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Stress Beating Meals

By: Leigh Sexton - Updated: 26 Mar 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Stress Beating Meals

Some foods can make us feel good, and some make us feel bad, but few people realise that certain foods can actually reduce our stress levels. Here are some recipes for tasty stress-dampening dishes to leave you calm, happy and full of good food.

A true stress destroying combination is whole-grain pasta with a big serving of leafy green vegetables. It’s a dish that blends complex carbohydrates of whole wheat, containing a high level of healthy fibre, with the vitamins, minerals, and even more good fibre in leafy green veggies to encourage our bodies to release serotonin which is a feel-good compound created by our brains to allow us to relax and hone our mental focus. Spinach, in particular contains high levels of magnesium which actually works to reduce stress levels – research shows that a deficiency of magnesium may trigger migraine headaches and make many people feel tired, but 70% of the population are not eating enough magnesium. A large handful of spinach contains nearly half your daily magnesium allowance, so enjoying a pasta and spinach supper can help you sleep well and start the next day with a smile.

Spinach Pasta Stress Buster

Ingredients

  • 500 grams wholewheat pasta
  • 50 grams fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 finely minced garlic clove
  • 225 grams fresh spinach, washed
  • 200 ml tub half-fat crème fraîche or sour cream
  • Seasoning

Method

Preheat the grill to medium and toast the breadcrumbs on a baking tray and grill for two or three minutes, watching constantly and stirring until they are toasted. Pour into a large bowl and stir to cool slightly.

Boil a pan of lightly salted water and cook the pasta in line with packet instructions. Drain it and return to the warm pan, with the lemon zest and garlic. Season and then stir the spinach and crème fraîche into the pasta until the spinach wilts.

Stir half the breadcrumbs into the mixture and taste to check seasoning before spooning into bowls and sprinkling the rest of the breadcrumbs over the top of the bowls.

Oats

Complex carbohydrates help the brain produce serotonin, and the more slowly your body absorbs available carbohydrates, the more evenly this serotonin flows, keeping us calm over a longer period. Oats are also high in soluble fibre for heart health and cholesterol reduction.

Super Soothing Porridge

Ingredients

  • 500 ml water
  • 1 dessertspoon unrefined brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 75 grams whole or jumbo porridge oats
  • A good handful raisins or sultanas
  • 1 washed cored and sliced apple

Method

Put the water, brown sugar, cinnamon and syrup in a saucepan and bring to a boil. As it boils add the oats and reduce heat, cooking on low for around five minutes or until all the water has been taken up by the oats. Remove the pan from the from heat, stir in the apples and dried fruit and leave for two minutes for the fruit to soften and plump before serving.

Citrus Fruits

Vitamin C is a magic bullet nutrient for stress. When German researchers asked 120 people to take a public speaking test that included maths, the volunteers who had taken 3,000 milligrams of vitamin C reported that they felt less stressed. Monitoring showed that blood pressure and levels of cortisol, which is a hormone produced by stress, returned to normal more quickly in those volunteers too.

Serenity Smoothie

Nothing could be easier to prepare than a smoothie made with raspberries, bananas, and a peeled orange, whizzed with plain yogurt. All the fruits are good sources of magnesium as well as Vitamin C.

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Latest Comments
  • cgngjhg v
    Re: Types of Pastry
    what is the difference between flaky pastry and rough puff pastry
    20 June 2019
  • Rakel
    Re: Types of Pastry
    Pastry is kinda complicated but at some point it's under stood thanos for the information that helps us learn
    11 December 2018
  • Charlies daad left
    Re: Types of Pastry
    My dad left to the shop to get some pastry five years ago, has anyone seen him??
    6 December 2018
  • Mynanhasabbc
    Re: Types of Pastry
    MY NAN has some nice pastry if someone wants some
    6 December 2018
  • Ginny
    Re: How to Make Chutney
    I allowed my chutney to go cold before I put it in jars....will it compromise the taste or how long it will last?
    4 October 2018
  • sophie
    Re: Types of Pastry
    thank you very much this was very helpful THANK YOU SOOO MUCH
    28 September 2018
  • Ana
    Re: Types of Pastry
    It iz quite helpful 4r every hm student....
    17 September 2018
  • ValB
    Re: Types of Pastry
    @Mona - Would it be strudel puff pastry which is both sweet and spiced?
    10 September 2018
  • Mona
    Re: Types of Pastry
    I am trying to track down a pastry recipe for a a cinnamon pastry from my childhood. The pastry appeared to be rolled in one long piece and then in…
    10 September 2018
  • Kismet
    Re: Types of Pastry
    L like the pastry... Please may l have explanation on how to make sugar pastry
    3 September 2018