If you’ve been experiencing moments of stress and anxiety in your life (and haven’t we all with the recent world events?), you might be looking for ways to relieve some stress in your life. One simple way is with food!
Did you know that there are actually foods that you can eat that will help to relieve stress? Sometimes simply indulging in some of our favorite foods can lift the spirits and relieve some stress, but there are also some foods (spoiler alert – they’re healthy!) that actively work to calm your nervous system and therefore help to reduce feelings of stress.
When you start eating certain foods, you will begin to notice that your stress levels are lowered. These foods are very natural and come from the foods that you eat every day. They are not only good for your body, but they will also help to release the tension in your body so that you can relax.
Most of these foods are foods that help reduce cortisol – the stress hormone. By reducing the amount of cortisol flowing through your body, these foods have the effect of calming your nervous system and, therefore lowering your stress levels.
If you have a stressful job, the benefits of eating the following foods will help to reduce anxiety and get your body on track so that you can function at work the way that you need to without mental clutter, stress, and anxiety. Here are some examples of the best foods to eat to calm your nervous system and get your stress levels back under control.
Foods That Calm Your Nervous System
Oatmeal – Oatmeal is a fantastic food for calming down when you have trouble sleeping or when it’s time to relax. Oatmeal is full of magnesium which helps you to sleep.
Beans – A highly nutritious food, beans are very high in fiber and protein. They have been shown to have great effects on reducing stress. They contain magnesium, which is an important mineral for nervous system health. The magnesium in beans helps with relaxation. It also helps with the production of serotonin in your brain, which will allow your body to produce less cortisol (also known as stress hormones or adrenaline). This is why people who eat large amounts of beans are much less likely to develop depression.
Salmon – Salmon is high in the mineral, magnesium. Similar to the effects of beans, salmon will help to reduce stress and promote relaxation. It’s also a great food to enjoy for your skin.
Bananas – With lots of potassium, bananas are great for increasing your energy levels while helping to relieve stress. Make sure that you eat one or two half an hour before bedtime in order to get a good night’s rest.
Avocados – Is there anything avocados can’t do? Not only great in helping with weight loss, avocados are also fantastic for increasing serotonin production in your brain, resulting in increased happiness. When taken daily, avocados can help to reduce the effects of depression and anxiety.
Sweet Potatoes – Sweet potatoes are full of beta carotene and vitamin C. These nutrients will help to promote the production of endorphins in your brain that will make you feel happier and less stressed. And, they taste great too!
Yogurt – Yogurt is a great food for helping with digestion, but it’s also full of calcium which will help your body to produce higher levels of serotonin. As you are likely aware, serotonin is the hormone that is responsible for happiness in your brain.
Spinach – Spinach is another rich source of magnesium which is such a useful mineral when it comes to the nervous system and reducing stress. One cup of spinach a day will set you up for a healthy nervous system.
Walnuts – have you ever noticed that walnuts look like a little brain? Not only do they look like a brain, but they are also a very good food to eat for a healthy brain and nervous system. Walnuts are a great source of healthy fats as well as being rich in many vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B21 and vitamin E. These nutrients can help to lift you up when you’re feeling stressed, anxious, or even depressed.
Chia Seeds – Chia seeds are a source of tryptophan which is an amino acid responsible for triggering the release of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin promotes feelings of calmness and sometimes even sleepiness, with research now suggesting it can also help reduce anxiety.
Dark Chocolate – Yes, even treat foods can help to calm down your nervous system and keep your stress levels under control! Any chocoholic knows that chocolate helps to release those feel good chemicals in our brains and now the research is backing up what we’ve always known – chocolate is good for you! OK, so, you probably should still only eat this calming food in moderation but it’s nice to know that you can indulge in a snack of dark chocolate while still doing your mind and body a favor!
If you are looking for ways to relieve stress in your life, try eating one or more of these foods on a daily basis. You’ll notice that your stress levels will start to drop and your mood will improve.
They’re tasty and nutritious and now it’s good to know that these foods will also help to calm your nervous system – enjoy!