eat these foods to keep balanced + energized – during the holidays and beyond
The holiday season is upon us – are you frazzled yet? It is a time for celebration and cheer, but more often then not, it can be entirely overwhelming. Trying to find the perfect gifts, attending dozens of festivities, and entertaining family and friends can result in feeling pressured and on edge. While it may seem natural to turn to caffeine, sugar, or alcohol for a quick energy or mood boost, this can actually compound stress, weaken immunity, and increase anxiety.
Be sure to include these stress-reducing food groups in your diet everyday to stay merry and bright all the way through the New Year.
Complex carbohydrates produce serotonin; this brain-relaxing chemical creates feelings of happiness and calmness. Because whole grains are high in filling fiber and take a long time to digest, the serotonin will release steadily and strongly. Be sure to ditch your refined, white flour products that will result in a blood sugar – and mood – crash. Brown rice, wild rice, oats, quinoa, millet, and farro are all great options to eat for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Greens are rich in magnesium – which lowers stress levels and creates calm, balanced feelings. If you suffer from tension or migraine headaches, magnesium has been shown to lower their occurrence. Greens are also rich in calcium and can reduce symptoms of insomnia and create feelings of restfulness. Try to have 2-3 cups of kale, chard, spinach, arugula, or other greens to gain serenity. I like to have them on hand to throw them in a sandwich, salad, or soup.
You know that Omega 3 fats are good for you – but did you a diet rich in these fatty acids help keep cortisol and adrenaline levels from elevating. Foods like wild salmon, walnuts and flax seeds should be included in your diet for maximum benefits. Other healthy fats like avocados, nuts, seeds, and olives have a satiating effect and can help curb food cravings. Be sure to get a healthy fat at every meal!
While peppermint mocha’s and gingerbread lattes may tempting, you will be better off minimizing your consumption of coffee and switching to tea. Black and green teas help reduce stress and increase feelings of peacefulness. Tea provides a slow releasing, steady, natural energy that won’t result in the blood sugar crash and insulin spike that is credited to coffee. Struggling to reduce coffee consumption? As a reformed coffee junkie, I have fallen in love with this product to help tame my cravings. I also love this tea when I need a quick energy boost – it helps me feel alert and centered.
Getting a balanced breakfast in everyday can be a challenge; there never seems to be enough time, and it feels like you are making a choice between fast or healthy.Read More...