Food, Anxiety and Depression

In our current society, there are many factors that can cause or contribute to anxiety and depression. Certainly money and work problems, relationship and family issues, as well as illness and loss of loved ones are major contributors to anxiety and depression. Also, how we feel about ourselves and treat ourselves contribute greatly to how we feel. Even in the worst of times, if we are treating ourselves with compassion instead of self-judgment, we may be able to manage big challenges without anxiety or depression. In addition, being able to turn to an inner source of spiritual guidance and comfort is vital to weathering the hard times.

Food is another major factor that greatly affects how we feel. Most people don’t really notice that what they put into their bodies affects how they feel. They might know that if they “sugar out” they may crash emotionally, or if they drink too much they will feel hung over, but they are often unaware of how other foods may be creating anxiety and depression.

In the over 35 years that I’ve been a counselor, I have frequently encountered individuals whose anxiety and depression completely cleared up by tuning into how food was affecting them.

For example, Marnie discovered that dairy, wheat and sugar kept her up at night. She would wake up at around 3:00 in the morning with intense anxiety, and would be tired and depressed the next day. By experimenting around and cutting out different foods, she discovered that she slept fine when she stopped eating dairy, wheat and sugar. All her nighttime anxiety vanished and she was no longer tired and depressed.

Joel discovered that his sleeplessness and resulting depression was a direct result of caffeine from coffee, tea, chocolate and soft drinks. He had not realized how much caffeine he was actually consuming until I suggested that he cut out all caffeine and see what happened to his sleep. After a week of headaches from caffeine withdrawal, he was sleeping soundly for the first time in years and no longer felt depressed.

Adrienne discovered that her feelings of anxiety and depression, that had been with her most of her life, disappeared after she started eating only organic foods. Her system was so sensitive to the pesticides and food additives in non-organic food that she could not eat them without feeling anxious and depressed.

Alex, who periodically struggled with depression, inadvertently discovered that drinking raw milk from an organic dairy had a completely different effect on him than pasteurized milk. He was visiting Los Angeles and went into a health food store where he discovered that he could buy raw dairy products (which are outlawed in most other states). He found that the raw milk gave him more energy and elevated his mood. He also found that, while he was lactose intolerant with pasteurized milk, he had no problems with raw milk. Now he has his raw milk, cheese, and butter shipped frozen to Wyoming, and no longer struggles with depression.

Over and over again my clients, who have chosen to tune into how food was affecting them, have discovered how much their feelings were being affected by food. Many of my clients have learned that even a little sugar brings them down. Sugar consumes so many vital nutrients as the body attempts to process it that it can actually be considered a poison. How many people really take “Sugar Blues” seriously?

A hundred years ago, when people naturally ate non-processed and organically grown food, they were getting all the nutrients they needed. Now, most fruits, vegetables and grains are being grown on devitalized soil and over-processed on top of it. Cows and sheep that were once grass fed are being fed pesticide-sprayed grains and given hormones to fatten them up. As a result, much of our food not only contains little nutrients, but has many toxins as well. Without the vitamins, minerals, and many other factors that natural, organic and grass-fed food contains, many people suffer deficiencies that can cause anxiety and depression, as well a many other illnesses.

I recently found out that the fat of raw organic dairy products, especially butter, contains natural anti-inflammatory nutrients. I wonder if the huge rise in arthritis and other inflammatory conditions is related to the pasteurizing of milk. Any inflammatory condition can certainly contribute to anxiety and depression.

Food is certainly a major factor in the rise of anxiety, depression and illness. Only you can do something about this by learning how you are being affected by the foods you eat.


For more great information about Depression, Depression Symptoms and Warning Signs please visit the links below.

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Depression Warning Signs

Self-Help Tips to Stop Anxiety Attacks

Fact, anxiety disorders are among the known psychological conditions that commonly trigger individuals who are experiencing intense pressure and stress. In most cases, anxiety disorders are oftentimes mistaken as mere stress and pressure that do not necessarily need to be concerned about. There are even times when some individuals only become aware that they have extreme anxiety conditions only after they have consulted a physician.

Basically, a person who is experiencing intense feeling of anxiety and worry for more than six months is most likely suffering from a severe type of anxiety disorder. Cases of anxiety that involve excessive worrying and stress from relationships, work, environment, or situations are also sure indicators of anxiety disorders. With this, doctors and health practitioners always recommend immediate recommendations whenever anxiety becomes extreme to the point that it is already affecting a person’s daily activities and productivity.

Fortunately for those who are suffering from anxiety disorders, these forms of health condition are highly treatable. After thorough examinations and the confirmation that a patient is indeed suffering from anxiety disorder, doctors and health practitioners will then recommend the treatments that will best aid the patient’s condition. These treatments may be in the form of medication, therapy, and natural or herbal remedy.

Apart from the three common treatments recommended by physicians, there are other forms of treatments that people can try as means to stop anxiety attacks. Treating anxiety does not necessarily require one to spend a lot of money on medications and expensive treatments. As such, below are a couple of self-help tips that can aid one in managing and coping with anxiety and stress:

   1. Maintaining a healthy and balanced diet.

      Eating right is probably one of the simplest and the most rewarding ways to cope and manage anxiety attacks. This not only keeps the body fit and healthy, but it also helps reduce and control stress.

   2. Eliminating caffeine.

      Since caffeine is known to trigger tension and anxiety, avoiding too much coffee or soda consumption can really decrease one’s susceptibility to experience anxiety, sudden panic attacks, as well as mood swings.

   3. Building a strong support system

      Support from family and friends is a very important aid for those who are experiencing extreme anxiety conditions. Spending time with people who are emotionally supportive and understanding can really help a person from coping and dealing with anxiety attacks. It is said that the more a person seeks comfort from trusting family and friends, the lesser chances of experiencing sudden anxiety and extreme worrying attacks.

   4. Practicing different kinds of relaxing techniques

      Patients diagnosed with anxiety disorder are oftentimes advised by doctors or health practitioners to try practicing different types of relaxing techniques such as yoga, controlled breathing, and guided imagery. These modes of relaxation really help in reducing stress and anxiety.

   5. Meditating

      Regular meditations is also a good way of reducing one’s susceptibility to experience extreme anxiety and stress. Many people suffering from anxiety disorders prefer to adapt meditation methods like walking meditation and transcendental meditation in their everyday activities.

You can find more information at http://depression-symptoms.org