Fox Good Day Chicago: Stress-Fighting Foods

 Stress might as well be a four-letter word because it causes SO much nastiness inside of our bodies! Not only does it boost inflammation that can lead to chronic disease (boo!) but it also depletes us of our happy vibes, lowers our immunity, causes bloat in the belly, and can interrupt our focus.  APL has a few nutrient-dense meal examples for you to enjoy to battle the stress you come across veryday.

Crunchy Tuna Salad Sandwich: raw, unsalted sunflower seeds added to a dish like this pack a happy punch. Sunflower seeds are a good source of Folate; which helps your body produce a pleasure-inducing brain chemical called dopamine not to mention Tryptophan, which brings on smile-inducing serotonin. We paired that with our fave organicgirl Super Spinach lettuce mix available at my fave Mariano’s that’s loaded with magnesium.  There’s a reason Popeye loved his spinach! Magnesium promotes energy and improves your body’s response to stress.

  • 1 slice whole grain or sprouted bread, toasted
  • organic hummus, spread on the bread
  • 4 cucumber slices
  • 1 organic tomato slice
  • heaping handful of organic baby spinach
  • ¼ cup APL crunchy tuna salad (1/4 cup all white tuna, 1 TB organic Dijon mustard, 1 TB raw & unsalted sunflower seeds, sea salt & black pepper)
  • microgreens or radish sprouts, to top

Blueberries on top of Whole Grain Blueberry Waffles: blueberries are full of antioxidants that eradicate the inflammatory effects of stress hormones like cortisol on your body, especially around the belly. I top my quickly-prepped whole grain blueberry breakfast waffles by Van’s Simply Delicious (free of all of the main allergens,) with even more organic blueberries to pack a serious antioxidant punch!

Spicy Salmon Salad: wild salmon is rich in omega-3’s and research shows that these fatty acids can help reverse stress symptoms by boosting serotonin evels, and that an omega-3–rich diet can also help suppress the production of cortisol. I blend my salmon with some Sriracha sauce and serve it over mixed  greens, topping it all off with a dressing made with cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil.  Olive oil is a natural anti-inflammatory agent that can reduce stress hormones in the body.

Rishi Teas: I brought in two teas by my fave, Rishi, because they are made with 100% organic ingredients and have fantastic flavor. Their Matcha Super Green is a unique organic Japanese green tea that combines sencha, a traditional steamed green tea, with matcha, a green tea powder that is made by stone-milling tea leaves. This green tea contains the antioxidant, L-theanine, which gives you an amino acid boost. I also brought their Turmeric-Ginger tea because ginger is calming to the tummy and urermic is touted as an herb that lowers your blood pressure-what happens when we’re stressed to the max? Our blood pressure rises! So sip this naturally caffeine-free herbal blend for its flavor AND it’s anti-inflammatory properties.