Four Small Changes to Your Diet Can Quickly Reduce Your Stress
If you find yourself feeling frazzled, there are some quick and easy changes that you can make to your diet that will help you manage stress and improve your mood. By following these quick and easy suggestions you can increase your energy and have HUGE returns in your overall health:
1. Drink lots of water. Did you know that by the time you’re feeling thirsty, that you’re already 1% dehydrated? If you have constant headaches, if you’re feeling lethargic, or if you’re generally feeling cranky, dehydration might be taking its toll on your body. According to a study in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, as much as two out of every three people in the United States are dehydrated by about 16 to 24 ounces of water. Carry a bottle of water with you and make sure to drink from it throughout the day. Make a game out of it by challenging yourself to finish the water in your cup/water bottle within a half hour, or even an hour.
Are you bored with water? Try squeezing fresh lemon, lime, or even an orange to give your water a delicious flavor without adding refined sugar.
2. Limit caffeine. It is O.K. to drink a cup of coffee in the morning. However, too much caffeine in your diet will increase your feelings of stress and anxiety. Caffeine will also counteract the work you’re doing staying hydrated……so remember to drink more water to compensate for this loss.
3. Limit sugar. Too much sugar in your diet will not only add unwanted pounds, it will make you feel stressed and anxious. The sugar surge and subsequent “crash” will just tempt you to consume more sugar in order to keep energized. Instead, reach for a healthy snack such as a banana or other favorite fruit. Keep in mind that fruit juices and sports drinks have a lot of “hidden” sugars that will contribute to weight gain.
4. Eat more Salmon and Walnuts. Whenever you are under stress, your brain releases the anxiety/stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. Fortunately, a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce the production of these harmful stress hormones. Two of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids are salmon and walnuts. Both of these foods boost the level of serotonin in your brain and improve your mood and ability to manage stress.
I encourage you to give these simple suggestions a try and see if they help you improve your health. Please share your discoveries in the box below. I’d love to hear your thoughts!