Stress… no matter what we do, where we go, or who we’re with, stress is a consistent presence in any person’s life. There are different ways to deal with stress and for some, overeating is one way to help them cope. After all, how many TV shows have we seen featuring our favorite character turning to ice cream after a bad day at work or with a significant other?

Unfortunately, eating as a form of stress response creates secondary problems. The “go-to” comfort foods such as fries, mac and cheese, ice cream and chocolates are loaded with all the things that would make our pants leave judgemental teeth marks on our waist!

Thankfully, Mother Nature has created natural foods which would not only help you ease your anxiety but keep you feeling healthier as well! The next time you’re stressed out, why don’t you try munching on these stress-busting foods?

Oatmeal. Serotonin is a chemical which helps produce serotonin, a chemical in the body which induces a feeling of calmness. When buying oatmeal, choose the ones the old-fashioned, thick-cut ones because they take longer to digest, hence their calming effect lasts longer.

Turkey. Remember how tired you felt after Thanksgiving? That’s not just because you felt full. Turkey is rich in tryptophan which in turn signals the brain to release the sanguine chemical serotonin which makes you feel calm and even tired.

Asparagus. For years, scientists and physicians have linked depression to low levels of folic acid and one way to improve your mood is to incorporate asparagus into your meals! A single cup of asparagus provides two-thirds of your daily nutritional needs for folic acid.

Avocado. Being overly anxious is a poor response to stress. This is the result of unhealthy nerves and vitamin B deficiency. However, avocados are rich in the stress-relieving B vitamins. Not only that, they are high in monounsaturated fat and potassium which help decrease blood pressure.

Salmon. Adding fish to your daily diet can help you feel at ease. Because they are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon can help keep your cortisol and adrenaline hormone levels in check whenever you feel tense.

Spinach. This is probably why Popeye always seemed so happy. These leafy greens might be the farthest thing from your idea of comfort food but they are packed with magnesium which regulates the stress hormone cortisol and promotes a feeling of wellbeing.

Blueberries. They’re small but they surely pack a lot of antioxidants and vitamin C making them true heavyweights in the battle against stress. And in addition, you could never go wrong with a snack of tasty blueberries!

Oranges. Remember what they say about orange juice being part of the breakfast of champions? Vitamin C from oranges help lower blood pressure as well as cortisol levels. Eating a whole orange or drinking a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice without the added sugar gives you a quick burst of vitamin C!

Milk. A glass of warm milk before bedtime can help with sleep but it also has a calming effect by lowering blood pressure and relieving muscle spasms which are triggered when stressed.

Almonds. Rich in Vitamins B2 and E, almonds help boost the immune system during times of stress. A quarter cup each day does the trick! You can also try mixing it up by spread almond butter on fruit slices.


Knowing the proper food to eat is just one way of busting stress. You can find out more ways on how to deal with your daily stress and anxiety by visiting Rebecca Ginder, one of South Florida’s top therapists. Schedule an appointment with Rebecca Ginder now!