9 foods and drinks that can promote calm

Certain foods and drinks can help promote a sense of calm. If you ever feel anxious, nervous or uncomfortable, you are in …

Certain foods and drinks can help promote a sense of calm.

If you ever feel anxious, nervous, or uncomfortable, you are in good company. Overall, more than 40 million American adults – just over 19% – suffer from an anxiety disorder, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

According to NAMI, anxiety disorders include:

– General anxiety disorder.

– Social anxiety disorder.

– Panic disorder.

– Phobias.

The Ministry of Health and Social Services adds obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder to this list.

Related conditions, according to NAMI, include:

– Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.


– Eating disorders.

Substance use.

– Sleeping troubles.

The COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed more than 700,000 lives in the United States has added to the concerns of Americans. In May 2021, the American Psychiatric Association published a survey showing that 64% of Americans feared their loved ones would catch the novel coronavirus. Additionally, 41% of Americans said they felt more anxious than the previous year.

While no food or drink is a quick fix for anxiety or depression, what you eat can affect your level of calm.

Here are 10 foods and drinks that can help protect you from anxiety:

1. Raw fruits and vegetables

Consume raw fruit and vegetables reduces depressive symptoms and leads to positive moods and life satisfaction in young adults, a to study published in April 2018 in the journal Frontiers in Psychology suggests.

In the study, 422 young adults between the ages of 18 and 25 living in the United States and New Zealand responded to an online survey that rated their typical consumption of raw versus cooked, canned or processed fruits and vegetables. as well as the negative and positive mental health of the participants. . By controlling for a range of factors, “consumption of raw fruits and vegetables predicted reduced depressive symptoms and higher positive mood, life satisfaction, and growth,” the researchers wrote.

The main raw foods associated with better mental health are:

– Apples.

– Bananas.

– Carrots.

Citrus fruits.

– Cucumbers.

– Dark green vegetables, like spinach.

fresh berries.

– Grapefruit.

– Kiwi.

– Salad.

“This study and other recent studies suggest that eating raw fruits and vegetables improves mood compared to processed, canned or cooked vegetables,” says Dr. Nancy Rahnama, internist and certified bariatric doctor in Beverly Hills, in California.

2. Pumpkin and squash seeds

About half of the American population is deficient in the mineral magnesiumsays Maxine Smith, dietitian at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. “It is an essential mineral that our bodies cannot manufacture,” says Smith. “As processed foods have increased, magnesium intake has decreased. ”

Among other things, maintaining healthy levels of magnesium helps decrease brain excitability, Smith explains. Research suggests that low levels of magnesium are associated with anxiety and other mood disorders.

Both pumpkin and squash seeds are good sources of magnesium. In addition, roasting the seeds does not diminish the effects of the super nutrient. A quarter cup of the seeds provides about half of your recommended daily intake of magnesium.

3. Fermented foods

Research suggests that healthy fermented foods can populate your intestinal microbiota – the diverse mix of microorganisms living in our intestines – with healthy microbes or probiotics that help reduce the effects of stress, says Smith.

Fermented foods include:

– Raw / unpasteurized apple cider vinegar.

– Kefir.

– Kimchi.

– Yogurt.

“Keep in mind that cooking kills these powerful microbes,” says Smith.

4. Nuts

Walnuts are a great source of alpha-linolenic acid, which research shows can serve as a mood booster, says Abbie Gellman, a New York-based dietitian.

A to study published in the journal Nutrients in 2019 suggests nuts may help fight depression. Using data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, researchers analyzed scores for nut consumption and depression in 26,656 people. “Depression scores were significantly lower among nut consumers and especially nut consumers compared to non-nut consumers,” the researchers wrote. After controlling for potential independent variables, nut consumers had significantly lower scores than those who did not. “The difference was greatest among women, who are more likely than men to report higher depression scores.”

The study, conducted by researchers at UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine, was supported by the California Walnut Commission. In accordance with UCLA policy, the commission’s support had no role or influence in the findings of the researchers or the publication of the research, according to the author’s conflict of interest statement.

5. Foods rich in vitamin C

Research suggests that consuming foods rich in vitamin C and other antioxidants can reduce symptoms of anxiety, says Rahnama. A meta-analysis published in 2020 in the journal BMC Psychiatry concludes “that there is some evidence to suggest that vitamin C deficiency is linked to poor mood and cognitive effects”.

Fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C understand:

– Broccoli.

– Brussels sprouts.

– Cantaloupe.


– Clementines.

– Grapefruit.

– Green and red peppers.

– Kiwi.

– Spinach.

– Tomatoes.

– Winter squash.

6. Whole grains

Whole grain foods offer a host of nutritional benefits that can promote a sense of calm. They provide lots of fiber, which are important for the proper functioning of your intestines and are good sources of B vitamins.

Here are some ways to incorporate more whole grains into your diet:

– Breads made from whole wheat flour.

– Quinoa.

– Brown rice.


– Millet.

Consuming whole grains can also have a calming effect, according to the Mayo Clinic. This is because carbohydrates are believed to increase the amount of serotonin in your brain, which can increase feelings of serenity.

7. Peppermint tea

If you feel anxious or stressed before bed, peppermint tea “can help calm the mind and ease the body,” says Karman Meyer, a registered dietitian based in Nashville, Tennessee. She is also the author of the book “Eat to Sleep: What to Eat and When to Eat It for a Good Night’s Sleep – Every Night”, which was released in 2019.

Peppermint tea contains menthol, which is a natural muscle relaxant, Meyer says. Plus, mint tea is an herbal tea, which means it’s naturally caffeine-free, “so no need to worry about the caffeine keeping you awake at night,” Meyer says.

a item published in 2019 in the journal Nature notes that researchers have found that drinking tea lowers levels of the stress hormone cortisol. “And evidence of long-term health benefits is also emerging: drinking at least (about half a cup) of green tea per day”, appears to reduce the risk of developing depression and dementia, according to the article.

8. Different types of milk

Some research suggests that Vitamin D It can be useful for boosting mood and improving sleep, according to one review of the literature published in February 2021 in the journal Sleep Medicine Reviews. Some research suggests that vitamin D may help ease symptoms of depression, says Kristin Kirkpatrick, a registered dietitian at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.

Milk can be a good source of vitamin D. In addition to cow’s milk, there is a wide range of vegetable milks which are fortified with vitamin D.

The table of milk of your choice understand:

– Almond milk.

– Cow’s milk

– Cashew milk.

– Coconut milk.

– Lactose free milk

– Oat milk.

– Pea milk.

Cow’s milk includes whole, low-fat, and fat-free options.

9. Dark chocolate

If you like dark chocolate, research published in 2019 in the journal Depression & Anxiety brings good news: the tasty treat “may be associated with reduced risk of clinically depressive symptoms.” Researchers asked 13,626 American adults aged 20 and older about their chocolate consumption, including dark chocolate, and their depressive symptoms. People who reported consuming dark chocolate had “a significantly lower likelihood of clinically relevant depressive symptoms,” the researchers found. Eating non-dark chocolate did not suggest the same association with a lower likelihood of depressive symptoms, the researchers wrote.

Consuming dark chocolate can therefore promote a sense of calm without having to eat too much sugar, says Rahnama. If you have to watch your sugar intake because you have diabetes or trying to lose weight, consult a registered dietitian.

To recap, here are nine foods and drinks that can promote calm:

– Raw fruits and vegetables.

– Pumpkin and squash seeds.

– Fermented foods.

– Nuts.

– Foods rich in vitamin C.

– Whole grains.

– Peppermint tea.

– Different types of milk.

– Dark chocolate.

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9 foods and drinks that can promote calm originally appeared on usnews.com

Update 10/21/21: This story was posted at an earlier date and has been updated with new information.

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