When your plate is full of responsibilities and you’re praying for just one moment of peace, it can be really difficult to put one foot in front of the other; believe us, we know what it’s like. Taking time for yourself can be hard to do, but if you make it a point to take just a few minutes to grab a snack, you might be surprised to find that your stress will start to fade. That is if you know what kind of snack to grab! While “comfort food” might sound like the right choice, these healthy snacks are what you should be reaching for when you want to de-stress:
· Leafy Greens: While a salad might not exactly ring your “comfort food” bell, there is quite a bit to say about how a bunch of fresh greens can positively affect your body and your mindset! Crazy as it sounds, spinach actually helps you to produce dopamine, the pleasure chemical, with how much folate it contains. If you need to chill, why not make a little salad and you’ll feel great in no time!
· Oatmeal: Start your day off with a big bowl of steel cut oats and you’ll be setting yourself up for a positive start! Since complex carbs (think no sugar) are known to help the brain create serotonin, a ‘happy’ chemical, you can effectively control your blood sugar levels so your body has a steady supply of serotonin to last you through ‘til lunch.
· Blueberries: A handful of these little guys is just what you mind needs to relieve your stress! Since blueberries are full of antioxidants and phytonutrients (basically the superheroes of nutrients), the stress hormones in your body won’t stand a chance! Bonus: blueberries have been proven to improve your chances against cancer by boosting your immunity!
· Salmon: If you’re feeling anxious, your body is probably on overdrive creating adrenaline and cortisol, the main hormones that are associated with stress. Luckily, the omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon have been proven to help counteract these stress-inducing hormones. Why not head to the sushi bar and indulge in some delicious stress-fight salmon bites?
· Pistachios: This delicious snack is an easy way to fight anxiety and enjoy a few moments for yourself. Pack yourself a bag of these nuts and crack a few open when you get hungry. Not only will the repetitive motion with your hands help you to chill out physically, but the phytonutrients found in these nuts will help to calm your brain and offer cardiovascular support as well!
· Dark Chocolate: Okay, I saved the best for last! While dark chocolate has been proven to aid in heart health, your mind can also benefit from this sweet treat! Not only your morale improve from indulging your sweet-tooth, but the antioxidants in the rich cocoa will help your blood vessels to relax, which in turn leads to lower blood pressure and improved circulation. Treat yourself to a bit of dark chocolate and let the stress just melt off your body!
The phrase, “you are what you eat,” can certainly apply here – when you know what kind of properties are in your food you can pick the right snacks to benefit any situation, even the most stressful moments! Which of these super foods that help fight stress will you be stocking up on?