How to Use Food to Ease Anxiety

Anxiety is one of the most common mental health problems, impacting around 7.6% of the world’s population. It’s an umbrella term for a variety of illnesses, including generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and phobias, and it’s characterized by persistent feelings of tension, concern, and uneasiness that may make daily living difficult.

Some foods, mostly because of their brain-boosting characteristics, can assist support brain function and reduce the intensity of your symptoms. Here are some food items that have been scientifically shown to help with anxiety.

1. Brazil nuts

Selenium is abundant in Brazil nuts. Selenium may help mood by lowering inflammation, which is typically elevated in those who have a mood condition like anxiety.

Brazil nuts, as well as other nuts, are high in vitamin E. Antioxidant vitamin E is a substance that protects the body from free radicals. Antioxidants can help with anxiety, whereas low vitamin E levels can lead to depression in certain people.

2. Salmon

Salmon contains nutrients that promote brain health, including vitamin D and the omega-3 fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These nutrients may aid in the regulation of the neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin, both of which have soothing and relaxing characteristics.

A diet high in EPA and DHA has been linked to decrease anxiety levels. These fatty acids are thought to decrease inflammation and prevent brain cell malfunction, which is prevalent in those who suffer from anxiety. Vitamin D has also been researched for its potential to help those with anxiety and depression.

3. Chamomile

Chamomile is thought to aid in the regulation of mood-related neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, which may help to reduce anxiety-related inflammation.

4. Chocolate

Chocolate has a high amount of tryptophan, which the body converts into mood-enhancing neurotransmitters like serotonin in the brain. In fact, A 2014 study found that 40g of dark chocolate helped reduce perceived stress in female students. Magnesium is also abundant in dark chocolate. Taking magnesium supplements or eating a magnesium-rich diet may help to alleviate depressive symptoms.

5. Yogurt

Yogurt contains healthful bacteria, Lactobaccilus and Bifidobacteria. these bacteria and fermented products have positive effects on brain health. According to a 2015 research, fermented foods lowered social anxiety in some young individuals and ingesting healthy bacteria improved happiness in some people.

Additionally, including yogurt and other fermented food in the diet can benefit the natural gut bacteria and may reduce anxiety and stress.

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