Are avocado and chocolate foods that help you when stressing out about something upsetting during lockdown? Let’s face it: we’ve all found some comfort in foods that are not healthy and ended up being more stressed after a series of tasty meals coupled with a bottle of beer or glass of wine. When working from home is very likely to be turning to ‘comfort’ foods and hope that big ” happy” meals, take-out, fatty foods, sweet foods, and alcohol could calm your nerves and the anxiety you are facing lately…But is this a healthy solution?
While turning to unhealthy foods is somehow comforting at the time, your body isn’t getting the right nutrition, and you soon begin to feel less energetic, more apathetic, followed by a limited ability to concentrate and focus, which, naturally, will create more stress.
What are the Foods that fight stress?
Choosing your foods is a matter of knowing which foods to avoid when it comes to combating stress and helping you to deal with feelings of stress and anxiety. A balanced diet will include a moderate amount of each of the different food groups and eat your stress away.
Whole grains, leafy vegetables, and lean proteins ensure that your body gets the optimum amounts of nutrients to fight both physical and mental health problems. Choosing these stress-busting foods which have a range of great properties which help the body to combat stress, against unhealthy foods, will help to heal and calm your mind permanently, rather than providing a temporary fix.
If you want to fight stress, make Avocado your best friend
I remember my first giant avocado. It was a gift from a film producer who was growing giants avocado in his garden in California when not filming. Known for being nutrient-dense fruits, avocados are delicious and their properties to stress-proof your body makes them an easy choice for any meal. Creamy and versatile, this fruit can be eaten in a range of different ways whether you enjoy it raw, made into sauces, dressings and dips or in a smoothie. Avocados have high glutathione content which specifically blocks the intestinal absorption of certain fats which cause oxidative damage. More than any other fruit, they contain a higher levels of vitamin E, folate and beta-carotene which boosts their stress-busting properties. Before you love it too much, be careful with the size of your portion, as it is high in fat.
Is Chocolate Good for the Soul?
I don’t know about you, but I always found chocolate good for the soul. Chocolate might be seen as an unhealthy treat, but in my own experience there is an undeniable connection between chocolate and our mood. Studies have shown that eating chocolate can actually make you happier. However, that doesn’t mean that you can start munching on chocolate bars every time you’re stressed out – chocolate works best as a de-stressor when eaten in moderation and as part of a healthy and balanced diet.
I love making my own chocolate and I know from my grand mother that dark chocolate in particular is best for you, as it contains more flavonols and polyphenols, two hugely important antioxidants which can help combat stress, more than many fruit juices. I remember she was using special spoons and pots for making chocolate and she will never compromise on her recipe or the utensils she used.
I am a grandmother myself now and I would never dare to cut the rose petals she used to ornate the chocolate bars with anything other than “the rose scissors”, or cut the strawberries with anything but “the strawberry knife”. I found the whole experience of making chocolate very charming and yes, it might be related to those beautiful memories from my happy childhood.
I love sharing with you my own journey into healthy foods and when in doubt, don’t stress out, ask Anna Cortesi who is launching her app for advanced nutrition support and guidance, and Healthy Women Magazine as we speak.
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