Nutrition and Stress and Anxiety
Nutrition and Stress and Anxiety can be closely linked
If an individual is continually stressed and anxious then my first recommendation is always that they speak with their GP and seek out a good therapist to discuss their feelings with. This is really important. This being said, a link can be found between nutrition and stress.
Then, I would suggest that we review their diet. Here are a few ways in which food and mood are closely linked:
- Neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine and GABA are synthesised in the gut. These neurotransmitters are responsible for pleasure, motivation and a sense of calm. Stress, anxiety and depression may occur if we’re not sufficiently manufacturing these brain chemicals.
- When processed foods are broken down in the gut, inflammatory lipo-polysaccharides are produced. These LPSs can travel up the vagus nerve and cross the blood-brain-barrier where they become an irritant to the brain. On the other hand, when we eat a natural and calming diet, our gut bacteria produce gorgeous short-chain fatty acids, resulting in a calm, chilled, satisfaction.
- When we are hungry, calorie deficient or nutrient deficient, our bodies are designed to go into stress mode so eating good quality foods on a regular base can help us to feel calmer.
- The stress response robs other systems of nutrients. Therefore when we are chronically stressed or anxious this may affect our immune system or reproductive system. A nutritional therapist can support you in ensuring that you have appropriate nutrient and mineral levels to deal with the stress while remaining healthy.
These are just a very few examples of the relationship between food and mood.
If you want to learn more, or discuss nutrition for stress management with me, contact me today.