidant, which aids in the prevention of cellular damage. It is also anti-carcinogenic, which aids in the prevention of cancer. Other nuts, animal proteins, and vegetables high in selenium include mushrooms and soy. It is critical not to take too much selenium because it can have adverse side effects. Adults should consume no more than 400 micrograms of selenium per day. As a result, avoid taking high-dose supplements or eating more than three to four Brazil nuts per day.

Make these foods your choices, whether incorporated in your lunch or as a snack, especially if you have a very demanding job role or tasks. Not only are they yummy, but nothing makes you feel better than knowing they are beneficial to your health, just like making ergonomics as part of taking care of your health at the office. If you are too busy, FlexiSpot understands because this brand spent countless hours finding solutions that improve people’s health at work.

A healthy workplace cares about the wellness of its people. They can avoid typical work-related injuries and remain safe during working hours. Workplace ergonomics is a broad term that refers to redesigning an office environment to enhance employee well-being. It is a science that provides a safer working environment for employees. Standing desks supplement the concept of office ergonomics by allowing workers to sit or stand while performing their duties. This simple action results in a remarkable improvement in their performance and healthcare.  

Make sure to do your best to apply ergonomics on top of your healthy, stress-free eating game. You may check FlexiWellness Center for more topics on workplace well-being.

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