Reduce stress and anxiety naturally: The Mediterranean Diet solution

In our fast-paced world, stress and anxiety can take a toll on our wellbeing. But what if there was a delicious way to combat these feelings?

A recent study suggests the Mediterranean diet might be the solution [1]. Researchers at the University of South Australia found that adhering to the Mediterranean diet, which is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats like olive oil and nuts, could significantly reduce symptoms of stress and anxiety.

This diet also includes moderate consumption of fish and poultry and limited intake of red meat and sweets.

The study involved 294 older Australians aged 60 and above. Participants filled out questionnaires about their dietary habits and underwent assessments to measure their stress and anxiety levels.

Those who closely followed the Mediterranean diet experienced lower levels of stress and anxiety compared to those who didn’t.

The abundance of nutrient-rich foods in the Mediterranean diet, such as fruits and vegetables, is believed to provide essential vitamins and minerals that support mental wellbeing. 

Additionally, the healthy fats found in olive oil and nuts are thought to have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce inflammation in the brain and improve mood [2].

Also, the Mediterranean diet is not just about what you eat but also how you eat [3]. It encourages mindful eating and socializing with family and friends, which can further reduce stress levels and foster a sense of community.

This study adds to a growing body of research supporting the Mediterranean diet’s benefits for overall health. Previous studies have linked this diet to reduced risk of heart disease, stroke and cognitive decline.

The findings suggest that making simple, manageable changes to your diet, such as incorporating more fruits, vegetables and healthy fats, can profoundly impact your mental wellbeing.

So, next time you’re feeling stressed or anxious, consider reaching for some olives, a handful of nuts or a plate of colorful veggies drizzled with olive oil.

Your mind and body will thank you for it.

[1] https://www.news-medical.net/news/20240520/Mediterranean-diet-can-reduce-symptoms-of-stress-and-anxiety-study-shows.aspx
[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10057655/
[3] https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/why-the-mediterranean-diet-works-its-not-just-the-food–its-how-you-eat-it/2016/09/10/d446b4de-7481-11e6-be4f-3f42f2e5a49e_story.html

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