Stress Management – The Diet Route!


Since stress is considered more of a psychological issue, not many are aware that diet can play a significant role in stress management. Certain kinds of foods magnify the physical symptoms of stress while others alleviate physical manifestations of stress.

Ayurveda, the ancient Indian medical science, states that the food that we eat has a critical role to play in the manner in which the mind and body functions. Certain foods cause more stress while others relax the mind and body. Therefore, it is obvious that certain foods should be avoided during stress and some that should be consumed more than others.

Foods to be Avoided During Stress

Sugar and Sweets

Sugar is nothing but empty calories and is processed immediately after its ingested, giving an immediate boost to the adrenal glands. Hence you feel good after having sweets. However, what you must realize is that this taxes the adrenal glands as they are already over-worked. Its like putting them on steroids. Also, being empty in calories, our body has to use enzymes, vitamins and minerals from its savings account to process the sugar. Over a period of time, a diet rich in sugar, drains the body off vitamins and minerals and makes it weak and more susceptible to stress.


Another food that causes the adrenalin glands to work hard is caffeine. Caffeine is present in coffee, tea and colas and given the high amounts of these beverages that we consume, stress levels are obviously higher in this generation as compared to the earlier ones.

Refined and Processed Foods

Highly processed foods like white flour (present in bread to a large extent) have nothing but empty calories and are void of nutrients. These refined foods do not have fiber too. This causes constipation and body cannot expel wastes and toxins efficiently.

To add to the irony of the situation, these processed foods are first stripped of the nutrients and vitamins and then later artificially fortified to attract consumers who are looking for better and healthy products. It is far more beneficial to have natural and whole foods so as to retain the natural nutrients that are part of nature’s design.

Foods to be Favored

A high nutritive diet is what the body needs to fight stress. Whole foods like whole wheat, oats, whole grains, fruits, vegetables are what you should include as part of your diet. Make sure that these fruits and vegetables are not processed and canned ones but fresh and raw. Fruits and vegetables contain a fair amount of fiber and therefore help in easy elimination of toxins and waste products. They also take more time to digest, and hence release energy slowly and steadily, compared to short bursts in energy associated with junk foods. As a result you don’t feel hungry in between meals and your energy level in constant throughout.

We are what we eat. By changing our perspective to nourishing our body than satisfying our taste buds, we can go a long way is building a healthy and stress-free body.

About The Author

Vishal P. Rao provides authentic tips, techniques and resources to manage stress on his site Guide to Stress Management

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