There are a lot of factors that play into anxiety and depression, and some solutions are the simplest. The adage of, “you are what you eat,” couldn’t be truer. A healthy body leads to a healthy mind. Here are some studied foods that have been shown to alleviate stress and ultimately lead to a healthy existence.
Omega-3 fatty acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are a necessary part of human brain function. Research continues to show the neurological benefits of eating foods that are rich in this nutrient. Furthermore, studies have found a substantial impact from omega-3 fats on mental health, most noticeably in patients with depression. It’s been hypothesized that people with depression do not have enough EPA and DHA to maintain a healthy mind. Foods such as salmon or walnuts that are high in Omega-3 fatty acids have shown to improve levels of these neurochemicals. Also, supplements such as fish oil are an easy way to naturally help fight against depression related illnesses.
As a probiotic, mushrooms help facilitate a healthy digestive tract. With proper gut health, the body produces more serotonin. A chemical that gives us the “happy” feeling. Mushrooms grow all over the planet and can be added to nearly any dish as a delicacy for digestive health. They are stuffed with vitamins and minerals and relatively cheap. Not to mention, they help regulate blood sugar levels and are easy to cook.
Being high in polyunsaturated fats as well as vitamin B-12, oysters are full of nutrition. These shellfish have been shown to reduce symptoms of mild anxiety and depression. By lowering cortisol, which is the stress response hormone, oysters are becoming a natural and tasty path to better brain health.
Dark chocolate is a fantastically delicious way to lower blood pressure. A study conducted at Harvard University is finding that a small amount of dark chocolate can fight hypertension. Chocolate with at least 50 -70% cocoa lowered blood pressure in all 1,106 participants in the study. While it may seem counterintuitive to eat chocolate for heart health, eating a small amount daily appears to have a positive impact.
Eating pistachios has been shown to have several health benefits. While they’re sometimes frustrating to open, there is scrumptious nutrition inside. Pistachios contain a large amount of melatonin. This is a natural sleep aid that can help anxious or otherwise restless people go to sleep. They are also high in magnesium that aids in less artery dilation while in stressful situations. A healthy heart and a good night’s rest will help reduce the anxiety and stress of daily life.