This member of the carrot family delivers an astounding amount of stress-busting nutrients like flavonoids, a type of antioxidant found in plants that protect against free-radical damage (which are the result of stress) and vitamins A and C. Your body will thank you for all of the protective powers it provides.
To de-stress: Add a handful to your next smoothie. Trust us, it’s more delicious than you think!
The phytonutrients in strawberries that give this sweet fruit their vibrant color are antioxidants that help control stress-related inflammation.
To de-stress: For a quick treat, try a strawberry and rasberry granita
Like tuna, wild caught salmon (as opposed to farmed) is high in omega-3 fatty acids, which contribute to a healthy mood and optimal brain function. Try eating more salmon to keep your cognitive abilities sharp and your attitude positive as you battle the week ahead.
To de-stress: Again, just four ounces of this brain food will do.
These small fatty fish are a wonderful source of brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids, says Ross. Plus, it’s just a handy protein to have in the pantry.
To de-stress: Spoon some of the fish on a cracker and season with freshly ground black pepper and a little cayenne for an appetizer.
Also known as holy basil, tulsi tea is revered in India and touted for its many medicinal and nutritive properties. Several studies show that it can decrease stress hormones and corticosteroids, lower levels of which are associated with improved mental clarity and memory, says Chris Kilham, an ethnobotanist at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.
To de-stress: Steep a teabag for two to five minutes and sip, either hot or cold. Enjoy 2 to 4 cups for optimal benefits.
High in omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins and magnesium (all of which support metabolism, reduce stress and improve mood), walnuts provide excellent nutrition for the brain,” says Arthur.
To de-stress: Mix a quarter cup of walnuts into a salad or cereal for additional texture and brain-boosting power.
This white meat is a good source of l-tryptophan, the precursor to serotonin and a “feel good” hormone responsible for promoting restful, rejuvenating sleep and fending off depression and suboptimal moods.
To de-stress: Roast 4 ounces of organic or free-range turkey and slice up for sandwiches or salads.
Grass-fed and organic beef is both high in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats and zinc. When it’s lean, it’s a great source of low-fat protein.
To de-stress: Sauté 4 ounces of ground beef with onions, spoon it onto some lettuce and wrap it up for a protein-rich, low-carb “taco”
Often maligned as artery-clogging and cholesterol-rich, eggs are full of nutrients like vitamins, minerals and good fats -- all of which help release endorphins (the brain’s chemicals that “amplify pleasure and make pain more tolerable,” according to Ross).
To de-stress: Poach, fry, scramble or boil one or two eggs for a healthy protein boost any time of day.
This mild cheese is high in calcium, protein and the amino acid tryptophan, which promotes healthy serotonin and endorphin levels, says Ross. Plus, it’s super filling so it’ll keep your waistline happy too.
To de-stress: Pair 4 ounces cottage cheese with berries or pineapples for a satisfying meal or snack.