The Impact of Food on Anxiety: Insights from a Neuro-Nutritionist – PART 2

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In part 1 of this special two-part series, I exposed two surprising truths about anxiety and introduced you to additional considerations that can negatively affect mental health.

If you missed it, be sure to check out the two little-known secrets I revealed last time here– that anxiety can be a good thing, and that it serves a very valuable purpose in keeping us alive.

Now, let’s dive into the more complex relationship between nutrition, brain function, and emotional well-being and consider some of the best foods to help us better manage anxiety and improve overall health. We’ll also consider some of the worst.

Linking Neuronutrition and Anxiety

There’s no doubt that neuronutrition plays a crucial role in regulating anxiety levels. So, let’s explore this notion in greater detail.

Why? Because what we put on our fork is something we have control over.

So, let’s aim to better understand the connection between dietary habits and mental health, starting with what not to do.

PROCESSED FOOD AND ANXIETY

The consumption of (ultra) processed foods, the sales of which surged in the United States following the pandemic, is one contributor to heightened anxiety levels. 

That begs the question, why? What’s so bad about processed foods, and how can they influence anxiety?

The answer starts in the field and ends in the grocery store or fast food restaurant.

In the ever-increasing pursuit of the Mighty Dollar, making money has driven (and changed) not only farming practices but the creation of quick-to-market GMO foods that have long shelf lives, can travel long distances, and ripen in transit. 

Once ingredients reach manufacturing plants, they are combined with cheaply produced industrial seed oils, sugar, sodium, fillers, additives, gumming agents, and other chemically-produced ingredients that make the end product not only convenient, inexpensive, and readily accessible but hyper-palatable as well. 

Most of the original food’s nutritional value was stripped away in processing. To make up for this, many companies “fortify” their products by adding in the same nutrients they removed.

However, rather than being natural and bundled in the original food as nature intended, the vitamins and minerals added in manufacturing are synthetic, leaving our bodies confused about what to do with them. 

This industrialization of food has significantly transformed our entire food system. Leaving us with a greater reliance on engineered hyper-palatable processed and fast foods now, more than ever before. 

That is why I commend companies that stick true to using wholesome, natural, and organic ingredients. As much as possible, only minimally processed foods, and make them palatable using natural sweeteners. 

We would like to thank Kelly for sharing this educational story with us. 

Please share your thoughts and/or comments on this or any other article.  And if you would like to get involved and share your experience with Ataxia, please contact us.  Join our community today.  A place where we empower you to build a healthy lifestyle and raise overdue Ataxia Awareness.  Experience transformative storytelling and share your story to inspire positive change.


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