Our diet can play an important role in helping anxiety.
Diet is very important when it comes to anxiety. It is very easy to eat too little or too much. An anxious person might eat for comfort or find it difficult to actually swallow food. So let’s look at how you can help yourself by adjusting what you eat.
Carbohydrates are the perfect food to give staying power, they also increase the production of serotonin otherwise known as the happiness hormone. Perfect examples of carbohydrates are brown bread and brown rice/pasta.
Studies have shown that foods containing Vitamin B can lift our mood. Foods that are rich in vitamin B include meat such as beef, pork and chicken. Leafy greens vegetables and citrus fruits as well as nuts and eggs. These studies also show that omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish such as salmon, tuna, herring, mackerel, anchovies, and sardines, can be uplifting and enhance your mood.
Protein can help improve mental energy and can be found in Greek yogurt, fish, meats, cheese, eggs, nuts, beans, soy, and lentils.
Water makes up on average 60 – 70 percent of the human body, it carries hormones and nutrients to their destinations, so when fluid consumption is reduced this procedure starts to slow down causing many bodily dysfunctions. Blood pressure may drop which can lead to dizziness. A faster heartbeat may be experienced as the heart tries to increase low blood pressure. With less water in the body, our bodies produce fewer digestive juices than we need for digestion. This can lead to gas, constipation, loss of appetite and nausea. Urine becomes more concentrated, which can lead to infection. Without sufficient water, the brain will suffer. Leading to headaches and tiredness. Muscles may seize up or feel weak. Water also regulates body temperature, cushions joints and lubricates eyes. So you can see why it is really important to keep your body hydrated every day not just throughout the summer months.
One last thing is the importance of breakfast. It has this name for a reason; BREAK the FAST. After a night’s sleep, our body needs re-fuelling to face the day So however hard it may be for some people, it is essential to eat something after getting up, a slice of toast, porridge of even a banana.
So now let’s have a look at things to avoid or at least reduce;
Caffeine can increase your heart rate which could trigger feelings of panic. It can also have a depressing effect. Caffeine is also a diuretic making you urinate more often, which could lead to mild dehydration, which we have already spoken about. Another problem with caffeine is that it is a stimulant which can keep you awake, leading to tiredness which then leads to more issues!
The bloodstream absorbs sugar very quickly which can provide a sudden energy boost. The problem is, the surge wears off very quickly and you are left tired and deflated.
Having a drink or two might seem like a good idea to ease anxiety or erase negative thinking but in fact, it can have the opposite effect as alcohol is a depressant and a diuretic.
POINTS TO FOCUS ON:
- Food is energy, therefore important in the upkeep of our body and the way it functions. You wouldn’t expect your car to run properly without it having the proper fuel, it is the same for your body.
- It is always a good idea to keep a food diary. Note down everything you consume and then you have a record that you can look back on to see if anything, in particular, triggers your anxiety or general mood.
- Remembering that each of these good and bad things we have discussed can affect everybody differently but in general the better your diet, the better your body will function.
How can No Panic help?
No Panic specialises in self-help recovery and our services include:
Providing people with the skills they need to manage their condition and work towards recovery.
Our aim is to give you all of the necessary advice, tools and support that you will need to recover and carry out this journey. No Panic Recovery Programs