If I’m being totally honest, I’ve had a pretty unhealthy relationship with food when it comes to stressful times in my life. I definitely stress-eat and when I do, I hardly ever reach for something healthy and I’ve found that while I may feel “good” in the moment after eating junk, I tend to feel even worse after the fact. I figured, I’m probably not the only one so, today I put together a small round up of foods to scarf down when your stress levels are over the roof.
Blueberries pack an ultra-powerful punch of antioxidants that help boost brain function and help fight inflammation caused by high cortisol levels (aka stress). Blueberries also include 4 grams of fiber in each cup, so they’ll help you stay full longer and since they’re small, it kind of tricks your mind into thinking you’ve eaten more than you have.
It’s no surprise, all that vitamin C that comes with the consumption of clementines, mandarins and oranges really does a body good but the part that really helps me when I’m stressed out is the actual peeling of the fruits. It forces you to stop what you’re doing and “focus” on the fruit itself, slowing down your mind and your emotions. Also, knocking back a few Cuties is a pretty guilt-free way to fill up on snacks.
I don’t know if it’s just me but whenever I get stressed, I actually crave and reach for something salty (typically Hot Cheetos, please someone save me from myself). Well, dehydrated veggies (and freeze-dried fruits) are a great chip alternative. It isn’t just about switching out junk food for something healthy though. The act of making your own Kale Chips at home is so rewarding. You made something from scratch and it’s healthy on top of that! Creating something just always helps mellow my stress.
Make Your Own:
Mix a couple cups of kale with a teaspoon of olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt or any other seasonings you’re craving (did someone say chili powder?) and roast at 350 degrees Fahrenheit until crispy. Let cool and you’re all set!
Let me know if you tried your hand at making kale chips! I want to see the fruits of your labor. Also let me know if you’d like me to put together a round up of different kale chip recipes 🙂
We should all know by now that avocado is both super yummy and way good for us! It’s loaded with good fats that help us stay full longer but they’re also full of potassium that helps lower our blood pressure (which can definitely get high if we’re under stress).
and of course…
As I mentioned in Your Guide to De-Stressing, the process of making a tea slows you down while the type of tea you drink can do wonders for your body and mind. Herbal teas like chamomile and peppermint are perfect for relaxation (and an upset tummy).
Next time you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed and reaching for junk foods, try to incorporate some of these foods into your snack time. Here’s to lowering our stress levels on week at a time!
Featured Photo by Joseph Gonzalez.