Best Foods That Help Kick out Stress and Anxiety

Updated on January 20th, 2020
Food for Stress

We are living in a world where stress is something that you can not neglect. Stress is also responsible for causing other health issues such as type 2 diabetes, depression, anxiety, and high blood pressure. Stress can also affect your appetite as well as the waistline. A person may start taking high-fat and sugary foods (comfort food) due to stress hormones. Keeping a check on the diet helps in reducing stress.

Some of the foods for stress will provide you relief. Though no food can cure or erase the frustration, you will experience lesser stress. Eating healthy foods and making healthy choices can provide some real relief from anxiety. Instead of eating unhealthy, go for stress reduction foods.


Seventy-seven percent population in the U.S. suffer physical symptoms as a result of stress. Almost 48 percent(1) of people suffer from the adverse effects of stress.

Due to stress, 46% of people are either eating too much or consuming unhealthy foods. 29% of people have reported to either have started drinking and smoking or increased the consumption of alcohol and smoking.

Best Food for Stress

1. Green Leafy Vegetables

Green Leafy Vegetables benefits

Leafy-green vegetables are a rich magnesium source. Additionally, it contains folate that plays a main role in the feel-good chemical dopamine production. It can help in regulating cortisol and blood pressure levels. It induces the brain chemical that helps to keep you calm during stressful situations.

You can add stress reliever foods such as kale and spinach, as well as other raw vegetables and fruits in your diet. Such foods act as stress-busting powerhouses. Other foods for stress are high in folates such as broccoli, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, citrus fruit, and garbanzo beans.

Take kale slaw, which is good to keep stress away. Chopped kale or add some spinach into the delicious herbed spinach quiche portabella caps.

You can add these foods for stress in your regular diet. It will help you in dealing with stress. Seek help from a health adviser to make a list of food to be taken as well as foods to avoided.

[Also Read: Natural Treatments to relieve Stress]

2. Turkey

Have you heard about tryptophan? It is a nutrient in turkey that helps put you to sleep. Tryptophan comprises an amino acid, which our body requires for producing the neurotransmitter serotonin that helps in regulating sleep as well as mood. According to research, it may help in reducing the feelings of anxiety.

You can avoid the enticement of having fried chicken on the way home by preparing the meals in advance. The method helps you in reaping the tryptophan benefits that are present in turkey.

When talking about fried foods, they bring up unhealthy fats and destroy the proper nutrients from the tryptophan that may help you in easing the anxiety and related feelings.

When you plan a meal with turkey, dice some brown rice or quinoa, and add some veggies in that. It will provide you with a wide variety of healthy nutrients and support sound sleep. You will get very sleepy and relaxed, all because of the amino acid tryptophan present in turkey.

It will eventually transfer to serotonin, which also means good feels. Also, add some complex carbs so that you get its full benefit.

[Also Read: Potent Herbs to Treat Stress]

3. Yogurt

Yogurt Benefits

Yogurt comprises the probiotic lactobacillus rhamnosus, which helps in lowering the corticosterone (stress-induced hormone). It further helps to ease stress(2). However, you can add healthy foods in your diets such as yogurt, miso, kefir, tempeh, sauerkraut, kimchi, and pickles.

When you eat probiotic-rich yogurt two times a day, that too for a month, it can help in relieving stress and anxiety by lowering emotional region activity in the brain. It also helps in increasing the activities in the regions related to decision making.

You can swap milk with yogurt in place of milk in your cereals.

[Read: Natural Appetite Suppressant]

4. Dark Chocolate

According to a study, dark chocolate can control stress levels. Cocoa is the main ingredient of dark chocolates, and it also consists of antioxidants that help the blood vessels to get relaxed by reducing the blood pressure level. It also lowers the stress level of people who are already stressed out.

Researchers have also investigated other compounds in dark chocolate, which may offer you other health benefits. It includes reduced blood pressure, improved insulin sensitivity, and improved mood.

When you eat one average-sized dark chocolate bar (1.4 ounces) in a day for two weeks regularly, it will reduce your stress hormone levels (cortisol). Along with that, it deals with “fight-or-flight” hormones and also known as catecholamines which are usually present in highly stressed people.

[Also Read: Dark Chocolate Health Benefits]

5. Milk

milk for fibromyalgia
Image: Shutterstock

Protein lactium present in milk has the power to reduce the blood pressure levels and cortisol levels, which can further give a calming effect. However, the potassium found in milk aids in relieving muscle spasm, which is due to tensed feelings. The protein provides a calming effect on your body. It reduces blood pressure as well as cortisol levels.

You can drink milk to reduce stress and anxiety. Or mix it with something that will help you to reduce the stress level. According to research, drinking warm milk before bed tradition comes into practice because it provides tryptophan, which further helps in decreasing stress.

When you drink a glass of milk before sleeping or going to bed, it increases sleep; and eventually causes sound sleep, and help you to keep stress levels to regulate. Adults, in comparison to babies, need to intake a large quantity of milk because they have a more mature digestive system.

Food for stress is surprisingly useful to reduce stress at work as well as at home. You need to look for the stress factors so that you can deal with the root cause.

Additionally, an individual may suffer from many harmful physiological changes, and it happens due to chronic stress. If we opt for a healthy food option, it also helps in reducing stress. Rather than going for an ice cream tub, look for healthy options that are available for you.

Healthy food helps you to resolve other health issues as well. The calming properties of herbal food, remedies, supplements, and teas can actually work to get you back to a normal or stress-free life. You can take the number of food items to get rid of stress and anxiety.

In case, the feeling of stress is not lowering; you need to go to the health practitioner. He will recommend the best possible ways to deal with stress and anxiety. It includes a healthy diet (green leafy vegetable) or food that reduce stress, exercise, yoga, etc.


1. What Other Home Remedies Can You Use for Stress?

You can take a few medications, such as Xanax, Klonopin, Valium, and Ativan, which are fast-acting drugs. It can promote the calming effects to get rid of stress and anxiety. Nevertheless, the calming effects you have due to such medications are temporary, and some might have side effects.

Food for stress can help in reducing feelings of anxiety and stress. You may add a few things like Kava Root, Valerian, Theanine, Lavender, etc. in your diet. Other recommendable therapies to deal with stress are medication, exercise, and social support.

2. Does Meditation Help in Reducing Stress?

Meditation helps not only in reducing stress by reducing your heart rate and blood pressure. It may help people to become more mindful and make good food choices. With its regular practice, an individual can pay better attention to avoid fatty, sugary, and unhealthy food.

It also helps you to focus, learn, and memorize. You need to try it by sitting in a quiet and comfortable place. In meditation, you can close the eyes and relax the muscles.

3. What Herbal Supplements and Teas Are Helpful for Stress?

When you make healthy food choices and use the appropriate home remedies, herbal supplements, or even teas, it helps an individual to cope with the effects of anxiety and stress.

You can also restore health as well as wellbeing. Teas for calming the stress effect and reducing stress-related anxiety, insomnia, or anger are Chamomile, Mint, Passionflower, Peppermint, Lemon Balm Tea, Rose Tea, etc.

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