5 Things Diabetics Can Do To Reduce Anxiety Naturally
Eating a diet low in fat, staying hydrated, eating more anti-oxidant foods, eating frequently and avoiding MSG, help greatly in reducing anxiety naturally in diabetic patients.
To date, little concrete scientific information has been known about the relationship between diabetes and anxiety as well as reducing anxiety naturally. Limited studies have shown that diabetes was associated with anxiety; however, those results were based on small clinic or community samples.
A UK study looked at a large population-based sample from the 2006 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) to estimate the prevalence of lifetime diagnosis of anxiety in adults with and without diabetes in the USA, under seven categories: panic disorders, phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder, stress disorders, generalized anxiety disorder, anxiety disorders due to a general medical condition, and anxiety disorder not otherwise specified.
The study concluded that Diabetes was significantly associated with anxiety in adults in this large population-based sample, particularly in Hispanics and young adults.
While getting a diabetes diagnosis, having to abruptly change your diet and lifestyle choices, along with learning to manage blood sugar levels can create fear and anxiety in any Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes patient, there are some major factors that contribute to reducing anxiety naturally in diabetics today.
1. High Protein, Low Carbohydrate Diets Contribute To Anxiety
Diets high in protein are typically high fat diets, even if you’re eating mostly chicken and fish, since all animal products have an appreciable amount of fat.
In another UK study linking type 2 diabetes mellitus and depression, mice were fed a high-fat diet and subjected to a full comprehensive metabolic and behavioral analysis to establish correlations between metabolic and psychiatric disorders.
The increased body weight, hyperglycemia and impaired glucose tolerance in response to the high fat diet were correlated with anxiogenic-like/depressive-like symptoms.
Not surprisingly, removing fat completely from the diet reversed metabolic impairments and positively changed symptoms of anxiety, although some behavioral anomalies persisted. The study provided clear-cut evidence that both pathologies are finely correlated and associated with neurotransmission in the brain.
2. Heavy Metals Contribute To Anxiety
While we don’t think much about it, toxic heavy metals are found in the air we breathe, the food we eat, and the houses we live in. They are all around us.
It isn’t yet clear what the links between heavy metals and anxiety are, , but research has revealed toxic metal exposure can result in a wide array of common mental health disorders that may mimic a variety of psychiatric “diseases”, leading to unnecessary medications and other treatments.
Toxic heavy metals such as mercury, aluminum, copper, cadmium, lead, arsenic, nickel, chrome, alloy, and steel may also contribute to anxiety. Heavy metals find their way into our bodies and the bodies of the animal protein we eat via food, pesticides and water. If you’re drinking protein powder shakes daily thinking these have a health benefit, you’re drinking heavy metals according to Consumer Reports, as well as MSG.
It’s a little known fact that, heavy metals can also be inherited from generation to generation. What’s dangerous about heavy metals is that as we age, heavy metals can build up and oxidize in the tissues. When heavy metals are present in the brain tissue, and you’re eating a high protein, high fat diet, such as the diet recommend for for many diabetics, it can cause oxidation of these metals, which then become antagonizers in the brain, conducting “heat “and interfering with electrical impulses in the brain that in turn, create anxiety.
Since fat oxidizes heavy metals, fruits and vegetables, which are low in fact de-oxidize or anti-oxidize heavy metals in the brain, which is why they’re known as anti-oxidants. Heavy metals settle in different places of the body. This may be the reason depression, anxiety, and other symptoms differ for each person. Add in the oxidation of the heavy metals and the strengthening of pathogens that feed off these metals, and it’s easy to see why these metals pose such a big threat to our health.
Foods high in anti-oxidants help to reduce anxiety naturally by removing heavy metals from the tissue in the brain and body, as well as eating wild blueberries, cilantro and replacing protein power with spirulina everyday.
3. Hydration is critical for reducing anxiety naturally.
You have to stay hydrated so as not to trigger anxiety. If you get dehydrated, you’re going to have a problem because water is critical for the brain, calming electrical activity so it doesn’t “overheat” causing an anxiety attack. Squeezing lemon into water makes it more hydrating, but diabetics would also do well to lower protein and eat more hydrating, high carbohydrate foods such as low GI fruits, vegetables and salads daily, which is by far the most effective way to hydrate with a nutritional benefit and end anxiety.
4. You want lots more anti-oxidants in your diet.
- Fruits and vegetables are the most hydrating foods. Bananas score low on the glycemic index (48) and are amazing for the nervous System. You might be saying, “Oh, it’s too much sugar.” Bananas are really high in potassium. They a also contain tryptophan, which is why they help soothe the nervous system. Also, the fructose in banana is the good kind of sugar that feeds the brain cools down electrical activity that ignites anxiety.
- Papayas are also an amazing food for taking down anxiety in the intestinal tract and the brain because papaya soothes the nervous system, as well as the nerves in the intestinal tract lining, that contribute to anxiety.
- Avocados are highly nutritious and have fatty acids that relax the brain. What’s more the monounsaturated fats in avocados can reverse insulin resistance and steady blood sugar levels. An avocado a day is essential for diabetics with anxiety to help calm the nerves.
- Zinc is critical to calm anxiety and the nervous system down. Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc. They also contain high amounts of vitamin E, B-complex, magnesium, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. Where pumpkin seeds are really effective is that they are an excellent source of tryptophan, which is critical for sleep and keeping anxiety and depression at bay.
- Leafy greens are high in bioavailable magnesium, which has deeper positive effect on the nervous system. So, if you’re someone that gets depressed, leafy greens should be a major player in your diet.
- Sweet potatoes are an excellent anti-stress food and are known to help relax muscles, steady nerves, and balance cognitive function. Sweet potatoes also score relatively low on the GI scale when they’re boiled (46). In fact, all potatoes are incredible for anxiety sufferers although they differ on the GI scale. While white potatoes score slightly higher on the Glycemic Index, they’re a rich source of vitamins A, C, & B-complex as well as minerals such as manganese, iron, magnesium, copper, and potassium. Potatoes contain an anti-oxidant called quercetin. Potatoes are an amazing source of B6 -- a vital component for the neurological system and the creation of amines -- neurotransmitters that send messages from one nerve to the next. If you have anxiety, you will do well to swap any servings of rice and pasta with potato.
5. Small Frequent Meals Help With Anxiety
With a diabetic diet it’s important not to go so many hours without eating. If you can, try to eat every 2 hours to avoid sugar lows and dehydration. Eat whole foods that are high in anti-oxidants and are hydrating, such as fruits and vegetables and avoid foods that contain MSG such as protein powder shakes and energy bars that list “natural ingredients” on their label, as these foods contain MSG. MSG builds up in the body, and it short circuits electrical impulses, neurotransmitters and neurons.
What’s more, eating a plant-based diet low in fat, staying hydrated by drinking healing herbal teas such as chamomile and lemon balm tea during the day, as well as water, and increasing your intake of anti-oxidant foods, such as fruits and vegetables, eating small frequent meals and avoiding MSG, will have you well on your way reducing anxiety levels and reducing anxiety naturally.