Feeling blue? Then reach for food! No, not cheesecake. Certain ingredients are known to relieve symptoms of stress, and many of them are low-fat and healthy (so you can be thin and happy—what’s more to love?)
Here are some foods that can help you lift your spirits and energy levels, a must-have for the busy holiday weeks or any time you’re on a tight schedule. These are just some of the recipes for life you’ll find here at o5.com
Make a ‘Happy Meal’
Many of the mood-lifting foods can be found in a Mediterranean diet. This includes fish, olive oil, fruits and vegetables, cheese, and yogurt. (Tip: yogurt is one of the best low-calorie snacks!) You don’t have to give up your steak, though—a little red meat is good for you, too. Complete the meal with a glass of red wine, which is also good for your heart!
Get the right carb high
Complex carbohydrates from whole grains are one of the best ways to increase your seratonin levels. Seratonin is a neurotransmitter that’s crucial for maintaining the proper chemical balance—and women are particularly sensitive to the ‘mood crash’ when this balance is disrupted. This is actually one reason we feel emotionally upset right before we get our period.
So if it’s that time of the month (or just a bad day) fortify your spirits with a diet that’s rich in complex carbs. You can get complex carbs from oatmeal, brown rice and pasta, or a whole wheat bread.
Eat in the right sequence
We can also manipulate our body chemistry by eating food in a certain sequence. The best way to do it is to start the meal with a complex carbohydrate and wait about 20 minutes before taking in a lean protein
Debbie says the order in which you eat your food affects your mood. To get the most stress relief, she says you should first have some complex carbohydrates, then, about 20 minutes later, have some lean protein (good sources are eggs, fish, chicken and cheese).
Feel better with fish
Certain kinds of fish are high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are very important to brain function. These fish include salmon, mackerel, trout and halibut. You can also find omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts and flaxseed oil. Try to incorporate these into your diet at least thrice a week.
Omega-3 fatty acids are such potent mood boosters that experts list them as one of the natural ways to alleviate depression.. They can even lift your energy levels when you are sleep-deprived.
Indulge in dark chocolate
Dark chocolate is particularly effective in beating stress. It releases hormones that can help alleviate the symptoms of stress, and it can also give you a much-needed energy boot.
Photo from oprah.com