The 8 Foods Nutritionists Use to Relieve Stress (and How to Cook with Them)

Nutrition is intrinsic to maintaining proper physical and mental health. "Foods that are highly acidic can make us feel sluggish, tired, and drained of energy—even after a good night's sleep—but certain foods can also increase feelings of anxiety," according to Daryl Gioffre, celebrity nutritionist and author of Get Off Your Acid. "Conversely, eating foods that are alkaline-forming will remove toxins from your body, lower insulin and inflammation, and increase energy and your happy, feel-good hormones," he explains.

Although it's tempting to reach for comfort food during stressful times, foods and drinks that may make you feel better in the moment can actually cause more stress on the body, Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN of Nutritious Life explains. She suggests avoiding overly processed foods that contain large amounts of sugar and salt, highly caffeinated drinks like coffee and soda, and alcohol, especially when you're already feeling stressed out, as they can increase the production of cortisol (a stress hormone) and cause unnecessary strain on the body while digesting and metabolizing.

"The quality of the choices you make in regards to the foods you eat will absolutely determine the quality of your energy, your health, and your body's ability to ward off stress," Gioffre states. In order to fuel your body with what it needs to fight free-radicals and acidity caused by stress, there are a few foods that both Gioffre and Glassman recommend you incorporate in your diet. Ahead, learn eight recipes that relieve stress thanks to their healthy, nutritionist-approved ingredients.

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