#HealthBytes: Top 5 food-items to help deal with anxiety
Characterized by continuous worry and nervousness, anxiety is a common psychological problem these days. Among other things, modern lifestyle and dietary habits are to be blamed for it. But, before trying out medication, certain at-home lifestyle and dietary changes may be helpful. Here are top 5 food-items to help you deal with anxiety.
Research suggests that consuming dark chocolate can keep levels of stress hormones (including cortisol) in check. Also, chocolate is a natural mood-booster that promotes positive thoughts, thereby helping reduce anxiety. However, don't end up buying sugar-loaded chocolates, instead- choose only good-quality dark chocolate (that's atleast 70% cocoa). Also, mind your portions, as too much of dark chocolate may bring unwanted calories.
Stress and anxiety deplete our body's Vitamin-B value, and snacking on nuts can help restore the same. Further, research suggests that the potassium in nuts lowers blood pressure, and reduces the strain that stress might put on our heart. Plus, nuts are easy-peasy to have. Pick some on-the-go, and start munching right away. Don't forget to mind the numbers though, to avoid getting fat.
The healthy bacteria such as Lactobaccilus and Bifidobacteria in yogurt can have major positive effects on our brain health. Further, research suggests that yogurt and other dairy food items create an anti-inflammatory effect in our body, and inflammation, as we know, is often responsible for causing stress, anxiety and depression. Furthermore, studies have shown that consuming yogurt helps boosting mood, and cuts down stress.
A University College London study found out that participants who drank tea de-stressed quicker and had lower levels of cortisol, as compared to others. But, do stick to non-caffeinated, herbal tea options like chamomile, peppermint or ginger tea. These can help soothe the digestive tract, and have a calming effect on your body.
Apart from the juicily delicious taste of berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries), they've also been shown to lower blood pressure and cortisol (stress hormone) levels. This happens because berries are rich in antioxidants like anthocyanin, which are known to have amazingly positive effects on our body, including boosting of brain power. Additionally, the high Vitamin-C content of berries can significantly reduce stress and anxiety levels.