Beat the stress with these 5 Mood Enhancing Foods!

Stress is a risk factor for multiple medical complications including the very common diabetes, high BP, heart disease and even cancer. But when the mind and body are relaxed, you are able to think more clearly and handle situations better and this helps keep the stress away. But in today’s world as everybody is working round the clock, stress levels are up due to various reasons like pressure of a never ending to-do list, deadlines, family responsibilities and obligations, all leading to an over-whelming feeling of being pulled behind.

So, why pop pills later and spend a bomb on medical bills. The next time you feel the blues, eat along these wonderful foods that can help reduce stress. The best part is they are all ‘Healthy Foods!’

Here’s listing the top 5 stress buster foods to crave for.

1. Curd:

Many studies have shown that curd helps keeps stress at bay and acts as a great mood lifter. It has an instant calming and soothing effect as it reduces the levels of stress hormones. Curd is also listed in the list of natural therapy for depression and anxiety.

So here’s what happens when you have curd – Curd may lower brain activity linked to pain and emotions as the beneficial bacteria in curd act in the gut and send signals to brain which in turn lowers activity linked to pain and emotions in the brain.

Go ahead and indulge in a bowl of curd. You can also add some fruits and seeds to add in the extra punch and taste.

2. Lemon:

Many studies have shown that the humble lemon energizes and enhances the mood. The smell of lemon has been proved to reduce levels of stress and depression. It is a widely used substance in aromatherapy as it soothes away emotional stress.

Also, lemon has good amountsof Vitamin C which act as anti-oxidants that helps fight the free radicals associated with stress. Lemon water unlike caffeine, does not give an adrenal rush, instead helps to revitalize and hydrate cells, flushes out body toxins and provides oxygen to the brain to revive instant energy.

Ditch the regular soda for a glass of lemonade or fresh virgin mojito and feel the sooth-ness brush through.

3. Pepper Mint Tea:

Menthol – which is a natural sedative present in peppermint is a known muscle relaxant which not only gives a soothing feel (and helps in sleep disorders) but also helps to reduce stress and anxiety levels.

Peppermint also has great immune boosting properties and hence is thought that stress relief effect of peppermint tea maybe due to the immune system boost.

Peppermint also increases alertness and concentration, as the smell of menthol stimulates the hippocampus – the memory unit in the brain.

Skip the regular milk tea which hampers nutrients absorption and get yourself a cup of peppermint or herbal tea to experience its benefits.

4. Dark Chocolates:

Dark Chocolate is not only a sinful indulgence, but also has numerous health benefits and one of them isthat it acts as a stress reliever. Dark chocolate elevates mood by increasing serotonin and endorphin levels in the brain and is associated with simultaneously lowering levels of the stress hormone cortisol and catecholamines.

Also, the feel good factor after biting into a bar of chocolate is because ofanandamide, a neurotransmitter produced in the brain that temporarily blocks feelings of pain and depression.

Chocolate is also known as the new anti-anxiety drug. Dark Chocolates also have antioxidant properties which help in de-stressing.

5. Coconut water:

This natural drink which is widely available in all seasons is a wonderful de-stressing beverage. It contains several minerals like magnesium, calcium, potassium, B-vitamins which play an important role in lowering anxiety, depression, tension and stress.

Dehydration too may cause an increase in stress. Coconut water contains many essential nutrients, which help in rejuvenating the body and reduce muscle tension, boosting & restore energy and hence helping in alleviating stress.

Magnesium helps in relaxation of the nervous system and helps with the formation of serotonin - the feel good hormone. So drink a glass every day to help you stay calm and stress-free.

Now that you know these easy foods to bust stress, go ahead and try the above healthy tips to avoid the blues!

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