Gut is the second brain
Anxiety is a common mental health issue that affects a large number of people worldwide. It is characterized by symptoms such as constant worry, restlessness, fatigue, difficulty concentrating, irritability, and muscle tension. While medical diagnosis and treatment are necessary for those with severe anxiety, there are several things individuals can do to manage their day-to-day anxiety levels. One such thing is managing diet, as what we eat can deeply impact our brain health.
Here are five essential nutrients known for their anxiety-reducing properties:
1. Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are renowned for their anti-inflammatory properties. They can reduce anxiety by promoting the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin, which regulate mood. A 2018 review published in JAMA Network Open found that people who took high doses of omega-3s, up to 2,000 mg a day, experienced the most reduction in anxiety symptoms. Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish like salmon, walnuts, and flaxseeds.
2. Magnesium: Magnesium plays a pivotal role in the functioning of our nervous system. It helps relax the body by stimulating the production of melatonin and serotonin. A deficiency in magnesium has been linked to increased anxiety and stress. Foods like leafy greens, nuts, seeds, and whole grains are rich sources of magnesium, which can help relax the muscles and calm the mind.
3. B Vitamins: B vitamins, especially B6 and B12, are crucial for synthesizing neurotransmitters like serotonin and dopamine, which regulate mood. Foods such as lean meats, poultry, beans, and leafy greens provide these essential B vitamins. It is important to get tested for deficiencies and consult a doctor if supplementation is necessary.
4. Vitamin C: Vitamin C is known for its ability to repair and protect our cells and has been shown to provide anxiety relief. People with vitamin C deficiency often experience fatigue or feel depressed. Some studies have shown that individuals with lower than normal vitamin C levels experienced improved mood after receiving vitamin C supplementation. Foods rich in vitamin C include blueberries, oranges, and red peppers.
Managing anxiety requires a holistic approach, and incorporating these anxiety-reducing nutrients into your diet can be a great first step. However, it’s essential to note that proper diagnosis and treatment from healthcare professionals are necessary for severe anxiety cases. So, if you experience persistent anxiety symptoms, consult a medical professional for appropriate guidance and support.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as medical advice.