With finals looming around the corner, the temptation to binge on your favorite decadent treats to soothe your stress is stronger than ever. However, wolfing down ice cream and chips all throughout reading week won’t keep your stress at bay; it may make it worse. If you consume the right foods when you’re stressed out, they can soothe your stress and aid in combating the harmful effects that stress has on your body. You’ll be thankful in the long run when you ace your finals with flying colors and don’t pack on the pounds from mindless noshing.
When you feel the tension rising, grab a handful of almonds. They are plentiful in vitamin E, which boosts your immune system, and also in B vitamins, which can help your body hold up during seriously stressful times. Even if you make the switch to almond butter instead of peanut butter in preparation for exams, you will get the almond fix that will help with your busy week. If you really despise almonds, reach for walnuts or pistachios because they will help lower your ever-rising blood pressure during this time, as well.
If you’re craving something creamy, try to opt out of the Andy’s run and instead eat an avocado or guacamole. The thick, rich texture will satisfy that craving and help reduce your stress levels. Avocados are also plentiful with monounsaturated fat (the good kind of fat) and potassium, which both lower blood pressure.
3) Skim milk
We all know milk is loaded with calcium, which can reduce muscle spasms and soothe stress. Drinking a glass of nice, cold skim milk has been proven to lower anxiety and irritability.
Many foods with carbohydrates produce serotonin in the brain, which makes you feel happier. However, some of these foods, like chocolate, get digested too quickly so the serotonin burst doesn’t last. Since thick, hearty oatmeal is so high in fiber, it takes a long time for your stomach to digest it, so you’ll feel much happier and more satisfied for longer.
Oranges’ richness in vitamin C has been proven to be effective in lowering stress levels. Not to mention, vitamin C is a well-known immune system booster; eating an orange, drinking some orange juice or taking a vitamin C pill will help keep you from getting sick before and during finals week.
Magnesium, a main mineral in the makeup of spinach, is credited with lowering stress levels, as well. Additionally, studies have shown that not getting enough magnesium can lead to migraines and fatigue, which are the last things you need while studying. Only one cup of spinach can provide 40% of your daily value of magnesium, and you can get so creative with it!