Well, these days everything, starting from a mild flu due to a compromised immune system to something as severe as heart disease or neurological disorders have all been attributed to the rising levels of stress in our fast-paced world. Keeping in view the current scenario, everyone has been trying constantly to keep up with the cut-throat competition in every arena of the society, without ever giving much importance to the warning signs that our body sends as an indication to the deterioration of our inner health.
There is no single medical illness that has afflicted humankind, whose symptoms do not get aggravated by stress. In fact, stress alone can be the root cause for many severe and debilitating illnesses like depression, obesity, auto-immune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, etc., which can all have fatal consequences.
With a list of reasons in your mind that you consider as the possible causes of stress in your life, it might seem very difficult for you to rid yourself of stress. But the silver lining here is, as long as stress helps you to gear up and prepare yourself for the upcoming challenge, it is not always bad. It helps you cope with all the problems that you think that you have.
But, when it starts affecting both your health and your ability to work, that is when you should pause and think about what needs to be done. The good news here is, the right set of foods can serve as a companion for you to relieve your symptoms of stress. Wondering how? Read on to find out the impact of certain home remedies that have been proven by the scientific community to curb the release of cortisol and other stress hormones into the bloodstream.
Effective Home Remedies for Stress Relief
By elevating the levels of dopamine, serotonin and epinephrine, bananas serve as one of the most powerful ways of getting these “feel-good” neurotransmitters gushing in your body for instantly lowering the levels of stress hormones in the bloodstream. Being packed with a very high content of potassium, it enables your body to retain water and regulate blood pressure, which plays a major role in soothing your mind.
Being a rich source of vitamins and minerals, bananas help you stay energized and deal with fatigue and tiredness, thus preventing you from procrastinating, which piles up your work load and increases your chances of getting stressed.
Did you know that some medications for relieving stress and depression are actually composed of omega-3-fatty acids? The benefits of these good fats for your brain cannot be emphasized enough. They sharpen your mind, increase your acuity and act as perfect mood elevators that enable you to cope with stressful situations. Fish is one of the richest sources of omega-3-fatty acids followed by flax seeds, walnuts, almonds, pistachios, olive oil, almonds, etc.
Dark Green Vegetables
Well, if you think that mood swings and a constant roller-coaster ride of emotions due to the fluctuations in your hormone levels, especially during pregnancy and pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS) have been stressing you out, then go grab foods like dark greens like broccoli, asparagus, spinach, turnips, avocados, okra, Brussels sprouts, etc. to increase your intake of folic acid.
It improves blood circulation in the body and enhances your immune system, thus making you feel more energized and confident to deal with stressful events. Most pregnant women are given folic acid supplements to reduce the irritability and restlessness during pregnancy.
Black Tea and Green Tea
Anything that can reduce the synthesis of stress hormone like cortisol in the body can help you find your way out through the stumbling blocks that life puts in your way. A study has reported that the consumption of 4 cups of black tea for 6 weeks in a row dramatically limited the body’s ability to release cortisol.
Well, you do not necessarily have to consume so much of it in a day but replacing caffeinated drinks like tea and coffee with healthy, herbal drinks like green tea or peppermint tea can certainly help you in reaping their benefits for relieving stress and soothing your mind.
Citrus fruits are the richest sources of vitamin C that helps to beat stress by slowing down the release of stress hormones in the body. Vitamin C acts a very powerful anti-oxidant by enabling the body to scavenge harmful free radicals that accumulate over a period of time causing oxidative stress. Yet another benefit of this vitamin is its ability to act as an immune stimulant, thus providing you with enough strength to combat illness and cope with the day-to-day stress.
Obtain the recommended dosage of 200 mg of vitamin C per day by increasing your intake of citrus fruits like grapefruits, oranges, lemons, melons, kiwi, papaya and other sources of vitamin C like strawberries, cherries, dark leafy vegetables, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes, cilantro, etc. Grab a glass of orange juice first thing in the morning and experience the difference in your ability to manage your job stress levels during the day.
So the next time you feel those constant bouts of stress, walk into your kitchen and give yourself a treat with these mood-enhancing foods. Needless to say, over-eating of any of the above foods can do you more harm than good and therefore, it is important to set limits for yourself and enjoy the benefits of these foods.
A stress-free life makes your immune system strong and also helps you to overcome genetic predisposition to a plethora of medical illnesses. It enables you to lead a healthy lifestyle involving a well-balanced diet and regular exercise, which in turn, keeps the levels of stress under control. Hence, you can consider it as a vicious cycle where bad eating habits and an unhealthy body leads to stress and stress leads to bad habits that over a period of time deteriorate your physical health and well-being.
Besides, adequate sleep, a healthy sex life, a good belly laugh, an active social life, altruistic acts can all serve as great stress busters that help you combat the ravages of stress and live a happier life. Before stress begins to take a toll over you, both physically and mentally, incorporate the above-mentioned remedies in your daily life, without experiencing any side effects that are associated with most anti-depressants and medications used for relieving stress.