Creative Space Online Counseling and Coaching ~ 1 (224) 623-2251

We are an online provider who provides therapy services for individuals suffering from anxiety in the Chicagoland area, mid Illinois, and Southern Illinois. We provide coaching services, anger management, and a tailored anxiety program for individuals living in the United States and Internationally.

Does diet really affect your mental health?

Does diet really affect your mental health? 

There are some goofy things that were done in the past. For example, did you know that the reason that we have cold cereal is that it was thought that having a cold breakfast was going to have an impact on mental health? Yep! The reason that we have corn flakes and other cold cereals is because a doctor determined that it was going to reduce the urge to masturbate. 

A Tale as Old as Time

Even though foods by themselves do not necessarily have the power to stop anxiety or depression in their tracks, the combination of good nutrition and other treatment methods may be to your benefit. 

For example, if you have foods that have complex carbohydrates, the complex carbohydrates help to boost your serotonin levels in your brain. Some examples of complex carbohydrates include whole grains breads or cereals instead of simple carbohydrates like soda and sugary snacks. 

Eating protein for breakfast will help boost your energy throughout the rest of the day. You won't be as tired as you do what you need to do, and you won't be as hungry waiting for lunchtime. 

If you limit or avoid caffeine, studies say that this could help improve your anxiety or symptoms related to anxiety. Lots of caffeine has been linked to increased sleeping problems, increased levels of anxiety, and may even trigger a panic attack. 

Are you drinking enough? I've heard that the amount of fluids that an individual should drink is the weight of the individual translated into ounces, divided in half. For example, 150 lbs is 75 oz which equals 9 1/4 glasses of liquid. Dehydration can cause your body to feel tired and sluggish, and it can also affect your mood as well. How much liquid do you drink a day? 

Talk to your doctor or nutritionist about getting your vitamin levels checked to see if you need to increase a certain amount of foods or to take supplements. 

Zinc has been proven to lower anxiety, and it can be found naturally in oysters, cashews, liver, beef, and egg yolks. 

Probiotic foods have been linked to decreasing social anxiety. Some of the foods that have naturally occurring probiotic in them include pickles, sauerkraut, and kefir. Asparagus lovers? There have been studies done to prove a connection between asparagus and lowered levels of anxiety. 

Foods rich in Vitamin B, such as almonds and avocados, as well as foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as wild Alaskan salmon, have been linked to reducing both anxiety and depression. Foods that are naturally rich in magnesium, such as spinach, swiss chard, legumes, nuts, seeds, and whole grains may also help. 

Want to know some different aromatherapy techniques that may be of use to you? Check out a previous blog on different aromatherapy techniques that help with anxiety here. 

Still Need Something Extra? 

Want to get some juicy details from a nutritionist but don't know where to start? Check out our Mind and Body Day Retreat in October where we will have a nutritionist talk about everything related to good eats. Think you want to work with me? Send me a message here


Creative Space Online Counseling and Coaching

Barbara Maulding, NCC, LCPC