Your strategy to banish wedding stress may be to call your maid of honor and vent, or maybe go for a long endorphin-boosting run. Both good ideas, but did you know that you can also lighten your mood by what you put on your plate?
Experts have long known about the connection between what we eat and our mental state (and sorry to report, but that piece of red velvet wedding cake leftover from your tasting will do nothing for your anxiety level). Here are five foods that may help you feel calmer by the end of lunchtime:
Asparagus: A green veggie that blasts stress? Absolutely, says Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN. In fact, asparagus are loaded with folate, which may help you keep your cool.
Chocolate: An excuse to treat yourself? Yes please! When you're maxed out on wedding details and decisions, reach for a square of dark chocolate. High in flavanoids, which experts say have calming, mood-boosting properties, look for chocolate with a cocoa content of 70 percent or greater.
Oranges: Turns out, that glass of OJ this morning may be one powerful stress-buster. Past research has indicated that vitamin C (abundant in citrus) may reduce stress hormones in the body, and one study found that people who took vitamin C before a stressful task saw their stress hormones plummet. Yep, maybe bring a tangerine to the next meeting with your wedding coordinator.
Avocados: Permission to order the guacamole! Avocados, say experts, are loaded with stress-banishing nutrients like glutathione (which protects your body from oxidative damage), lutein, beta-carotene, vitamin E, and folate.
Black Tea: When it comes to nixing wedding stress, British brides may have the secret weapon. As it turns out, there may be powerful calming properties in that humble little tea bag. In one study, researchers found that black tea drinkers not only reported feeling calmer, but they had lower levels of stress hormones in their bodies than those who drank other beverages like soda.
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