23 Mar Feeling Stressed? Here Are Some Tips That Can Help
Coronavirus (COVID-19) information is everywhere you turn. It is in the news, social media, text messages and emails. Although it is useful information, that doesn’t mean you won’t find yourself more stressed and anxious about the situation. Let’s take a deep breath and read some helpful information to get you through this stressful time. These tips are to educate you to help you be the best version that you can be.
EAT HEALTHY AND LIMIT COMFORT FOODS
Chronic episodes of stress often cause a pattern of psychological and behavioral responses that alter the behavioral state in humans. Increased levels of cortisol can cause you to eat more food than normal. People often tend to eat more comfort type foods when stressed. Comfort foods are highly palatable foods that are generally high in sugar and fat. These foods are not healthy and lead to weight gain.
When I was in the check-out line at the grocery store this week, I saw shopping carts filled not only with toilet paper but loads of unhealthy snacks and food items that possibly would not have been purchased in normal situations. Do you need to load your cart with boxes of fast food frozen items, 3 packages of double stuffed Oreos and multiple 2-liter soda bottles? That is stress eating on some level. Instead of binging on these unhealthy food items, you can take the time to learn how to eat healthy during this time of stress.
There are so many apps and websites available to help develop recipes for the type of eating you desire (vegetarian, vegan, low fat, low carb, paleo, etc.). So how do you overcome this habit? According to a paper published in Harvard Mental Health Letter, “Why stress causes people to overeat”, if a person’s stress continues over time, your cortisol level can stay high resulting in an increase in appetite. Eliminating high-fat sugary foods from the refrigerator and avoiding these comfort foods will help you maintain healthy habits.
Here are some websites to guide healthy meal planning and food purchasing habits:
- Very Well Fit has dietitian-approved blogs https://www.verywellfit.com/top-healthy-food-blogs-4570841
- Eating Well: http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/17947/mealtimes/dinner/
- Cooking Light: https://www.cookinglight.com/eating-smart/smart-choices/clean-eating-recipes
- All Recipes. https://www.allrecipes.com/recipes/84/healthy-recipes/