Stressed out … by Food?

Are you always busy, always on the run, always stressed out? Do you have no time for taking care of yourself because you always put children, relatives, relationship, and career first priority? No wonder you have no time to eat regularly! Sound familiar?
When overstressed, you may have headaches or migraines, anxiety or panic attacks, pounding heart, chest pain, sadness and depression, tension in back of neck or head, stomach problems, irritability, moodiness, bad temper, overeating, fatigue, frequent colds and other maladies.
What is stress in the first place?
According to the Webster-Merriam Dictionary, stress is “a physical, chemical or emotional factor that causes bodily or mental tension. Stress may be a factor in disease causation.”
But you shouldn’t always blame your children, or husband, or work, or traffic… for being worn out or tired. Sometimes the food you eat causes stress too. Surprised? If you read food labels, you will find how many chemicals, colors and preservatives we consume every day. Conclusion: avoid food with ingredients you cannot pronounce or don’t know the meaning of.
According to Ayurveda, we are what we eat. When we are stressed out, we need better quality meals to help us stay focused, grounded, in balance. But instead, we get trapped in cycles: we eat too much junk/processed food – we get even more stressed out - we eat even more refined, processed, junk. What shall we do? We have to break the cycle!
We have to understand that there are foods that might help us feel angry, depressed, fearful, worried, exhausted, anxious, cranky, irritable, jittery, gloomy, aggravated, and impatient.
The trans fatty acids in junk food and refined carbohydrates we consume reduce circulation and raise blood pressure keeping our body in a constant state of stress. Refined sugars raise our insulin level too high and too quick, and when it drops too fast we feel moody, depressed, etc. Caffeine boosts production of the stress hormone adrenaline, and alcohol upsets the blood sugar level and can disturb our ability to sleep.
Well, what we are supposed to do? We should eat unprocessed and unrefined whole foods, such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and seeds. Whole foods are digested properly and all nutrients our bodies need, will be absorbed much better. It helps us to deal with stress and anxiety and to fight off irritability and fatigue, because we can eat them as often as we want and need.
High-fiber foods are digested slowly, which can help control blood sugar. High fiber foods can also help with constipation, which can be a trigger for a stress overload because of high amount of toxins that are not eliminated. Low sugar meals can help stabilize insulin level and reduce stress. Overall, lean protein, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates can help you to stay balanced.
Whole foods are stress fighters and we have to incorporate them in our diet as much as possible. We need eat more avocados, bananas, fish, spinach, walnuts-to get more Vitamin B6; salmon, seafood, sea vegetables, to get Vitamin B12; asparagus, barley, mushrooms, legumes, oranges to get folic acid; almonds, apples, apricots, brown rice, garlic, leafy vegetables, spinach ,salmon - to get magnesium; asparagus, beet greens, broccoli, grapefruit, onions, radishes, strawberries, sweet peppers – for vitamin C; almonds, asparagus, cabbage, salmon, yogurt- to get calcium (contact me to get a list of all the foods which help us reduce stress).

Also, don’t forget to eat homemade foods as many times as possible and chew properly. Eating at home can be relaxing – not just healthy, and chewing allows you to slow down, both can thus relieve stress and help maintain balance.
Slow down, relax and enjoy.
Bon appetite to get rid of stress!

Author's Bio: 

Irina Wardas is a founder of As a Holistic Health and Nutrition Counselor she conducts Health and Wellness Programs for Women helping her clients to eat, feel and look better. Irina also teaches workshops and seminars and designs web based eClasses. For more information about her programs, upcoming events and classes, or to sign up for her newsletter visit: