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  • ANS Staff

10 Healthy Foods That Calm & De-Stress

1. Organic Asparagus is a power food that is full of B vitamins that help to calm and de-stress you. They taste great steamed but can also be lightly seasoned, thrown raw into salads or they go great in stir-fries.

2. Organic Avocados are a great source of healthy fats that can help you block stress. They're rich in glutathione, a substance that blocks intestinal absorption of certain fats that cause oxidative damage (the process that creates free radicals, the harmful compounds responsible for aging). Avocados also contain more folate than any other fruit. Try to stick to a single serving (about one- quarter of an avocado). Thinly sliced, it can go a long way on salads or replace mayo.

3. Oranges and other citrus fruits are vitamin C powerhouses. What's even better about them is that they can be taken on the go. You can just throw them in your pocket, backpack or purse and forget about them until you're ready for an easy, inexpensive, healthy snack.

4. Organic Walnuts, if tolerated and you do not have a food sensitivity to tree nuts are a nice option. Walnuts contain alpha- linolenic acid, an essential omega-3 fatty acid, and other polyphenols that have been shown to help prevent memory loss. And studies conducted by the National Institutes of Health found that the omega-3 fatty acids in walnuts keep the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline in check. To bring out their flavor, I toast them for 10 minutes, then chop them and add them to salads. They can also be ground up and substituted for flour.

5. Organic Green Tea is a no-brainer. While there is some caffeine in certain types of tea, both black and green varieties can help you relax. Green tea contains an amino acid called theanine, which has been linked to reducing anxiety and promoting sleep. And a 2006 study found that black tea drinkers were both quicker to de-stress and less stressed in general than people given a tea substitute.

6. Organic Gluten Free Oatmeal, if tolerated and you do not have a grain sensitivity, provides a great healthy and filling carb. Carbs naturally boost your mood by kick-starting serotonin production in the brain. Grains with more fiber take longer to digest, though, thereby releasing serotonin at a more slow-and-steady pace. Make sure to watch your portion size since it is a high carb food.

7. Fresh Organic Leafy Greens are full of magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral crucial to a smoothly running body. It helps muscles relax and also calms the nerves. It's found naturally in green veggies, particularly leafy ones, like kale and spinach.

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