5 foods that can keep your mental health in check in the times of pandemic

A picture depicting a nutritious salad

The Covid 19 pandemic is taking a toll – not just on the world economic operations and markets, but also on our mental health. As administrations across the globe rush to shut down activities in order to contain further infections, many of us are left all by ourselves, locked up inside our own homes, virtual communication being the only feasibility.

Although many are engaging a lot more with various social media sites, others reading or maybe learning new languages or skills in order to keep their minds occupied, yet there are several suffering from bouts of anxiety, that’s ultimately having an adverse impact on their well-being. 

Eating habits too seem to have gone through a major alteration, with insubstantial availability of dailies, leaving little or no room for fancy foods. Well then, is it the right time to innovate? Why not?

A recent article published by Harvard Medical School, shows studies to have found that people on a “traditional” diet like the typical Mediterranean or Japanese one tend to have 25% - 35% lower risk of stress or depression compared to those on a “Western” diet , stressing on the importance of balanced nutrition. But, healthy habits too can get wearisome at times! So, here’s the list of 5 such dishes that will satisfy both your fettle and pangs:

Mushroom and Lettuce Whole-wheat Sandwich

Clichéd as it might sound, but this can really turn out to be a game-changer! Toss the mushrooms in a spoonful of butter with a pinch of salt and leave it to rest. Next, take two slices of whole-wheat (known as whole-meal at times) bread, and place two halves of a lettuce leaf on each. Add a spoonful of mayo before sprinkling on the tossed mushrooms, and there you go! Simple. Healthy. Delicious!

Frittata with Tomato & Spinach Salad

Frittatas are often regarded as guilty indulgences, but listening to your heart once in a while is pretty much alright (especially when in quarantine)! Cook the frittatas sans meat – you can add vegetables like broccolis, carrots and bell peppers instead. In a separate pan, toss up a handful of cherry tomatoes with a cup of spinach. Use olive oil as the base and add salt and black pepper to taste. Pair it up with some Ciabatta or Dinner Roll and savor up your feelings!

Grilled Chicken in Onion Sauce

Now, that might have roused some interest!? Well, its grilled chicken with a twist! Create the gravy using finely chopped spring onions alongside a decent competency of ginger-garlic paste, tomato sauce, salt, cheese and honey. Add the chicken breasts once you’re done with the gravy (make sure of a smooth consistency) and set it to be grilled. The results will definitely leave you asking for more!

Chocolate Porridge

See, I got you intrigued! Well, why should this breakfast staple be limited to its copybook definition? It’s time to wake up the creative genius in you! Add about 75g of cocoa powder and 30g honey to 350ml milk and 50g oats. Follow the usual path (simmer and keep stirring from time to time) for 5 minutes and you’re done! Top it with some freshly sliced bananas and apples, and thank me later.

Fresh Fruit Siesta

Well, that’s one dish that you can mop up at any hour and with minimal effort. Add 400ml milk in a pan and boil it to half. Pour it carefully into a large mixing bowl and add chopped slices of all your favorite fruits – be it strawberries, apples, papayas, grapes, bananas, raspberries, and refrigerate it for an hour and a half. There you have – taste and health in the same bowl.

So, now you have got another reason to keep yourself engaged during these tough times! Beat the stress of being by yourself with these quick and effortless recipes and keep your state of mind free from the blues. On that note, wishing everyone stays safe, and remember, we’ll get over this real soon!