Nutrition plays a role in just about every aspect of our health, and while we mostly think about physical health when it comes to the foods we eat, our mental health can be impacted as well.
The foods you eat on a daily basis have the potential to either fuel and nourish your body for optimal health, or they can cause all sorts of imbalances and lead to further stress on the body.
Let’s take a look at how diet impacts the stress on your body by talking about some of the foods you may want to avoid and then some of the best foods to add to your diet to help lower anxiety.
Foods That May Increase Stress & Anxiety
#1 Sugar: Sugar is a big one, and this all has to do with what sugar does to your blood sugar levels. Sugar can cause a sudden spike and then crash in blood sugar which can make you feel irritable and anxious. Consistent imbalances in your blood sugar can also put stress on the adrenals. Try to cut back on your sugar intake by limiting how much added sugar you are adding to things like your morning cup of coffee and try cutting back on as many packaged foods items as you can.
#2 Processed & Artificial Foods: Processed and artificial foods can add to the inflammatory load on your body, and more and more research is pointing to how inflammation can lead to symptoms of anxiety and depression. So, it’s best to avoid as many inflammatory foods as possible by cutting out fried and processed foods and avoiding anything with artificial sweeteners, food coloring, and toxic artificial ingredients like MSG and trans fats.
#3 Caffeine: While one cup of coffee to start your day may not totally throw you into an irritable and anxious state, some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others. Since caffeine can make you feel a little more jittery than usual, always listen to your body, and reduce your intake if you find it makes you feel more anxious. Sipping on a cup of Holy Basil Tulsi Tea to help promote calm and focus may be a better option.
Foods To Help Boost Mood & Lower Stress & Anxiety
So, we know that there are certain foods that may increase feelings of stress and anxiety, but there are also some really nutrient-dense foods you can add to your diet to help you feel less anxious and also reduce some of the toxic load on your body.
Here are some foods you may want to consider adding to your diet.
Healthy Fats: Avocados, nuts, seeds, coconut, olive oil, wild-caught salmon.
- Clean Protein: Legumes, nuts, seeds, collagen protein, grass-fed animal products, pasture-raised eggs, wild-caught fish.
- Superfoods: Dark leafy greens, berries, turmeric, ginger, coconut, hemp and chia seeds.
- Adaptogens: Our Yinergy and Vigor adaptogenic herb blends contain synergistic adaptogens that work together to help you feel less anxious and also work to help support your body’s stress response. Many people also notice a boost in focus and energy.
The Bottom Line
Diet plays such a large role in the body’s stress response and how anxious we feel on a regular basis. The great news is that we have the power to reduce some of that stress we put on our body, and also reduce some of those irritable and anxious feelings by simply enjoying more nutrient-dense supportive foods and eliminating some of the toxic foods that lead to imbalances in the body.
Start using nutrition to your advantage to start to feel better not only physically, but mentally as well. It all starts with one healthy food choice at a time.