Tips to Reduce Stress: How Exercise and Nutrition Help Relieve Stress

Guest Contributor
Jan 23, 2011

Modern research shows that exercise and nutrition can help reduce stress and anxiety attacks. Most of us get stressed easily in this modern society, and part of the blame goes to lack of exercise and awareness of importance of healthy food. In this article, we have some tips to decrease your stress levels and help you become a happier person:

How to reduce stress naturally

1. Regular Exercise

Exercise does not have to be weightlifting at a gym. You can walk briskly for about 30 minutes in a park or near your neighborhood, or you can jump on a trampoline at your house for an hour. Regardless of the form of exercise, the body will release feel-good hormones called endorphins. Endorphins make you feel happy. Exercise will also improve your sleep which in turn will help reduce anxiety attacks and depression.

2. Yoga

Yoga helps bring peace through the unity of body and mind. Whether you meditate for several minutes or stretch in yoga poses, yoga will help you focus on positive thoughts and bring out the good energy in your body. Breathing techniques in yoga will bring relaxation and deliver additional oxygen to the body and brain. This helps to reduce both physical and psychological stress.

3. Omega 3 from Fish Oil or Walnuts

Deficiency of omega 3 in the diet causes stress. Several double-blind placebo controlled trials have showed that people with deficiency of omega 3 are at a greater risk of both clinical depression and inflammatory disease. If the level of omega 3 increases in the blood, the body is more likely to make the feel-good hormones called serotonin. The easiest way to correct omega 3 deficiency is by taking fish oil or krill oil every day. Alternatively, you can eat an omega 3 rich diet which consists of plenty of seafood such as salmon and sardines, and healthy nuts such as walnuts and cashew.

4. Vitamin B Complex

Supplementing with vitamin B complex vitamin supplement helps reduce stress, increase your energy level, and improve your sleep patterns. The vitamin B-complex refers to water-soluble vitamins that include thiamine (vitamin B1), riboflavin (vitamin B2), niacin (vitamin B3), pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), pyridoxine (Vitamin B6), biotin, folic acid, and cobalamins (vitamin B12). Deficiency in vitamin B1 may cause fatigue and irritability; deficiency in vitamins B2, B3, B5 and biotin may cause depression; and deficiency in vitamin B6 may cause nervousness and irritability. Research shows that B vitamins can help recover from alcohol withdrawal symptoms, reduce stress and anxiety and offer several other health benefits. Although B complex supplements can be cheaply bought at any grocery store, you may have to do additional research online to find quality vitamins.

5. Whole Grains, Natural Fruits and Vegetables

Several other vitamins, minerals and enzymes in fruits and vegetables help alleviate the symptoms of stress and depression. Eating complex carbohydrates from whole grains and minimizing intake of processed carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta and sugar-rich snacks will help stabilize the mood by balancing the blood sugar level. Also, eating complex carbohydrates from whole grains will provide you additional nutrition value. If the brain is not getting good nutrition, then it will be stressed and show depression symptoms.

The ideas mentioned above will work for any household or individual on a budget. Exercise and yoga does not have to cost anything other than your time. While krill oil is more expensive, fish oil can be bought for under $10 at any grocery store or pharmacy without a prescription. Similarly, a month supply of B complex vitamins can be bought for under $10 at these stores. Eating whole grains, fruits and vegetables can be done easily. If you eat out and choose salads and fruits for lunch, the meal will be relatively inexpensive. These ideas will not only help relieve stress but also bring several other unexpected health benefits.

(The information in this article reflects the opinion of the writer and not the opinion of This article is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical or nutritional advice. The reader should always consult his or her healthcare provider or nutritionist to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation.)

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