Control wedding planning stress through food

06 Oct 2017

Nutritionist Jenna Hope shares her top tips for controlling stress ahead of the big day through food

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Planning a wedding on top of your already exhausting daily routine can be draining and stressful. However, picking smarter food choices can help control your stress, contribute to your healthy glow and ensure that wedding planing is as productive and effective as possible. Jenna Hope (ANutr) is a registered nutritionist and here, she shares her top nutrition tips to help you prevent a stressful roller-coaster.

1. Reduce your sugar intake

Low energy levels leave you reaching for a high sugar snack. High sugar foods spike your blood glucose, providing you with a quick energy burst and leaving you feeling more exhausted two hours later.

To prevent these spikes, opt for snacks high in fibre, protein and healthy fats to keep you fuller for longer. Try hummus and vegetables, oat cakes with peanut butter, a handful of almonds or Greek yoghurt with cinnamon and berries.

Chronic high sugar intakes can contribute to obesity and diabetes; in accordance with smarter snacking, try reducing the sugar in your tea and coffee and pick low sugar breakfasts including eggs, porridge topped with cinnamon and berries or rye toast with avocado and smoked salmon.

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2. Be mindful of your fluid intake

Ensuring adequate water intake is essential. Often caffeinated drinks are counted as part of our fluid intake yet caffeine actually contributes to dehydration. Limit your caffeinated drinks to two a day and opt for herbal teas to replace the extras.

I advise you carry a large water bottle around to ensure you hit your two litres a day. Staying hydrated will keep you more alert, make wedding planning more effective and reduce the risk of over-eating. It’s common to over-eat as a we can mistake thirst for hunger.

If you struggle to drink water, add fruit to the bottle to boost the flavour. Staying hydrated will also contribute to your healthy glow for the big day.

3. Remember the forgotten nutrient

Magnesium often gets forgotten. The key to managing stress is supporting your adrenal glands which are responsible for cortisol secretion (the stress hormone). Magnesium also plays a role in muscle relaxation and cell production. If possible, bathe in epsom salts once a week as magnesium is better absorbed through your skin. Also, consume magnesium rich foods: whole grains, nuts and seeds, green leafy vegetables, fish and dark chocolate (it really does have health benefits) are ideal sources.

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4. Look after your gut

With good reason, gut health has recently gained more attention. Stress can negatively impact your gut bacteria which can cause weight gain, digestive dysfunction and inflammation. Support your gut via a range of probiotic foods including yoghurt, kefir, sourdough bread and prebiotic foods including onions, garlic, apples, oats, apple cider vinegar and fermented vegetables.

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There you have my top tips for controlling stress ahead of the big day. Don’t try and accomplish everything at once, start with one focus and build up gradually. Remember, food should be enjoyable so be wary that eating well doesn’t become another stressor.

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