Have you been feeling a little restless lately? Can’t seem to focus on the present and in constant worry about the future? If this seems like a normal and recurring thing for you, you might be suffering from anxiety.
You might think that it is not a big deal in the beginning, but it can get worse with time. Anxiety is one of the major causes of sleep deprivation. It keeps your mind running by worrying about things and not letting you sleep.
To finally get the sleep you need and deserve, the best thing you can do is carry out a few lifestyle changes that can help you manage your anxiety. The easiest solution to this would be to make a few changes in your diet.
Try adopting and maintaining a healthy and balanced diet. Good thing is that there are plenty of foods that can help you in reducing your anxiety. If you want to put an end to your mental struggle, keep reading this article.
But first, it’s important for you to get a deeper understanding of what anxiety really is and the effects it has on your health. So, let’s get straight to it!
What Is Anxiety?
Anxiety, in simpler words, is fear of the unknown or of what is going to happen. It is the feeling that prevents you from feeling at ease. Now feeling anxious is totally normal. In fact, if you didn’t feel anxious, you’d never sense danger as easily as you do now.
Anxiety is considered to be a problem when it starts to last for longer than usual. When anxiety starts feeling like your permanent state of mind, that’s when it becomes a disorder.
It starts interfering with your daily life and tasks. At times, it might even keep you from enjoying life.
The Food You Eat And The Mood It Breeds
Your diet has a huge impact on your mood and how you feel most of the time. There must’ve been times in your life when a hot bowl of noodles or dumplings instantly made you feel better. Hence, diet plays a major role in the way you feel.
Your gastrointestinal tract contains bacteria which affects the production of chemical substances. These substances carry messages or signals to your brain from your gut.
Thus, consuming healthy food will help the “good” bacteria and will then help produce those chemical substances.
If you try to relieve anxiety through the means of food, you might adopt and maintain a healthy diet, stay hydrated, etc. Consuming vegetables, fruits, and whole grains might help.
8 Foods That Can Ease Your Anxiety
We are what we eat, must’ve heard that as a kid. In that case, you should eat something that makes you feel happy, less anxious, and is healthy. To help you out with that, here are is a list of foods that have proven to be effective in reducing anxiety:
If you need a reason to eat fish, here’s one! Salmon reduces anxiety as it contains vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and eicosapentaenoic acid. All of these nutrients promote good brain health in various ways.
Vitamin D helps boost the levels of calming neurotransmitters, which helps you feel relaxed and less anxious. EPA and DPA also regulate the serotonin and dopamine neurotransmitters, which further induce calmness and relaxation.
Not only that, but the fatty acids found in salmon can also minimize the inflammation to an extent—the same inflammation which causes brain cell dysfunction that often results in the development of various mental issues.
A study found that the people who consumed salmon thrice a week were less anxious than those who didn’t. Keeping this in mind, incorporating a few servings of salmon in your weekly menu might prove to be beneficial for you and your mental health.
2. Brazil Nuts
If munchies are your thing, you’ll be glad to know that eating nuts can be therapeutic. The same is the case with Brazilian nuts. Brazilian nuts contain good amounts of selenium, a trace mineral that can reduce inflammation and has been associated with anxiety.
Brazil nuts not only improve your mood but are also extremely healthy. However, Too much consumption of Brazil nuts can be harmful as high selenium levels are not too good for your body. Thus, limit your consumption to only 3 to 4 nuts daily.
Eggs are versatile and are easy to cook. Surprisingly, they help in reducing anxiety as well. They contain high levels of vitamin D, protein, and essential amino acids. Eggs contain tryptophan, an amino acid vital in the production of serotonin in your body.
4. Dark Chocolate
Whenever we consume chocolate, our mood tends to get uplifted. While there’s still not enough evidence to pinpoint how chocolates uplift our mood, one study suggests that flavonoids help in minimizing brain cell death and brain inflammation.
Flavonoids are abundant in dark chocolates. Dark chocolates also have magnesium, a mineral known to reduce anxiety or depression symptoms.
Avocado is not only delicious, but it’s also nutritious. The main reason why it’s included in this list is because of the high amount of vitamin B it contains. All types of vitamin B have a significant impact on our nervous system.
Vitamin B6, in particular, aids the body in producing serotonin, the happy hormone. High levels of this hormone can improve your mood. Along with that, it is also rich in fats, which also positively affects our mental and emotional health.
Do you usually feel sleepy after feasting on a turkey every Thanksgiving? Well, you can blame tryptophan for that. Along with making you feel a little drowsy, it also helps in serotonin production. Due to these reasons, you should include turkey in your regular menu.
You must know yogurt is good for digestion. But what you might not be aware of is it’s also good for your mental health. A study has established a relationship between probiotic foods and social anxiety.
The best type of yogurt for you to consume would be Greek yogurt. This is because it contains high amounts of live and active probiotic cultures.
Do you know why most people drink chamomile tea before going to bed? That’s because chamomile has calming effects and can help induce sleep. Moreover, studies have shown that chamomile can also lower the severity of anxiety and depression symptoms.
Anxiety is a crippling disease, and it can have a huge negative impact on your life. Seeking help for an anxiety disorder is nothing to be ashamed of and if you suffer from it, own it and get help for it. Adding the above foods into your diet can help in reducing your anxiety.
I hope that these foods provide you with a bit of relief from anxiety. Till then, healthy eating and happy living!