Over the last year, anxiety may have seemed more common than ever. Worry and uncertainty have been major underlying themes of the Coronavirus pandemic. For some people, these feelings may pass quickly, but for others, they can develop into something more- an anxiety disorder. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America reports that approximately 40 million adults or 18% of the population are affected by an anxiety disorder each year.
Symptoms of anxiety include increased heart rate, rapid breathing, trouble sleeping, and digestive distress. When these symptoms become overwhelming or interfere with daily activities, it's time to seek support. There are various ways these symptoms may be addressed and/or treated, including:
- Behavioral therapy
- Diet and nutrition
- Meditation and mindfulness
- Deep-breathing exercises
- Prescription medications
This module will focus on the foods you eat that play a role in the management of anxiety. Some foods may aggravate anxiety-related symptoms, while others may help to lower the severity of symptoms associated with anxiety. For example, complex carbohydrates found in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, help regulate blood sugar which can make you feel calmer. Processed and packaged foods or skipping meals can have the opposite effect. As always, eating a well-balanced diet filled with fruits, vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, and adequate water consumption can have a great impact on your overall health.
When you notice your anxiety levels increasing, try incorporating one of the anxiety reducing foods from the handout into your diet.
Note: It's always a good idea to make an appointment with a healthcare provider (e.g. Psychologist or Psychiatrist) who specializes in the treatment of anxiety if your symptoms become unmanageable. Contact Work/Life Connections for support in finding a therapist.
Pumpkin Seed Dried Cherry Trail Mix [Link to pdf]
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