by Margie Coghill

People who suffer from anxiety feel stressed out in their daily lives, even when nothing particularly stressful is going on. Anxiety is your body’s natural response to stress. It’s a feeling of fear, worry or apprehension about what’s to come. Healthy eating and changes in your diet may lower your anxiety level. Try these foods to help reduce anxiety:

  1. Brazil Nuts
    Brazil nuts and other nuts are a good source of Vitamin E, which is an antioxidant. Antioxidants help prevent cancer from developing and can be beneficial for treating anxiety. Research has shown that low levels of Vitamin E may lead to depression in some people.
  2. Turkey
    Enjoying some turkey is good for your body year-round. Tryptophan is an amino acid required to produce serotonin (the “feel good hormone”). Just four ounces of white meat turkey can calm you into a peaceful sleep, which helps you ward off stress.
  3. Salmon
    Salmon is high in omega-3. Omega-3 is a fatty acid that has a significant relationship with cognitive function as well as mental health. Studies show that men who eat salmon three times a week reduced their anxiety levels.
  4. Eggs
    Egg yolks are a great source of Vitamin D. Vitamin D positively lowers depression and anxiety. Eggs are a great source of protein and contain tryptophan, which can help regulate mood, sleep, memory and behavior.
  5. Dark Chocolate
    Experts have suspected that dark chocolate may help reduce stress and anxiety. Chocolate is a good source of magnesium and has a high tryptophan content. When choosing dark chocolate, aim for 70 percent or more. A small serving of 1 to 3 grams is appropriate.
  6. Pumpkin Seeds
    Stress can worsen when we are nutritionally deficient. Zinc helps the body manage stress and balance your mood and appetite. Zinc is essential for brain and nerve development. A small handful of pumpkin seeds are rich in zinc. Try mixing pumpkin seeds with healthy trail mix for a great snack.
  7. Avocado
    Avocados are an excellent source of B vitamins, which are essential for maintaining healthy nerves and brain cells. They’re also a great source of potassium, a mineral that helps naturally lower blood pressure. Avocados pair well with onion, pepper and tomato tossed on your favorite salad.
  8. Yogurt
    Yogurt contains healthy bacteria, which has a positive effect on brain health. Yogurt is a super food with benefits including
    enhancing complexion, nourishing hair, preventing hyper tension, regulating cholesterol and aiding in proper digestion.

Lifestyle changes such as getting regular exercise and improving sleep habits may help reduce anxiety. Drink plenty of water and limit or avoid caffeine. If your anxiety interferes with your daily activities or enjoyment of life, you may need to seek medical treatment from a mental health professional.