Updated: Oct 30, 2022
What is Stress?
What you feel when life’s demands exceed your ability to meet those demands.
The adrenal fatigue theory suggests that prolonged exposure to stress could drain the adrenals leading to a low cortisol state. The adrenal depletion would cause brain fog, low energy, depressive mood, salt and sweet cravings, lightheadedness, and other symptoms.
Here are some foods that may help.
Turmeric - Whether solo or in curry powder, turmeric is an anti-inflammatory powerhouse. This orange-yellow root, which is used as a culinary herb, is believed to act as an adaptogen, a stress-relieving food. Its active compound, curcumin, is believed to help with a wide range of stress-related ailments, such a depression, skin disorders and infections, as well as autoimmune diseases. When looking for foods to reduce cortisol, sip turmeric tea or sprinkle turmeric in recipes to reduce stress levels. Hawksview Honey makes a great Lemon Turmeric Honey, that can be added to hot water, or just taken by the spoonful, so yummy.
Sweet Potatoes - Eating sugar-laden food has been found to reduce the release of cortisol in the brain. Aim to get natural sugars from sweet potatoes and you'll also get fiber and beneficial carbohydrates, which can boost serotonin, the feel-good chemicals in your body. That makes this root vegetable a stress-relieving food! I love them anytime a day. Add them to your smoothie, to your eggs for breakfast or lunch, in a salad, or barbequed! Delicious...
Salmon - How often do you eat this fatty fish? You're not only doing your heart and brain good, but research shows that eating DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid), an Omega-3 fatty acid found in salmon, makes it a stress-relieving food. Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids have a calming effect on your body, making salmon among the best foods to help reduce stress.
Oranges - Like other citrus fruits, oranges are loaded with vitamin C, an antioxidant that has been shown to reduce the symptoms of stress, such as anxiety and high blood pressure. Peel an orange or a handful of clementine's to help with stress.
Pumpkin Seeds - Pumpkin seeds (AKA Pepitas) are a powerhouse of nutritional value and their high magnesium content has shown to a big player in reducing stress. Research has shown that magnesium alleviates stress in healthy adults with low levels, so sprinkle your salads, add to your yogurt, mix into your cottage cheese, or just grab a handful and enjoy the benefits.
Turkey - Turkey has a well-known amino acid, tryptophan (acts like a natural mood regulator), has been shown to help your body make serotonin. Plus, it helps you make melatonin, the hormone that helps you sleep better. Put some turkey breast on your sandwich, cut up in your salad, wrap with cucumber into a cabbage leaf, or lettuce leaf; it is also packed with protein, so two birds one stone.
Spinach - You all know you need to eat leafy greens for total body wellness...but did you know that spinach has a high magnesium content that makes it a stress-relieving food too? Studies have shown that magnesium is an important nutrient in foods to help with stress. Toss spinach into your daily salad for a calming effect.
Yogurt - Probiotics may help reduce the effects of stress. Found in fermented foods like yogurt, probiotics reduce the effects of cortisol on the body, particularly as it relates to cognition and memory. Look for plain, unsweetened yogurt and add a drizzle of Hawksview Honey, pumpkin seeds, blueberries, and some cinnamon and you have a sweet treat without a lot of added sugar.
Almond Butter- Eating enough protein at meals and snacks can help balance your hunger and fullness hormones-the ones that get out of whack with stress. Almond butter can contribute to your overall protein intake, plus you get healthy fats and fiber, too. Eat 1 to 2 tablespoons of natural almond butter on whole grain bread, on celery sticks, on apple slices, or in a bowl of oatmeal for a balanced meal or snack.
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In good Health, Wellness and Love
- Donna - Registered Holistic Nutritionist