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The Villager

The Student News Site of The Village School

The Villager

The Student News Site of The Village School

The Villager

May 20, 2024

Can Food Really Help Your Anxiety?

How Much Does What You Consume Effect Your Mental Health?

Believe it or not, what you eat plays a big role in your mental well being: anxiety, stress, and mood can all be affected by certain foods that you eat.  Some foods can contribute to anxiety, while other foods and substances can diminish it. An article from Very Well Mind states that, “research has shown that people who eat diets with highly processed, high fat, and high sugar foods are more likely have anxiety than people who follow diets richer in complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, fruits, and vegetables” Developing healthy eating habits can make a huge difference in your day and hopefully reduce your anxiety. Below are some tips to help you.

Eat Small, Regular Meals

When you skip meals, your blood sugar levels can drop which could cause you to feel irritable, jittery, and have worsened anxiety. If you attempt to eat five to six smaller meals and snacks during the day, you can keep your blood sugar levels from lowering.

Have Refined Sugar Only In Moderation

Refined sugar can be found in, most sweets and soda. This can affect your body’s intake of vitamins and minerals which are important to keeping your anxiety down. You also need to be careful of hidden sugars in canned and packaged food. It’s okay to eat sugar sometimes but having it everyday could be exacerbating your anxiety.

Eat Whole Grains and Complex Carbohydrates

Eat foods that contain complex carbohydrates like brown rice, whole wheat pasta, beans, broccoli, and cabbage. It takes more time to for the body to process than simple carbohydrates like sugar. This can lead to fewer ups and downs in your serotonin levels in the brain. It may even help you feel calmer.

Limit Your Caffeine Intake

Caffeine can cause an effect in your body similar to the stress response involved in anxiety. Caffeine can be found in coffee, tea, and soda. Try alternatives such as herbal tea instead.

Drink Water

Making sure to stay hydrated can truly help your depression and anxiety. Dehydration can lead to lower energy levels which in turn can worsen anxiety. A study from WJP in 2018 showed that drinking plain water was associated with a decreased risk mental wellness problems in adults.

Incorporate Foods That Combat Anxiety

Eating certain foods may help improve brain function. Your anxiety can be positively impacted, your mood can improve, and your stress levels can decrease. Here are some foods you may want to consider adding to your diet:


The probiotics in yogurt have several health benefits. Gut health is one of the big things yogurt helps with. Researchers are exploring the connection between gut health and brain health. The bacterium Lactobacillus can help the body manage stress. It could potentially prevent the onset of mental health conditions like depression and anxiety.


Turmeric can help combat both anxiety and depression also. It contains an active compound, curcumin, that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This compound has shown to help prevent anxiety disorders and also be helpful for your overall brain health.

Dark Chocolate

The antioxidant compounds found in dark chocolate can produce protective effects for your brain. This includes, increasing blood flow to the brain. One study from MDPI found that people who ate dark chocolate for two weeks, twice a day had lower anxiety levels than those who didn’t.



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Tova Shafran
loves her silly little sweet treats and her comfy cozy bed.

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