Prescription drugs are too often the treatment of choice for most people suffering from anxiety and panic attacks. Often these drugs although often effective to a certain degree, present potential side effects and dangers over the long term. It is for this reason that before you do anything, look at your lifestyle and look at your diet. A hectic modern lifestyle can be difficult for both adults and children. Activities such as work deadlines, interviews, school activities and social gatherings do not make life any easier. However, having a healthy diet can help reduce feelings of stress, tension and nervousness? There are foods that help anxiety and panic attacks, but it also important to realize that there are foods that can contribute to your anxiety and panic attacks. Let’s take a look at the healthy food but at the same time, understand that fried foods, high glycemic carbs, processed foods, unrefined sugars and alcoholic beverages may have a calming affect short term, but cannot help you when you are suffering from panic attacks.
Foods That Cure Anxiety
Whole Grain Foods
These are not only good for your heart but can also have a calming effect on your mind to help in panic attacks. They contain magnesium and tryptophan, both having a powerful effect on anxiety. In fact the Mayo Clinic recommends eating complex carbs such as brown rice, whole wheat bread and whole grain pasta to boost your brain’s production of serotonin, one of the ‘feel good’ chemicals that fights anxiety and helps you feel more in control. So instead of reaching for those tempting simple carbs, like sugary delights when you are feeling anxious, grab a handful of whole grain crackers or perhaps a baked sweet potato instead.
These are not only delicious fruit but are considered superfoods. Blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries all contain natural antioxidants and vitamin C, which help regulate and prevent increases in cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone produced by your adrenal glands, and if too high can activate your stress response, raising your heart rate and blood pressure causing panic attacks or anxiety. According to the Mayo Clinic, long–term effects of high levels of cortisol can increase your risk of heart disease, depression and sleep disorders.
This is a great comfort food. But, instead of indulging on that bar of milk chocolate, enjoy the healthier alternative pure dark chocolate without the added sugars or milks. This can lower your levels of that stress hormone cortisol, as well as the harmful norepinephrine and epinephrine that can make you feel anxious, moody and panicky. It also stimulates those ‘feel good’ chemicals that make you feel better.
Almonds contain zinc, a key nutrient for maintaining a balance mood, as well as containing both iron and healthy fats. Healthy fats are important in a balanced diet, whilst low iron levels have been known to cause brain fatigue, which can contribute to both anxiety and low energy levels. See the video on foods to help in anxiety or panic attacks.
When you are feeling anxious it is a good idea to make sure that your diet includes more of the omega-3 fatty acids which fish provides. These types of fats do wonders for your body and your mind. For those who are not seafood lovers, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and soybeans also include these wonderful fatty acids. Do not confuse the omega-3 acids with the harmful omega-6 fatty acids found in vegetable oils. These can increase inflammation in the brain and cause mood imbalance.
Recent studies have shown that there are a lot of calming teas that can help settle a worried or anxious mind. In particular chamomile tea has been around for centuries and is well-known as a remedy for anxiety and insomnia.