As a budding entrepreneur, stress comes with the territory. Call it an occupational hazard, if you must. With intense amount of pressure coming from trying to meet deadlines, the last thing you need is stress induced by a poor diet as well.
Continual stress puts the body in a state of constant alertness, as it increases the energy production, causes muscular tension and heightens heart rate. That might sound like exactly what one needs to get more productivity from the day. But putting the body through a constant ‘Fight or Flight’ mode will fast deplete energy levels and result in loss of nutrients, which can compromise the health of the immune system, digestive system as well as circulation system.
So, can a healthy diet put your health back on track?
It sure can!
A healthy diet will ensure that the body is better able to manage stress symptoms, while also ensure you stay productive during high stress moments. Here are 5 diet tips for all you workaholics.
1. Start The Day On The Right Note
Choose a good breakfast. The way you start your day will decide how well you cope with the demands of the day.
A high protein breakfast that contains eggs, cheese, meat, nuts and low fat dairy products will provide nutrients that help sustain brain and body fuel. Breakfast is also the best time to eat fruits that will stimulate digestion, enhance detoxification and relieve stress on digestive system.
2. Don’t Ignore A Healthy Lunch
While most workaholics will skip lunch to make time for last minute meetings, this is a very bad practice. No matter what your day looks like, make room for lunch.
A hearty salad with plenty of vegetables and a protein portion or a home-made stew with lots of vegetables is a good lunch option to satisfy your appetite and ensure a more productive and stress-free afternoon. Protein increases your energy levels while healthy fats such as olive oil, nuts or seeds help control your body’s dopamine and serotonin levels, which control your mood and stress levels.
3. Keep Your Body Fuelled
Do you get the mid-afternoon munchies? Go for snacks such as nuts and fruit that keep blood sugar levels even and steer clear of fat laden junk foods and packaged snacks your office has handy in the cafeteria.
Almonds are high in calming magnesium and omega oils, and hence make for a very filling yet healthful snack. Celery is also a great snack to calm your mid-afternoon nerves. It activates the parasympathetic calming tone of the nervous system, which is why it’s traditionally used as a sleep and high blood pressure remedy. At all costs, avoid high-carb such as chips and crackers. While these may fill satisfy your growling stomach, they WILL rob you of some much needed nutrients and are full of empty calories.
4. A Feel-Good Dinner Truly Helps
You have had a rather stressful day, and now your body needs to relax. Before you think of ordering that greasy burger with fries or make up your mind to indulge in a pizza (which you believe you deserve after battling a day from hell, and I cannot honestly say you are wrong in thinking so!), take a long deep breath and THINK. What does your body really need at this moment? You need to boost your serotonin levels – your body’s ‘feel good’ hormone. And for that, it’s highly recommended that you ditch the greasy, salty junk food and rather opt for a plate full of green vegetables to replenish minerals lost throughout the day.
Vegetables such as broccoli, kale, cabbage and cauliflower aid in detoxification and provide natural carbohydrates that boost serotonin. These vegetables also have immunity-boosting powers to keep you from getting sick.
5. Your Mantra For Every Meal
You want to succeed in life but not at the cost of your health. The solution: Eat mindfully.
When planning your mealtimes, the most important element in staying stress-free is to eat mindfully. Sitting down and chewing thoroughly is a crucial part of digesting and allowing mealtimes to be a part of your relaxation and not add to stress patterns. So, step away from your Laptops and Smartphones and take the time to enjoy your food.
You may also like to read – Mindful Eating: Discover The Joys Of Building A Healthy Relationship With Food