Foods that Calm the Nervous System
We all know that different types of foods have positive effects on our physical health. But did you know that some foods can affect mental health as well? If you’re experiencing agitation or anxiety, consider relief by consuming a food that is known to calm the nervous system. Read on for a list of these and more information about how this works.
Blueberries, raspberries, and strawberries are full of antioxidants and vitamin C. In one study, vitamin C intake was shown to help regulate cortisol, a hormone responsible for stress.
2. Sweet Potatoes/Yams
These orange veggies are packed full of nutrients that have positive physical and mental effects. Consuming sweet potatoes or yams can help lower blood pressure and eliminate stress.
3. Whole Grains
Like sweet potatoes, whole grains are complex carbohydrates, a type of food that helps you feel fuller for longer. Eating complex carbohydrates helps calm the nerves associated with a crash in blood sugar.
This popular breakfast item is rich in lecithin, a compound that helps regulate healthy nerve system function. Eggs are also packed with protein which helps you focus.
Not just a garnish, celery is full of nutrients that help fight stress, such as potassium and vitamins C, B 1 and E. It also contains fitonutrients, which are known to help calm the nervous system.
6. Herbal Teas
Many types of herbal teas have a calming effect on the central nervous system. You’ve probably heard of the soothing effects of chamomile, but also try ginger, lavender, cloves, and fennel if you’re looking for a calming change.
You might have heard fish called “brain food,” and it’s certainly true that it’s packed with nutrients that have a positive effect on the brain. Stress-lowering components of fish include omega-3 fatty acids, tryptophan, magnesium, protein, and B vitamins.
8. Dark Chocolate
In general, a healthy diet means steering clear of sweets. The exception is dark chocolate, which can lower levels of both cortisol and the stress hormones norepinephrine and epinephrine. It also stimulates your brain to feel pleasure.
Not only are bananas full of potassium, but they also help the body produce serotonin and melatonin. These hormones help reduce stress, allowing you to sleep better and be more relaxed.
Anxiety can be caused by an absence of folic acid, so eating foods rich in that nutrient can help calm the nervous system. This includes asparagus, which is also rich in stress-fighting vitamin C as well as fiber.