Stress Awareness Month

Top 10 Foods for Stress Relief:

Feeling stressed? Instead of reaching for candy, try one of our top 10 foods for stress relief. There's no cure-all food to erase frustration, but you can get some stress relief by exercising and including more of these foods in your diet.

1. Avocado and Banana-That's two things, we know, but what do these fruits have in common? They're loaded with potassium, a vital mineral for keeping blood pressure low.

2. Tea-Calm frazzled nerves with a soothing cup of your favorite tea blend.

3. Swiss Chard-The magnesium in Swiss chard and other leafy veggies helps balance the body's stress hormone, cortisol.

4. Fatty Fish-The heart-healthy omega-3 fats in fish such as salmon, sardines and tuna manage adrenaline levels to help keep you calm, cool and collected.

5. Whole-Wheat Pretzels-When staring down the vending machine, opt for whole-grain snacks like whole-wheat pretzels or crackers. Not only will you feel fuller from the fiber, but also the carbohydrates offer an energy boost and trigger the brain to release a feel-good chemical called serotonin.

6. Carrots-Munching on crunchy foods helps beat stress. Nutrient-rich carrots, celery and other crunchy, fresh veggies offer satisfying crispness that won't bog you down with too many calories.

7. Milk-Have a glass to get more B vitamins, protein, vitamin D and bone-building calcium to relieve tense muscles. Stick to the low-fat (1 percent) or skim varieties. Try drinking some milk around bedtime to bring on more restful sleep.

8. Yogurt-Next time you are feeling stressed, skip the ice cream and instead enjoy a colorful yogurt parfait.

9. Nuts-Stress runs you down, which leaves you open to sickness. Almonds, pistachios and walnuts can boost your immune system with vitamins and zinc.

10. Chocolate-Research indicates that dark chocolate may lower levels of stress hormones. Chocolate also contains sugar (a carbohydrate), so it releases mood-improving serotonin. It's all right to indulge; just keep the portions in check.

Read the full article at http://www.foodnetwork.com/healthy/photos/top-10-foods-for-stress-relief

5 Science-Backed Benefits of Meditation:

1. Improve focus and memory

2. Reduce stress and anxiety

Research at Harvard Medical School found that meditation can physically change the brain’s amygdala, the portion of our brain related to stress and anxiety, and lower our levels of stress.

3. Reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease-Heart disease continues to be a global problem and could affect many of our lives as we age. we have one extra weapon in our arsenal to help improve our cardiovascular health.

4. Boost our immune systems- regular meditation could help us get sick less often, giving us more time to have fun and be with our loved ones, instead of lying in bed and feeling miserable. Let’s remember that tip the next time flu season rolls around…

5. Reduce physical pain- help mitigate chronic symptoms and reduce dependencies on prescription medicine.

How to Mediate:

A simple way to begin is to first find a comfortable seated position. Keep your eyes and body relaxed, and focus on your breath. Try not to fight all the thoughts and chitter chatter that run through your head. They’re normal. Just observe them and then focus on your breath again once they have passed. The positive effects you start to experience from daily meditation might surprise you. What is there to lose?

Read full article at -www.johnnonemaker.com.

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