Have you noticed that the days, weeks, months and years are flying by faster and faster? As we pack more and more into our lives, time seems to be slipping away at an alarming rate. This constant busy state we live in begs the question – at what toll is this rambunctious life having on our health?

Excess stress causes a wide range of problems, from fatigue, mood swings, irritability and sleep disturbances to skin disorders, a digestive system that plays up,  hormone problems and mental health issues. The problems are systemic, complex and self-perpetuating. So what can you do today to support your mind, body and soul? Well here we have a sample ‘Laugh with Health’ Anti-Stress day of eating that is rich in the nutrition your body needs to feel calm and balanced.

Breakfast

Watermelon juice or apple juice, both provide alkaline balance to the blood, plus melons are full of bromine, vital for emotional stability and also as an anti-depressant.

Tahini on toast, as tahini is full of magnesium (320mg/100g), the nerve mineral, plus calcium (330mg/100g) for the nerves and a peaceful sleep.

Nut butters on toast, provide B vitamins and magnesium. Vitamin B1: for nerves, B2: anti-stress, anti-fatigue, B3: nourishes the nerves, anti-depression, fatigue, B5: anti-stress, depression, B6: anti-stress, irritability, nervousness, and folate: nerves, brain, anti-fatigue. Most of these B vitamins are water soluble so you will need to eat sources of B vitamins  daily. A B complex tablet taken daily is usually very helpful.

Morning Tea

Try a handful of almonds – phosphorus (490mg/100g): strength and repair of nerves, improves concentration and memory; magnesium (260mg/100g): protects against hardened arteries and high blood pressure, and calcium (250mg/100g): regular heart action and digestion.

Have an apple or two peaches with the almonds.

Lunch

Salad sandwich: lettuce is an excellent source of silicon: (1500mg/100g) protects against nervous exhaustion, mental fatigue and baldness. Lettuce also supplies folate (15mg/100g): nerve functioning; sulphur (580mg/100g): brain functioning, and chlorine regulates blood pressure. Use some sliced red capsicum for an excellent supply of vitamin C, the anti-stress and headache vitamin.

Add a few walnuts rich in omega-3: nerve functioning, and biotin for sleep, anti-depression and nervousness, with a few slices of cheddar cheese (protein: nerve cell building, adrenaline production, brain hormone transfer) on rye bread for potassium (460mg/10g): strengthens the heart muscles and vital for mental function, nervous system and brain.

Afternoon snack

A handful of cashews with a cup of tea. Cashews are rich in zinc (5.7mg/100g): protects against fatigue and is required for the action of B vitamins and for mental alertness. Cashews are a good source of manganese (0.8mg/100g) required for memory; magnesium (250mg/100g); phosphorus (530mg/100g) for energy production, concentration, nerves and brain health.

Cashews and a crisp apple are the perfect nourishing nerve snack.

Evening Meal

Pepita Pasta: Add 4 tablespoons of ground pepitas to the pasta sauce, or sprinkle on top of the pasta with cheese. Pepitas  (pumpkin seeds) are an excellent source of iron (11.3mg/100g): protects against fatigue, promotes endurance and resistance to stress. Pepitas are also an excellent source of zinc 7.5mg/100g): required for the action of B vitamins, alcohol conversion and protection from fatigue and mental stress; magnesium (535mg/100g): controls the central nervous system, protects against mental exhaustion and irritability. Plus with the excellent balance of phosphorus (1174mg/100g): essential for the nervous system and brain function, as it promotes vitamin C absorption, protects the nerve fibres and promotes iron utilisation.

Add ground pepitas to a soup or vegetable burgers for the ultimate regenerating balance to the nervous system. Pepitas are wonderful anti-stress foods.

And there you have it!

[Extraction from Laugh with Health by Manfred Urs Koch. For more information head to www.laughwithhealth.com.au.]