You’re about to go in for your interview. It’s a job that you know is a big deal, maybe for an internship that you know will set you on the path for the career you want, or a job at a company you’ve wanted to work at for years. You’re in the waiting area when you notice for the first time just how badly your palms are sweating. You’re hoping they don’t notice just how bad you’re sweating everywhere. You’re focusing on your breathing, but your mind is a little too busy trying to focus on everything that could go wrong.
All this stress might have been avoided if you just had a couple of these foods with your lunch.
Aside from being insanely delicious, avocados are rich in folate. Stress and high blood pressure have been linked to a folate deficiency. By indulging in a little avocado with your lunch, you’re actually helping your body fight future stress. Use this recipe to get all the benefits of avocados for breakfast in just two minutes.
Broccoli is high in vitamin C. It actually has more than the old vitamin C standby, an orange. People who consume more vitamin C have been shown to have lower blood pressure and lower levels of cortisol, the adrenal glands response to stress which has been shown to impair memory and exhaust the body. Try this recipe for cheesy broccoli tots, for those days when you really just don’t want to eat your veggies.
Walnuts are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which has been shown to reduce cortisol and adrenaline levels, as well as prevent memory loss. This oatmeal bake gives you the potassium of a banana, the vitamin C of strawberries, and the ALA of walnuts, all of which will help to put your mind at ease.
Potassium-rich foods, like bananas, have been found to lower blood pressure. Potassium affects the body’s sodium absorption. Whereas sodium constricts blood vessel walls, potassium relaxes them. If you want to de-stress, try making this rich and healthy dessert.
5. Dark Chocolate
Here’s a reason to indulge a little: dark chocolate has been shown to increase serotonin and endorphin levels, which improves mood. In fact, eating a little bit of dark chocolate every day has been linked to lower levels of cortisol. To really up the benefits, marry avocado and dark chocolate together, like in this truffle.
6. Green Tea
Drinking five cups of green tea a day has been shown to reduce stress by 20 percent. Five cups may sound like a lot, but even just one cup a day could help combat the stress of an interview. For a more long-term effect, try sneaking more green tea into your day with morning smoothies.
Spinach and other leafy greens are rich in magnesium. Stress can actually deplete your magnesium intake, which can help trigger depression, irritability, and even psychosis. Green smoothies are a great way to get more magnesium in your life.
Honey has been shown to reduce inflammation in the brain. Although it’s a relatively new study, this reduction may be linked to lowering levels of anger, anxiety, and depression. It’s often used as a remedy for insomnia. Be careful not to have too much, though. Too much sugar may actually exacerbate anxiety. Be sure and do your research on how to make every day a little sweeter with honey.
Mango is filled with a compound called linalool which has been shown to lower stress levels. There are plenty of ways to add mango to your diet, and the tropical feel of it might help you feel like you’re on vacation, rather than in a waiting room. Add mango and avocado to your smoothie for a relaxation boost.