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June 5, 2017 • Brain Health, Healthy Living

Tips for Stress Control Say It All

stress control girl nature lake water

Diet and lifestyle are unbeatable tools for boosting stress resiliency. Here are the best of the bunch.

  • Be physically active / exercise on a regular basis. Daily is best. Any activity counts, but the more vigorous the activity the better.
  • Minimize processed foods and fast foods.
  • Consume mostly whole, “nature made” foods, particularly fruits and vegetables. Those with the most anti-inflammatory oomph are likely the best and include: red onions, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts, red/orange/yellow bell peppers, dark leafy greens, apples, red grapes, berries, cherries, oranges, and plums. Inflammation is thought to be the primary way stress damages the body.
  • Consume omega 3-rich foods often. These include: oily fish (salmon, sardines, lake trout, herring, cod), omega 3 eggs, walnuts, whole soy foods, hemp/chia/flax seeds, canola oil, oysters, and small leafy greens. Fish oil supplements are also an option for getting in optimal amounts of omega 3 fats, but eating oily fish is superior.
  • Maintain optimal blood levels of vitamin D via safe sun exposure, consuming vitamin D-rich foods (oily fish, fortified dairy products, mushrooms, eggs) and appropriate use of vitamin D supplements. Vitamin D is essential for mitigating stress at the level of the brain.
  • Avoid sugary beverages and minimize sugary foods.
  • Use anti-inflammatory herbs and spices regularly in your dishes and meals – turmeric, curry, ginger, and rosemary are especially potent.
  • Spend time in nature regularly. Daily best.
  • Maintain positive relationships with family and friends. Express love as much as possible.
  • Engage in relaxation practices regularly – deep breathing, yoga, meditation, etc.
  • Cultivate and nurture your spirituality, especially via practices that focus on love and forgiveness.
  • Get optimal sleep – approximately 7-8 hours per night.

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