A lot of women come to me saying –
“I’m having panic attacks every week – right in the middle of the workday.”
“I wake up super anxious & can’t sleep.”
“I feel like I’ve hit rock bottom.”
Can you relate?
I sure can. Before I found functional medicine, ^^ this was the norm for me. Being stuck in this low place can make you feel hopeless…
As a functional medicine health coach who helps women overcome anxiety – and as a woman who’s healed from anxiety myself – I want you to know there is hope!
When I see clients 1:1, we dig deep with personalized treatment plans that include testing, lifestyle changes, coping techniques, meal plans, and more.
But, I get it!
Not everyone is able to work 1:1 with a health coach, and that’s okay because I have some quick wins for you…things you can adjust in your diet, starting now.
Nutrition is honestly one of the things I get most excited about when it comes to helping people reduce anxiety naturally, because it’s often completely overlooked.
So let’s dive in with 3 essential nutrients you need in your diet to reduce anxiety naturally (plus, where to find them) so you can start feeling better fast.
What Causes Anxiety?
First, let’s talk about what causes anxiety.
The root cause can differ from person to person. But I can tell you after working with hundreds of women that it’s usually a combination of internal & external factors, rather than a single chemical imbalance requiring medication to resolve.
Some factors that can be at play:
- an imbalance of gut bacteria
- an overactive thyroid
- mold exposure
- psychological stress
It usually takes some investigative work (and strategic experimentation) to get to the bottom of these things, but the good news is there are steps you can take to reduce anxiety naturally, even before having all the answers.
So let’s talk about how you can use the power of nutrition to help reduce your anxiety.
Key Nutrients to Help Reduce Anxiety Naturally
Nutrition plays a crucial role in healing from any chronic health problem – and the same is true for anxiety. Why?
These 3 nutrients support the brain and nervous system, helping to combat anxiety:
Magnesium is the top nutrient I recommend to clients looking to reduce anxiety naturally!
This miracle mineral turns on the parasympathetic nervous system, which controls the body’s ability to relax. (3) This can be referred to as the “rest and digest” state. A lot of busy women find their body is constantly running in “go-go-go” mode! This activation regulates the nervous system and lowers your stress response.
Foods rich in Magnesium
Magnesium is essential to many internal systems in the body, so it’s important to get magnesium in your diet whether you struggle with anxiety or not.
Foods high in magnesium include –
- Dark chocolate
- Pumpkin seeds
You can learn what type of magnesium is the best fit for your symptoms here.
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the healthy function of our brain and nervous systems. Studies show that this power nutrient is associated with improvement in anxiety symptoms. (4)
Foods rich in Omega-3
There are 3 main omega-3s – Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) – which are most commonly found in fish. But if you’re vegan, don’t worry! There are other ways to get it too.
Foods high in Omega-3s include–
- Chia seeds
There are 8 different B vitamins – B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, B12 – that play a crucial role in supporting strong health in some way. Most of them are helpful in easing anxiety, especially B-12. There’s a strong correlation between lack of B-12 and anxiety. (5)
Foods rich in B Vitamins
You may not know that aside from B12, your body can’t store these vitamins for very long. So you need to replenish them often through food or supplements.
Foods high in Vitamin B include–
- Leafy greens
While eating a diet that’s high in these essential nutrients is great, I usually recommend adding high-quality supplements if you’re not super consistent in your diet. Using targeted supplements acts as a safety net, so you know you’re getting the amount your body needs to function optimally.
You can purchase magnesium, omega-3, and vitamin B supplements I recommend at my online store.
Another Note on Using Nutrition to Help Anxiety
You could be eating a diverse, healthy diet – even one that’s rich in these essential nutrients – and be thinking…
My dinner plate is usually packed with these things.
I already take supplements daily.
I’ve tried this – still anxious & can’t sleep.
That tells me there’s a deeper issue at play. Maybe there’s a problem in the GI tract that’s preventing the absorption of nutrients? Or maybe you have a food sensitivity that’s throwing everything off?
If you’ve tried everything under the sun, including nutrition, to help your anxiety, and just aren’t seeing results, it’s probably time to work with a professional. Developing a comprehensive treatment plan is deeply individual because it involves running tests to figure out what’s going on under the surface.
So, eating a diet rich in these nutrients is an excellent place to start! But if you’re still experiencing symptoms – like feeling your heart race suddenly or being so anxious you can’t sleep – I recommend reaching out to a functional health coach for more support.
Become the CEO of Your Health
Are you tired of letting anxiety run your life, but feeling stuck on how to actually make a change? I see you, friend. I was there – it’s damn hard. But I believe in you.
This month, I take a huge step toward fulfilling a huge dream of becoming a published author, as I launching my first book, Corporate Dropouts. In it, you’ll learn how I turned my pain into my passion and became the CEO of my own health. THIS is exactly what I want for you! Well, maybe not necessarily ditching your 9-5 😉 but taking control of your health!
If you’re in need of some serious inspiration & want to find freedom from the cycle of burnout, this book is for you!
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