Eat your way to happiness!
1) Foods that are non-caffeinated
Avoid soda and coffee. Opt for water and caffeine free tea instead.
Caffeine agitates the stress response resulting in a feeling of lethargy as opposed to boosting energy like most caffeinated foods advertise.
As a result, routine caffeine intake can promote anxiety and depression as well as many diseases.
Water cleanses the body of toxins. Caffeine free tea served hot has the same effect with the added benefit of a calming sensation. A cup of warm tea can also ward off loneliness as the warmth mimics that of human body heat.
2) Foods that contain magnesium
Go for dark leafy greens, nuts and seeds, beans and lentils, fruits, whole grains, and fish.
Magnesium aids in relaxing the body and calming anxiety.
Chronic stress depletes your magnesium levels and low magnesium levels increase the stress response.
End the negative cycle by indulging in foods rich with magnesium.
3) Foods that contain vitamin B5 & B8
Vitamin B5, otherwise known as pantothenic acid, can be found in vegetables such as sweet potatoes and fruits like avocado.
Pantothenic acid helps reduce stress by controlling adrenaline in the body and by reducing fatigue.
Inositol, another B vitamin, is often used for the treatment of anxiety. This vitamin can be found in food such as beans and cantaloupe.
4) Foods that contain vitamin C
Vitamin C can be found in a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.
This vitamin regulates the stress hormone cortisol thereby controlling and lessening the stress response.
5) Foods rich in GABA
GABA, also known as Gamma-aminobutyric acid, can be found in beverages such as oolong tea, fermented foods like yogurt, and fortified foods such as brown rice.
This amino acid regulates anxiety.
6) Foods rich in tryptophan
Look for foods like red meats, dairy products, and legumes.
Tryptophan lessens irritability and can elevate your mood.
7) Foods that contain complex carbohydrates
Carbohydrates can be found in foods such as grains, nuts, fruits, and vegetables.
These carbs produce the hormone serotonin, which controls mood swings. A balanced diet of complex carbohydrates can ward off depression and mood disorders.
Lovallo, WR, et al. “Cortisol Responses To Mental Stress, Exercise, And Meals Following Caffeine Intake In Men And Women.” Pharmacology Biochemistry And Behavior 83.3 (n.d.): 441-447. Science Citation Index. Web. 24 Dec. 2013.