The holiday season can be a wonderful time filled with family, parties and pending travel plans. While the crisp fall air, rosy cheeks and pumpkin treats are a welcome change of the seasons, for many, the holiday season can also be a stressful time because uh, hello, it’s filled with families, parties, and pending travel plans.
What you eat during times of stress can really impact your mood and energy. Don’t let your plate make you a party pooper – incorporate these five nutrient dense foods in your daily eating repertoire to help keep you healthy, happy and stress-free this holiday season.
High in fiber, potassium and Vitamin B, avocados are a fantastic nutrient rich addition for breakfast, lunch, dinner or snack to keep you full and energetic all day. Avocados are high in monounsaturated fat (that’s the good kind!), which has been shown to lower cholesterol, help control blood sugar and reduce blood pressure. Not to mention they’re a great source of fuel for our bodies as we’re on the go.
2. Collard Greens
Collard Greens are part of the cruciferous family and provide antioxidants that support the body’s natural ability to detox unwanted toxins. High in Vitamin K, which helps fight inflammation, and Vitamin A, which supports our immune system, collard greens can aid in combating the negative side effects of chronic stress on our bodies.
3. Pumpkin Seeds
If you have some pumpkins lying around the house, feel free to break into one and roast some of the seeds (or just grab some at the store) to get beneficial minerals like zinc for increased immune function and iron to help boost energy production. Sprinkle them in your salads for a crunchy addition or just much on them for an easy snack!
4. Brussels Sprouts
Do you know that one cup of Brussels sprouts gives us over 125% of our daily needs for Vitamin C? Vitamin C is a super important nutrient because it helps protect our bodies from free radicals (molecules that damage our cells and tissues) and allows our bodies to make certain neurotransmitters that keep our immune system, digestive system and endocrine system working optimally.
Aside from being high in protein, chicken is a fantastic source of all of the different B vitamins, especially B3 which is essential to produce energy. Chicken also is high in the mineral selenium, which supports the thyroid and is therefore particularly helpful during times of stress.