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Posted by Elizebath Bijoy Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Deanne Panday, who trains the bodies and minds of stars, has put her stress-fighting weapons in a book. Here's an excerpt on what foods you need to eat and avoid.
Stress is the silent killer that affects 50 per cent of the country's working population. Panday says it has a lot to do with the kind of food we eat.
The following excerpt from the book I'm not stressed, which has been endorsed by a bevy of Bolslywood stars, tells you what foods help you manage stress better and what don't. Read on to find out.

Foods that help you destress 
Certain food items in our diet can actually help reduce stress in our bodies. While apricots and greens like spinach replenish the body with magnesium, which is known to relax the muscles and help with headaches, nuts and dark vegetables like almonds, pistachios, broccoli, and okra are rich in vitamins B and E that help lower blood pressure. Citrus fruits, which are a storehouse for Vitamin C, also help in controlling blood pressure. Other food items like sweet potatoes provide insulin to the body, provide energy, and help deal with fatigue in a stressful situation. Below is a list of foods I recommend for stressed-out people:
- Low-fat dairy products like lowfat cottage cheese and cheese
- Cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, etc
- Nuts like almonds, pistachios, etc
- Decaf green tea or rosemary tea
- Dark coloured vegetables like beetroot, okra, and peas
- Beans or lentils
- Brown rice
- Oats
- Oily fish like salmon and tuna
- Lean beef
- Egg whites
- Chicken without the skin
- Asparagus
- Artichokes
- Sweet potatoes
- Leeks
- Watercress
- Sesame, sunflower, and flax seeds
- Also, drink lots of water, with a few squeezes of lime (lemon is a natural metabolizer)

Foods that aggravate your stress levels 
Certain food groups like caffeine, alcohol, and salty foods are known to aggravate stress in our bodies. Caffeine increases the production of norepinephrine, which keeps us alert and awake. These foods also interfere with our sleep and prevent us from relaxing. Alcohol can lower the amount of sugar in our blood and cause us to feel less energetic. It can also lead to an irregular heartbeat, which triggers panic attacks, among other things. Salty foods increase the blood pressure and makes us feel stressed.
Below is a list of foods you should avoid as much as possible especially during stressful days: - Hydrogenated fats: Some varieties of margerine, crackers, cookies, baked foods, bread
- Artifical flavour and colouring: Potato chips, chewing gum, some cereals, soft drinks
- Preservatives: Canned food and fruits, canned meats, pickles, butter, potato chips, baked goods, chocolate
- Glutamates: (MSG or Aginomoto) Soy and soy protein, canned tuna, powdered milk, dried and canned soups, flavoured chips, sauces, salad dressing, canned foods, soya sauce
- Artificial Sweeteners: Aspartame, saccharine, found in diet foods, sodas, chewing gum
- High-fructose corn syrup: Corn sweetner, corn syrup solids
- Packaged and processed foods: All canned foods, packed soups, cereals, bacon, sausages, cold cuts
- Sugar and sugary foods: Frozen desserts, donuts, pastries, candy, honey
- Foods with tannin: Wine, coffee, beer, maple and caramel flavouring
- Refined grain: White bread, white pasta, white rice, low fibre sugar cereal
- Sodium: Found in most processed foods, soups, soya sauce, canned foods, fast foods and preserved meats like ham and bacon
- Fats found in all fast food items like burgers, fish and chips, fries, etc.


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