When people feel stressed at work, they often feel tempted to reach for the next carbohydrate-rich, fatty food they see. All the emotional eating can only lead to more stress. Initially, you’ll feel better bingeing on fries and burgers. Afterwards, you start feeling cranky and sleepy. If this all sounds familiar to you, know that you need to change your current food choices that sabotage your health.
The reason why you have these food cravings is that the cortisol levels in your body rise each time you feel negative emotions. Bust your stress the right way by fueling your body with foods that truly relieve your tension and improve how you feel for a longer time.
Check out the list of stress-busting, healthy foods below.
Health enthusiasts love blueberries for several reasons. One, they’re sweet and tasty – great for smoothies! Two, blueberries have very low fat content. This fruit is perfect for those who want to lose weight. But the huge benefit that blueberries offer is their ability to fight stress in our body.
The fruit is considered to have the highest antioxidant capacity. Containing high levels of vitamin C, blueberries guard cells from getting damaged and lower cortisol levels (our stress hormone).
2. Low-Fat Greek Yogurt
Low-fat greek yogurt is much better than regular yogurt in a way that is has less carbohydrates and sodium. Creamier in consistency (but less tasty though), this healthy snack contains high amounts of vitamin B6 and B12. Vitamin B6, also known as Pyridoxine, helps you cope with work-related stress by aiding in the production of serotonin – an important neurotransmitter that balances your mood. Vitamin B12 or Cyanocobalamin also regulates your mood and improves your ability to concentrate.
3. Dark Chocolate
There is evidence that highly stressed people were able to recover after eating dark chocolate for 14 days. We repeat: Dark chocolate. Unlike milk chocolate, dark chocolate makes a healthier choice since it has lower concentrations of sugar and fat. Flavanols that are found in dark chocolate enhances blood flow to your brain thus promoting healthy brain function. These natural compounds also help dilate your blood vessels and lower your blood pressure. Just remember to eat dark chocolate in moderation.
4. Sweet Potatoes
Dieters who want plain white rice replaced go for sweet potatoes as an alternative. Sweet potatoes have generally lower carbohydrates and are good sources of vitamin C and iron. Vitamin C lowers cortisol, your stress hormone. On the other hand, iron boosts your immune system. Regardless of whether you feel anxiety on Monday mornings or constantly worry about your projects, eating sweet potatoes during meals or snacks definitely helps!
This all-natural, classic treat is the perfect choice for transforming your health. Going beyond reducing your risk for developing diseases, apples contain antioxidants that keep you in a positive mood. Take an apple with you to work everyday so you can have something healthy to munch on each time you need more energy. Choosing fresh fruits keeps you happy and energized without experiencing that sugar crash.
6. Hard-Boiled Egg
Yes, hard-boiled egg can be one of your best comfort foods. Not only does it satisfy your hunger pangs, it also contains tons of nutrients and vitamins like A and B12 which again, reduce your overall stress levels. If you’re on a weight management program and want to include healthy snacks as part of your regimen, you can’t go wrong with hard-boiled eggs. Remember that boiling eggs is a better option since you don’t have to deal with a lot of calories.
Selecting a good combination of snack foods to sustain your body at work is the key to a better mood. When you feel good, you tend to be more creative and productive. Feel free to add healthy treats to this list so you can have more variety in your diet.