Certain plant-based foods can help relieve anxiety

Updated April 16, 2019. Feeling of anxiety are like unwanted house guests that move in for days too long. They are experienced by many, and are a prominent issue within society.

While it can be easy as pie to eat our feelings with processed comfort food, in the long run these foods can make you feel a whole lot worse. Another food type which can heighten feelings of anxiety is dairy – Research shows that people who have anxiety often notice an increase in their symptoms after consuming dairy products. Dairy is inflammatory which can cause other discomforts such as bloating, diarrhea, and constipation, among other things.

With this in mind, here are some just-as-delicious plant-based foods which can help to relive the dreaded feeling of being anxious. Whilst these foods can help relieve symptoms of anxiety, remember that before you seek food fixes as treatment, speak to a medical professional or counselor.

10 Vegan Foods To Help Relieve Feelings of Anxiety


1. Nuts

Nuts are rich in vitamin B

Nuts are high in vitamin B, a vitamin that participates to the “fight or flight” response within our bodies and also calms the nervous system. Not only that, the relationship between the high amount of magnesium and calcium in nuts enables natural sedative, muscles movement and nerve cell conduction. Try having a handful of almonds or walnuts daily.

2. Ginger Root

Ginger can help relieve anxiety

Particularly when consumed as a supplement, ginger has brilliant anxiety-reducing qualities which can take effect soon after consumption. Try ginger teas, ginger juices, crushed ginger, or add ginger to stir-frys and salads.

3. Leafy Greens

Try to eat dark, leafy greens daily

High in iron, vitamin B, omega-3’s, protein and more — these nutritional powerhouses boast a range of different health benefits, including anxiety relief. Similarly to nuts, dark leafy greens boast lots of magnesium and calcium – which relax/contract muscles and enables the act of a natural sedative.

4. Beans

Beans are also a good source of fiber and protein

Beans, beans, they’re good for your heart — beans are also good to relieve feelings of anxiety due to their tryptophan content that in turn helps the body to regulate sleep, mood and behavior. Beans are also an affordable and readily available ingredient that are rich in protein. Has there ever bean a more versatile ingredient?

5. Bananas

Bananas may help relieve anxiety

These versatile fruits are rich in serotonin’s precursor: tryptophan. Serotonin is a chemical within the body which regulates sleep mood and behavior – so eat your bananas! Try this collection of banana-tastic recipes.

6. Soybeans

Soybeans are rich in nutrients

These protein-dense beans are high in nutrients – with vitamin B being among them, a chemical that calms the nervous system. Soybeans are magnesium and calcium rich also, your next tofu scramble could have a rather calming effect that is actually very natural due to the components of soybeans.

7. Blackcurrants

Try adding blackcurrants to oatmeal

The body relies on Omega 3 fatty acids for nerve cell stability and function, neurotransmitter protection and immune system support. Thankfully – blackcurrants boast a high content of omega-3’s! Try adding blackcurrants to your favourite smoothie or next raw vegan cheesecake.

8. Guavas

Guavas are rich in vitamin C | image/Victoria Rachitzky Hoch/Flickr

Guavas not only look cool, smell amazing and have a brilliant sweet taste – they also contain plentiful Vitamin C, which supports depleted adrenal glands (a common side affect of anxiety).

9. Bell Peppers

Add bell peppers to salads and stir-frys

Particularly red or orange bell peppers, foods such as these are recognisable by their bright skins for a high Vitamin C content (a vitamin that supports adrenal glands which can be depleted by experiencing anxiety).

10. Oats

Oats are a healthy grain

Like bananas, oats are rich in tryptophan which is the precursor to serotonin (one of the body’s chemicals that is responsible for sleep, mood and behavior regulation). You’ll also find a high vitamin B and protein content in this humble grain.