Living Healthy Blog

Learn how to live healthy in the areas of Integrative Functional Medicine, Herbal Medicine, Aromatherapy and Nutrition.

  • Denine Rogers

Want to start getting better nutrition. Here are the last five tips for getting good nutrition and maintaining a more healthy diet, even under stress.


Brown Bag It - Many people go out for lunch to fast food places, coffee shops or restaurants that serve less than optimally healthy fare. While this does save a bit of time, you can save money and usually eat much healthier if you take a few extra minutes to pack and bring a lunch from home.

No Caffeine After 2pm - Since caffeine has a half-life in your body of at least 6 hours, caffeine you ingest with dinner can interfere with your sleep at night.

Banish the Bad Stuff - It's easier to avoid sugary, fatty, and otherwise unhealthy foods if they're not in your home, particularly begging you to eat them! This may sound like a no-brainer, but you should go through your kitchen and throw out anything your body can't use in a healthy way. That way you'll be forced to snack on healthy food when you're stressed.

Stock Your Home with Healthy Fare - The best way is to plan a menu of healthy meals and snacks at the beginning of each week, list the ingredients you'll need, and shop for everything once a week. That way you know you'll have what when you need it, and you won't have to stress over what to eat each night; you'll already have though of it!

Tension Tamers- Adopting stress reducing techniques should also reduce your stress-induced cravings for unhealthy or excessive food. Try yoga, martial arts, journaling, laughter and meditation/deep breathing; here's a fuller selection of relaxation techniques you can use to calm down and turn off your body's stress response.


Reference:

Scott, E. (2007). Good Nutrition: How to Combat Stress with Good Nutrition. About. com. Retrieved, November 7, 2007.


What Changes Will You Make To Have Better Nutrition?


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When we get busy and stressed, then we tend to make poor nutritional choices that can actually increase our stress levels. Here are five out of the ten tips for getting good nutrition and maintaining a more healthy diet, even under stress.


  1. Eat Breakfast - Skipping breakfast makes it harder to maintain stable blood sugar levels and effective functioning during your busy morning. Grab a hard-boiled egg and container of orange juice on your way out the door. Make time for a breakfast meal and that lunch will come soon enough.


2. Opt for Green Tea - If you're a coffee junkie, you may not realize the effects caffeine has on your system. However, you can reduce your stress levels and improve your mental performance throughout the day if you gradually wean yourself off of large amounts of caffeine. A relatively easy and healthy way to do that is to replace coffee with decaffeinated green tea, which has a soothing taste and then added benefit of loads of antioxidants


3. Try Sparkling Juice or Perrier - If you're a coal drinker, you're probably experiencing the same healthy consequences from caffeine that coffee drinkers experience. A more healthful alternative is sparkling fruit juice, or sparkling water. You'll still be getting a refreshing treat, but you'll be adding water to system, rather than detracting ir and you'll be avoiding other caffeine-related side effects


4. Carry a Snack - Having some protein-rich, healthful snacks in your car, office, or purse can help you avoid blood sugar level dips and accompanying mood swings and fatigue. Trail mix, granola bars, and certain energy bars all contain good nutrition.


5. Healthy Munches- If you find that you absently munch when you're stressed, or have a pattern of snacking at certain times in the day or week, you can replace chips, cheese puffs and other less-healthy munchies with carrot sticks, edamame, celery sticks, sunflower seeds or other more healthy choices.


Reference:


Scott, E. (2007). Good Nutrition: How to Combat Stress with Good Nutrition. About. com. Retrieved, November 7, 2007.


Next week are the last "Ten Ways to Assure Better Nutrition"!


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We are all under a lot of stress lately, but stress can sometimes lead to unhealthy lifestyle patterns, which in turn can cause more stress. This stress can also make us choose poor food choices. If you feel that stress has affected your food choice, then you may want to ask yourself this: When I am feeling overwhelmed, what do I find myself doing? Below is a list of some of the following things that you may see yourself doing:


  • Drinking Too Much Coffee: People often find themselves using coffee drinks to jump-start themselves in the morning. But when stress arrives some people can start a pattern of all-day coffee drinking often starts.


  • Eating The Wrong Foods: Increase levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, causes stressed people tend to crave foods high in fat, sugar and salt. Ask yourself about this: How often have you turned to your favorite chocolate chip cookies after a long stressful day?


  • Skipping Meals: Have you ever found yourself rushing out of the house without a healthy breakfast or realizing you're starving in the late afternoon because you didn't eat enough?


  • Mindless Munching: Stress makes us prone to emotional eating, when we eat when we aren't aren't hungry, or eat foods that are bad for us. Have you found yourself mindless snacking on junk food, or eating when you aren't hungry, because of stress?


  • Forgetting Water: Alot of people have busy lives and can easily forget to drink your water. A good amount of Americans are no drinking any water and get water only from soda and coffee. Are you drinking eight full glasses per day or ever four glasses?


  • Fast Food: It is so easy to just drive through a fast food place or go to a restaurant than to go home and cook something. People these days eat at home less than in generations past. These types of foods can get expensive and become unhealthy.


  • Crash Diets: Because of weight gain from stress, some people intentionally eat less food than they need, or try dangerous fad diets in order to lose the excess weight. Diets that aren't balanced with fruits and vegetables, protein and healthy carbohydrates can often be bad for your health in the long run, even if they look attractive short term.


There are several things you can do to make healthy choices and not use food to help relieve stress. Next week, I will discuss 10 Ways to Assure Better Nutrition!


What do you do when you are stress out?


#nutrition #livinghealthy #deninerogers #stress #coffee #fastfood #stressmanagement #forgettingwater #skippingmeals #mindlessmunching #crashdiet #wrongfoods


References:


Scott, E. (2007). Stress management. Stress and Nutrition: The Link between Stress and Nutrition Deficiencies. Retrieved February, 3, 2010.


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