Stress is part of our lives. We do our best to minimize and manage it. Sometimes it is just unavoidable where you go. The key is to learn how to focus on the things you can control. Things like food, lifestyle changes, and mindset.
Find ways on how to feed your body and have better moods.
It is no secret that stress can wreak havoc in your system. It affects how you function in your day to day life. The amount of stress varies with each individual. Some health problems can trace its origin back to stress. In addition, there are certain foods that can improve your mood and energy.
Imagine yourself full of energy and happy. Do you picture yourself rushing to grab carb-laden foods and sweet treats to get energy and ease your cravings? Do you consider the after-effects of these foods after you have consumed them? No. Oftentimes, you just care to satisfy those cravings. Never mind how it impacts your blood sugar.
Then comes the sugar crash. Think about how you feel when the energy runs out. Nutrition plays an important role in how it affects your mental health. It affects it in both a positive and negative way.
Happiness and Mood
What about thinking you need a “happy pill” to boost your mood? You are told you have a brain imbalance that needs to be treated by medication. Don’t get me wrong. As a Nurse Practitioner, I believe there is a time and place for medications.
I also believe in wellness. I believe everyone should be educated on how to manage their health through prevention and wellness. Additionally, I believe each individual is responsible for their health and should partner with their providers to keep themselves healthy.
On the other hand, what I don’t believe is, depending on medications just to function. How do you gauge the effectiveness of that medication?
A lot of factors can play a role in how you are feeling. There can be inflammation. Studies show that inflammation can lead to the brain:
– and can influence how neurochemicals function
– affect your mitochondria (energy production)
-impact your feedback systems and stress hormones
Then there is the Gut-Brain connection. 70% of your immune system is housed in your gut. According to this article, 90% of Serotonin (the happy chemical) is produced in the gut. Additionally, 50% of the body’s dopamine (learning about rewards) is produced in the gut as well. It is also known that the gut functions as the sentinel for inflammatory response.
Factors that affect the health of your gut
-Exposure to medications such as anti-inflammatories, antibiotics, oral contraceptives
-Toxins, pesticides, GMO
-Diet and nutrition
How do you feed your gut for better health? Here are 3 simple ways.
1. Eliminate processed food and toxins
2. Add whole foods and good fats to your diet
3. Add fermented foods, probiotics to support your gut environment.
Anything that contains preservatives, dyes, taste, and hydrogenated vegetable oils. They also tend to be boxed and bagged with a long list of ingredients. It is full of chemicals to extend its shelf-life due to mass production and transportation. These foods are manipulated so it’s texture and taste is better for consumers. It also tends to be full of toxins and pollutants. Buying and eating organic is better.
Whole foods and good fats:
After working on eliminating processed foods, your next step is to replace it with good foods and fats. This wonderful list includes fresh fruits and vegetables, pastured meats, fresh fish, nuts and seeds, eggs, traditional fats like olive oil, coconut oil, or grass-fed ghee. This is also a time to start avoiding gluten-containing foods.
Probiotics are the good guys in your gut. They help keep the bad bacteria in balance. Prebiotics feed these good bacteria. When looking at probiotics, it is important to consider CFUs, or Colony Forming Units, this is how probiotics are measured. This number must be clearly displayed on the probiotics bottle. A probiotic should be in the range of 3-50 billion CFUs to best suit your digestive system.
Stress and Travelling: Most of our immune cells live in our gut, so it is imperative to reinforce them during times that might prove crucial for our immunity, like while traveling or going through a stressful situation. The intake of probiotics at this time can help you to avoid any future concerns.
Food is nature’s medicine
Here are some examples of some therapeutic foods you can incorporate in your daily lives.
Sole: Himalayan sea salt contains over 80 ionized minerals. This can support electrolyte balance, hydration, pH balance, and detoxification. Fill a glass jar with 1/4 of these salt and filtered water. Let it sit overnight. The first thing in the morning, take a teaspoon of water from this jar and mix with filtered water to drink.
Gelatin: Traditional broth bone recipes contain gut healing properties from gelatin. You lose out on these if you consume a diet high in muscle meat. Gelatin is high in glycine. This may help improve problems with sleep, anxiety, hair, skin, and joints. You can get this benefit by making Jello snacks with green hydrolyzed collagen.
Coconut oil: This oil is full of medium chain triglycerides. These fats are immediately available for energy since they do not require pancreatic enzymes for digestion.
Do you feel overwhelmed already? Do you want in-depth detail on how you can accomplish these? This tracker and cheat sheet is for you.
Healthy eating is everyone’s goal. If not, then it should be considered as a priority. Finding easy ways to incorporate the right foods in every meal is the key. It will have a great impact on your both on your weight and mental health.