Living a life without stress will bring you better relationships with the people you love and a more positive outlook on your living. For centuries, many cultures have tried natural remedies and herbs to help combat the stress, so why can’t you too. You can naturally lower your anxiety and cortisol levels by following some advice linked to your nutrition.

Cortisol is an important component of life. It is helpful when you have to deal with some life-threatening situations. When cortisol levels spike, glucose is released from the liver, amino acids from the muscles, and fatty acids flow in the blood stream, therefore we get the needed energy to deal with these situations.

However, with time, the stress response is provoked for all the wrong reasons (by drinking coffee, driving in traffic, reading the news etc.).As a result of that our organs suffer. The effects of stress to our body are endless. It ages us, makes us gain weight, promotes diabetes and heart disease, damages the immune system, promotes GI tract diseases, elevates depression and mood swings and contributes to insomnia and fatigue.

Nutrition has a great role in helping you lower your anxiety and cortisol levels. Below is a list of 7 plant-based remedies that can help you combat the effects of stress:

Holy basil

7 plant-based remedies

This herb is known as an adaptogenic herb. It helps the body better adapt to stress. Holy basil reduces the stress hormones and promotes the way our body responds and reacts and to stress. You can eat fresh basil or use it in tea-based form.

Spinach

Spinach contains magnesium, which balances cortisol production in the organism. Magnesium is a mineral that calms the nervous system and prevents the production of excess cortisol. Include spinach in juices and smoothies as an efficient stress-reducer.

Bananas

These sweet fruits are rich in tryptophan, an essential amino acid, which becomes converted to serotonin in our brain and makes us stress-free and happy. Bananas are also rich in B vitamins, which are crucial for nervous system support and calmer moods.

Micro-greens and Leafy Greens

Infusing our bodies with minerals, vitamins and phytonutrients, the reaction to stress is much lower. This is why micro-greens and leafy greens, should always be included in your daily diet. Some studies show that micro-greens contain 4-6 times more stress-fighting vitamin C.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Flaxseeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, cauliflower and brussels sprouts all of them are rich in cortisol lowering and inflammation-busting omega-3 fatty acids. They help the hippocampus to react to excess cortisol. Include these brilliant stress-fighting superfoods in your nutrition by adding them to your cereals or smoothies, or use them as a healthy snack.

Zinc-Rich Foods

Foods high in zinc can help suppress the secretion of cortisol in your body. Zinc is also important for immune health and bones. It is found in pumpkin seeds, lentils, peas, sesame seeds, garbanzo beans, quinoa, cashews, hemp seeds, walnuts, almonds, chia seeds and broccoli.

Berries

Berries are important for supplying your body with healthful antioxidants. Antioxidants play a crucial role in helping slow cortisol production and reducing inflammation. They are a defence system of our bodies against cell damage created by free radicals, and can help us fight stress. Make yourself an antioxidant-rich smoothie with different berries or just enjoy them as a delicious snack.