If you’re feeling a little bit off, the perfect remedy could be right there in your kitchen cupboard (and no, it’s not the M&Ms!)
Not feeling like your amazing self? Maybe you’ve felt a little tired lately or have an upset stomach - whatever the reason, it’s time to get your health back on track. Rikki Hodge chatted to naturopath Kathleen McFarlane for the best cures to come out of your pantry.
You're feeling anxious
When this happens: Your bestie texted you saying she’s mad at you and you have no idea why. Now you’re super stressed and your anxiety levels are higher than the waist of your cute new cut-offs.
Try this: “Sip on herbal teas such as lemon balm or chamomile,” says Kathleen. “They will help calm your nervous system.” Then make sure your next few meals are protein-based, as Kathleen says this will keep your blood glucose levels in check and reduce a bad mood.“
Food to eat when you’re stressed: Tuna or salmon, avocado, carrots and hummus.
Your tummy is bloated
When this happens: You’re sitting in class when you notice the waistband on your skirt is tighter than usual. It’s probably down to bloating. It can hurt, and make you feel tired. Instead of thinking your stomach will combust, you could…
Try this: “Ginger or peppermint tea may help if there's pain or nausea,” says Kathleen. “You may also benefit from digestive enzymes, which are in pineapple cores and papaya. If it’s an ongoing issue, have a chat to your doctor or naturopath about the foods that might be triggering your bloating.
Food to eat when you’re bloated: Greek yoghurt and watermelon.
When this happens: You had a fun sleepover with your friends but it left you pretty tired the next day… yet that didn’t stop you from secretly watching Pretty Little Liars reruns until way too late. Now it’s Monday morning and you’re so tired you can barely function.
Try this: “Ensure you are hydrated, as fatigue is often worsened by dehydration,” says Kathleen. “Consider foods high in B vitamins, as well as those rich in iron, such as nuts, seeds, lentils, baked beans and hummus.” Kathleen also advises not to reach for anything sugary because it’ll just mess around with your energy levels.
Food to eat when you’re tired: Kale, spinach, green tea and red meat.
You can't concentrate
When this happens: You’ve just been told the essay you were slacking off on is worth half your overall mark! It's time to get started, but you can't focus. Instead of reaching for a cup of coffee, try a natural alternative.
Try this: “Eggs are high in protein and rich in choline, which is important for brain function,” says Kathleen. “Herbal teas like ginkgo biloba have also been shown to support memory and improve circulation to the brain.” Kathleen adds that high zinc foods and herbs like rosemary aid concentration, but the key to focusing is a good sleep!
Foods to eat to boost concentration: Pumpkin and sesame seeds , fish oil capsules (check with your GP before grabbing these) and blueberries.