Diet & Nutrition

Foods To Reduce Anxiety: 7 Foods that Help with Anxiety and Stress

Foods To Reduce Anxiety

Anxiety or panic attacks have become so common that every second individual is getting affected by this problem. Its symptoms vary from person to person. However, if someone is experiencing anxiety symptoms for more than six months or longer may have a GAD or Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

In all these situations of anxiety or panic attacks, people choose to take medicines for instant relief. Instead of taking lots of medicines to relax your mind, you should know about the right foods that nourish your body and stabilize your mental health for the long term.

Read on to learn more about some foods to reduce anxiety and help you to stabilize your mental health for the long term and others that soothe your mind in a panic situation:

List of 7 Foods to Reduce Anxiety

Dark Chocolates

Aren’t we all love chocolates even after knowing that, these are high in calories and low in nutritional value. However, not all chocolates are the same. Dark chocolates are known to be good in stressful situations or panic attacks. Dark chocolate is high in flavonols, which are antioxidants that benefit the mental health of a person.

Generally, if a person eats one or two pieces of dark chocolates, blood flow to the brain improves, and he manages to adapt to stressful situations. Ultimately, it becomes effective in dealing with anxiety and other mood disorders. A study suggests that persons who consumed 74% dark chocolate continuously for two weeks (2 times a day) have improved levels of stress hormones such as catecholamines and cortisol. It also increases the level of the neurotransmitter serotonin, which leads to stress and anxiety relief.

So, just go ahead and pamper yourself with a sweet treat !!

Herbal Tea or Green Tea

Since ancient times, people like to drink green tea and herbal tea like chamomile tea to soothe their tired and frayed nerves. A nice hot cup of any of these teas with some honey or cane sugar into it might give you immediate relief from anxiety and insomnia issues.

Both of these teas contain a high amount of antioxidants that lower the risk of stress and anxiety.

Green tea is a rich source of L-theanine, an amino acid, or a compound known to have positive effects on brain health and anxiety reduction. This compound also increases the level of certain hormones such as GABA, dopamine, and serotonin, neurotransmitters that show anti-anxiety effects. Moreover, green tea also contains an antioxidant called epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), which promotes brain health.

Chamomile extract has also shown the anti-anxiety effect. A study has found that people who were suffering from a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) experienced a more significant reduction in symptoms after consuming a cup of chamomile tea than those who had not. Another research study proved that regular consumption of chamomile extract for eight weeks could help to maintain the symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Fatty Fish

Some fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel, sardines, or trout, contain a high amount of omega-3. Omega-3-rich foods are known to be suitable for stable mental health. These food contain alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), which provide two essential fatty acids – eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). But according to a study, people who consume a high amount of omega-6 but not enough omega-3 may increase their risk of developing more issues of anxiety or panic attacks.

Among all these fatty fishes, Salmon fish is a rich source of vitamin D, which helps to calm neurotransmitters. Even researchers have observed that a few servings of salmon in a week promote enough anxiety relief.

Turmeric

The Indian spice turmeric, which has used for cooking purposes, has too many other health benefits. It has an active ingredient called curcumin, having powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Due to this, turmeric helps to lower anxiety by reducing oxidative stress. Moreover, curcumin also can reduce inflammatory hormones, such as cytokines, which leads to anxiety development.

According to a 2015 study, mostly curcumin reduces anxiety in obese adults. Another study found an increased level of curcumin in the diet leads to increased DHA, which ultimately reduces stress.

You can easily add turmeric to your meals. And it also goes well in smoothies, curries, and casserole dishes.

Yogurt

Yogurt contains a lot of good bacteria, such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria. These bacteria and fermented products have positive effects, not only on our mental health but also on our immune system. Yogurt and other fermented food such as cheese, sauerkraut, kimchi, and fermented soy products in the diet can lead to the further natural growth of the gut bacteria, which helps to reduce anxiety or panic attacks.

Some studies have shown that foods like yogurt inhibit the increase of free radicals and neurotoxins, which lead to anxiety.

Oatmeal with Berries and Walnuts

Oats contain a high amount of fiber and whole grains that help to keep our digestive system smooth. And a robust digestive system is linked to good mental health. Studies have shown that those who consume healthy carbohydrates feel more relaxed and relaxed than those who have reduced their carbohydrate intake.

 Moreover, oats are also a good source of B vitamins. And when oats combine with berries, a good source of vitamin C, and walnuts packed with omega-3s, you can consider it a “stress-busting snack.”

Eggs

Egg yolks contain a high amount of vitamin D and are also an abundant source of protein. It contains all the essential amino acids that the body needs for growth and development. Among all the amino acids, eggs contain one essential amino acid that is Tryptophan, which further helps to create serotonin. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that has a positive effect on mood, sleep, behavior, and memory.

Immediate Stress Relieving Tasty Combos

Ever thought of relieving your stress with instant, tasty combos? Apart from all that we have discussed above, here are some instant combos and drinks which may help you deal with any stressful situations:

  • Whole Grain Crackers with Peanut Butter:  The entire grain cracker contains healthy carbohydrates, which help to stabilize blood sugar levels. While a tablespoon of peanut butter provides a punch of protein and healthy fats. And the increases in blood flow to the brain calms our mind.
  • Mug of Hot Water with Lemon: Generally, it has advised that we should start our morning with this cleansing beverage for long-term stabilization of our mental health. In this morning drink, water helps to remove waste out of your body; adding lemon in it will give your body the acidic tartness to start the day clear-headed.
  • Cashews: Cashew nuts are a rich source of magnesium and tryptophan. It also contains a healthy dose of daily zinc needs and boosts the immune system, which is required to cope with a stressful situation. So, from next time, grab a handful of cashews to chill your mind and body.
  • A glass full of smoothie: Any smoothie which includes dark green, leafy vegetable is an excellent source of antioxidants and fiber for an energy boost. It helps to increase productivity and decrease anxiety. These fresh veggies provide a refreshing or relaxing effect on the body, helping to relieve tension both mentally and physically.
  • Avocado Toast:  Avocado toast supplies satisfying, healthy fat in the form of omega-3s. The omega-3 nutrient helps to boost energy and improve your learning ability, problem-solving, and memory skills. It would be best if you chose whole-grain toast for the vitamin B boost, which converts amino acids into neurotransmitters for better brain function.
  • Apples with Tahini: We all heard “an apple a day keeps the doctor away.” Well, it is a true saying, as it also an excellent source to keep your dark mood away. This fruit helps to produce anti-depressant neurotransmitters while the Tahini on it helps to provide stress-relieving calcium.
  • Banana with Almond Butter: Bananas are a rich source of vitamin B6, which is known to be another serotonin-booster. While almond butter provides healthy protein and fat. Overall, this combo is excellent for stabilizing your blood sugar.
  • Lean beef: Lean beef help to provide you a high amount of zinc. This mineral plays an essential role in saying goodbye to your anxiety and depression-like symptoms. Zinc also helps to keep your immune system healthy, which is the basic requirement to stand up to crazy days.
  • Chia seeds: Chia seeds are a rich source of brain-boosting omega-3 fatty acids that help to deal with anxiety and panic attacks.