Foods For Anxiety, Depression and Panic Attacks
There are many foods for anxiety, depression and panic attacks that can relieve the symptoms and have an impact on our overall health and well-being. It may not make sense but some foods can actually help to reduce the symptoms. But luckily for those who deal with these conditions, it’s really true. Of course, there’s no way to completely eliminate the problem simply by eating and drinking certain things. However, every little bit helps. Consider adding the following options to your diet, for best results.
Fruits and Veggies
Fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of antioxidants. Antioxidants assist the body in keeping infections at bay. They also have something to do with mood balance and managing blood sugar more efficiently.
If you’re not especially fond of eating fruits and vegetables with your meal, why not try drinking them instead? Smoothies have been popular for years and will no doubt remain a favorite long into the future.
It’s possible to make a smoothie out of almost any kind of fruit and vegetable combination. Get a little bit creative and see what you can come up with. The choice is up to you! Just a note here that although beetroot is good for you it can be gritty in smoothies.
If you aren’t familiar with probiotics, you’re certainly not alone. Probiotics are small specks of good bacteria that live within our intestines. One of the most popular sources of probiotics is yogurt.
In 2011, an Irish research study revealed that when mice were fed yogurt-related probiotics, they exhibited fewer behavioral traits associated with depression, stress and anxiety. If it helps mice, think what it will do for humans.
Fish and Poultry
Fish and poultry are essential to any well-balanced diet. Each of these choices provides a wide variety of nutrients. These include vitamin B, zinc and iron. Fattier fish such as salmon and flounder are rich in omega-3 fatty acids or “healthy fats.” Healthy fats promote positive function of the brain, which is said to alleviate symptoms of depression as well as anxiety.
Avoid Coffee and Caffeinated Drinks
Probably the last piece of advice you want to read is to avoid coffee and other caffeinated drinks as much as possible. However, avoiding these is important when it comes to anxiety-related mental health and warding off panic attacks.
While caffeine typically helps to boost energy levels, it also inhibits levels of serotonin in your brain. When serotonin levels are lower than necessary, you start to feel irritable and depressed, even if you don’t realize it. Caffeine also keeps you awake and makes you go to the restroom more frequently. This often leads to dehydration that, in turn, can also cause depression.
If you can’t live without beverages including coffee, tea and soda, try to go the decaffeinated route to see what happens. It may take some time to get used to the switch. But, in the long run, it’s a much healthier option.
Foods to Help Relieve Stress
Stress can cause headaches, insomnia and anxiety but there are many nutrient rich foods that can reduce or relieve the symptoms.
Anti Stress B Vitamins
When we are under stress our adrenal glands are put under unnecessary strain because of the increase in production of adrenaline. All the B Vitamins support the adrenal glands. Some great foods to boost our levels of Vitamin B are brown rice, wheat germ, soya beans, fish, whole grains, dairy products, yeast and liver.
Vitamin B5 is found in mushrooms, avocado, whole grains as well as all leafy green vegetables. This vitamin is hailed as the anti-stress vitamin. Vitamin B6 is found in whole grains as well as shellfish such as prawns, lobster and mussels. This vitamin can lift your mood significantly.
Not everyone realizes that Vitamin C is essential for the adrenal glands and is also a potent antioxidant. It is great to eat foods rich in Vitamin C several times daily especially during times of stress. When we are stressed the body will use more of this vitamin than normal. Our body can’t store Vitamin C for future use so constantly consuming it will help you immensely.
The best sources of Vitamin C are fresh fruit and vegetables. Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, kiwi fruit, citrus fruits and peppers of any color are the best choices. If you are juicing make sure you drink it straight away as the Vitamin C degrades when exposed to air.
Antioxidants to Fight Free Radicals
Antioxidants are important to fight the destructive ‘free radicals’ that are produced by the body in times of stress. The free radicals can cause cell damage and can impair our mental performance. Antioxidants also help to fight the aging effects on our body from stress.
Fresh foods are the best source of the following antioxidants:
Vitamin E – found in walnuts, almonds, sesame seeds and sunflowers seeds.
Zinc – Found in oysters, seeds, brewers years and ginger root.
Selenium – Found in Brazil nuts, shellfish and whole grains.
Vitamin A and Beta carotene found in fish oils, yellow and orange fruit and vegetables and egg yolk.
Magnesium, Calcium and Potassium
Magnesium and calcium are required for many important functions in our bodies. These minerals are both depleted during times of stress. If you increase your intake of these it can help prevent insomnia, fatigue, restlessness, cloudy thinking and irritability.
Good sources of magnesium are wheat germ, whole grains and nuts. Calcium can be found in green leafy vegetables as well as dairy products and can give you a calming effect whereas Potassium helps to fend off mental confusion and depression and is found in watercress, celery, radish and avocado.
Chromium and Slow Release Carbs
After you have an adrenaline rush brought on by stress the body usually suffers and energy slump. To help regain your energy you need complex carbohydrates and chromium. The complex carbs can be found in whole grains, beans and lentils. These foods release the energy gradually and aid in the production of mood boosting serotonin. The Chromium is in brewers yeast wholemeal bread, potatoes, green peppers, chicken and lamb. These foods will also balance your blood sugars.
Herbal Stress Busters
Rose hips contain Vitamin C and combats stress. You can take Rose hip fresh: 2-3 teaspoons, or about 1-2 grams dried in a cup of water.
You can put one teaspoon of dried Valerian root in a cup of hot water and drink before bed to promote relaxation and a good nights sleep. Avoid if taken medication.
A tablespoon of fresh peppermint leaves in hot water taken three times a day is very relaxing for your muscles.
2-6 teaspoons of hops a day is soothing due to its sedative and muscle relaxing qualities. Natural hops promote a restful sleep when taken in tea prior to going to sleep.
Fruit and Vegetables and Their Qualities
Kiwi Fruit is high in stress fighting potassium, magnesium and the antioxidants of Vitamin C and E.
Bananas are rich in potassium and carbohydrates and are perfect for keeping energy levels high and stress low.
Grapes are rich in antioxidant Vitamin C.
Tomatoes are rich in Vitamin C, beta carotene and potassium. They also contain lycopene to protect against cancer.
Radish is a good source of potassium which aids in mental alertness.
Broccoli is a fantastic source of vitamin A and potassium for healthy nerves.
Eggs boost the level of B Vitamins and chromium.
Mushrooms are one of the best sources of the stress fighting group of B Vitamins.
Red peppers are high in Vitamin C.
Potatoes contain complex carbohydrates and provide sustained energy and help with the production of serotonin for mood boosting.
Cherries are a great source of Vitamin C and help to ward off the damage of free radicals.
Sweet potato contains Vitamin A and beta carotene.
Lettuce provides the body with calcium needed for healthy nerve function.
Nuts are a great source of selenium and magnesium.
Mint is a great herb eaten fresh or used in a cup of tea to help calm the nerves.
Red Lentils supply you with complex carbohydrates that help keep the blood sugar levels constant.
Prawns and other shellfish are high in Vitamin B6.
Salmon and other oily fish contain a great source of Vitamin A and B.
Cauliflower provides us with Vitamin C and potassium. Stress depletes these nutrients.
Raspberries are rich in Vitamin C.
If you are ready to make the changes necessary and put what you learn into action straight away then our Overcoming Depression Package is for you. It is packed full of proven effective strategies to overcome depression and change your life.
The information provided on these pages is intended as a guide only. Happiness Stuff is not responsible for any consequences resulting from the use or misuse of the information provided. No liability is taken.