12 Major Foods To Avoid If You Have Anxiety


There are some important foods to avoid if you have anxiety. Being that anxiety disorder is a common crisis globally, taking care of yourself is the first priority to reduce anxiety and other psychological issues.

Factually, several people suffer from various causes of anxiety.

The so-called anxiety is like any other disease you may think about in life.


It may have a severe effect on your health and lifestyle just like cancer or any other disease you can imagine. 

First and foremost,  it is very important to know what exactly do we mean by the term anxiety or if someone is said to be anxious.

So what is anxiety?

Well, anxiety is an emotion that you feel when you’re stressed up. In that, when you are anxious, your body trembles and your mind becomes obsessive on the thing you’re worried about.

Being overthinking can lead to anxiety and it can lead to disruption and poor concentration on whatever you are doing, which can affect your daily activities.

Furthermore, anxiety can also affect your social life, health, and mind or can lead to brain issues.

It is, therefore, important to practice home remedies, including treatments, and exercise just like other chronic diseases may require to prevent or reduce anxiety.

For instance, do regular workouts, meditation, or exercise and eat healthy food, not alcohol.

Factually, alcohol or substance use is not the solution to anxiety, depression, or stress, but it only worsens your conditions and leads to more severe health challenges.

You only need to completely avoid alcohol and substance use, yet follow the right procedures to prevent anxiety.

For your surprises, are you aware that there are certain foods that we eat that might trigger the so-called anxiety?

Well, you should know, but before indulging in such foods, it is important to know the signs and symptoms of anxiety.

Because it is critical to know what we are dealing with.

Here are some of the signs and symptoms of anxiety disorder that you should know

  • When you feeling restless 
  • Feeling irritable at some times
  • Difficulty concentrating in your daily activities
  • You may  feel muscle pain, tightness, or soreness in joints
  • An anxious person may encounter sleeping problems
  • You may also feel tiredness even after a full night’s sleep

The above are some of the signs that may show that you are anxious, but this may be somehow related to some signs of depression, stress, or other psychological problems.

I hope the above tips are very helpful to you. Now, which foods should one avoid while feeling anxious? very simple, not all the foods we eat are healthy for our body.

There are some that may worsen our health problems, while others may help boost our immune system. Good examples of foods when need to avoid when we feel anxious are listed below.

List of Foods to avoid when feeling Anxious

These are the foods that increase the anxiety that you need to avoid: 

  1. Avoid foods high in sodium to reduce anxiety

The truth is, too much sodium in food may have a side effect on the body’s neurological system.

This may cause fatigue and damaging the immune system.

However, quality sleep is very vital to general body health, enough sleep helps in stabilizing brain function.

Due to the side effect of too much sodium, you cannot achieve quality sleep.

Furthermore, it can lead to weight gain, high blood pressure, and water retention.

All this contributes to anxiety.

In addition, excess sodium may trigger panic and depression.

Therefore, high sodium meals are some of the foods to avoid if you have anxiety.

Importantly,  consider food or use a small amount of sodium when cooking or give instruction for any food you order so that they can watch over salt applied to the meal.

  1. Sugary beverages are foods to avoid if you have anxiety

To be frank, many people like sugary food including me. However, a sugary drink triggers anxiety 100 percent.

Too much sugar in drinks or added sugar increases your blood sugar this further triggers your energy level.

In that, your energy level fluctuates.

For instance, when blood sugar increases, your mood sours, therefore, directly affect your anxiety levels.

Generally, the body contains a hormone called insulin.

Insulin regulates blood sugar and absorbs glucose in the body.

However, sugary foods or add sugar make the insulin hormone find difficult to stabilize blood sugar.

This causes an increase in anxiety levels.

Most processed and refined foods contain too much sugar and eating them may all together trigger anxiety and irritability.

Always take your time and read the labels written on the food product you intend to purchase.

Do not rush and buy the food without reading the labels.

White bread, pizza,  and pasta are some of the foods to avoid when you are anxious.

You can replace added sugar food with whole fruits like oranges, peas, mangos. 

Furthermore, whole fruits and vegetables contain minerals and vitamins that help in the body’s defense against diseases attack.

  1. Caffeine are foods to avoid if you have anxiety

I love coffee, you may love it too. However, it is one of the foods that contribute to anxiety.

This is very sad indeed. The truth is, consumption of caffeine increases anxiety levels and nervousness.

More so, caffeine decreases the production of one of the important hormones called serotonin in the body.

Serotonin is a hormone that helps regulates the moods of feeling good.

Therefore, decreases in this hormone may cause a depressed mood.

Note: Drinking coffee is not bad, however; examine the amount of coffee you take everyday, especially for you are under medication or anxious.

The truth is, caffeine is best in low doses.

Furthermore, several supplements and medications use caffeine. All this can increase anxious feelings.

For example, ginseng, and certain headache medications that are commonly used.

Instead, take Green tea

If you must use coffee then consider a low dose.

However, avoiding caffeine when you are anxious is the best way.

You can use  green tea for a clean buzz minus the jitters

  1. Processed foods are foods to avoid if you have anxiety

Processed food and Refined flours contain a lot of sugar, this may cause harmful bacteria and microbes in the gut.

This may cause chronic anxiety.

Generally, processed food can cause several chronic illnesses such as blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, heart attack, stroke, and obesity.

Therefore, there are types of foods to avoid if you have anxiety.

  1. Smoking and drug abuse

I hope you all know that smoking can be addictive.

Over time smoking and use of tobacco, marijuana, and illicit drugs such as opiates can increase the level of anxiety.

Drug abuse also affects blood flow this can hinder the production of serotonin.

Despite increasing the level of anxiety, drug abuse can cause chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, erectile dysfunction, stroke, and diabetes.

  1. Artificial Food products

Artificial food products usually contain sugar although it is very difficult to eliminate.

In that, sugar is added to several of the artificial products and you might not know.

 However, a sugar crash is the same as a caffeine crash.

This can as well cause restlessness, irritability, low concentration, muscle pain, tightness, or soreness, and all are linked to anxiety.

Therefore, avoid artificial foods when you are anxious.

  1. Alcoholic drinks are foods to avoid if you have anxiety

You may think that alcohol diminishes anxiety; however, the truth is it worsens anxiety.

Alcohol may tend to calm your nerves, but it affects your sleep and can cause sleep disorders.

Too much alcohol reduces serotonin production and blood flow all this triggers anxiety.

Furthermore, alcohol reduces the neurotransmitters in the brain and this makes you more anxious.

In addition, it can also cause the body’s system to slow down is that it is a depressant.

You just have to stop drinking alcohol. However, if you must drink then drink nonalcoholic beer but in moderation.

Being that they are the type of foods to avoid when you are anxious to stay on the safer side.

  1. Histamine intolerance

Histamine is a neurotransmitter that aggravates digestion, hormones, and the cardiovascular and nervous systems.

For instance, some special meals such as a steak and cheese plate with a glass of wine are very nice and relaxing.

However, these foods are very harmful.

During the processing, they are being converted into biogenic amines, one of which is histamine.

Histamine can trigger anxiety and may as well cause insomnia.

Wine, steak, and cheese plates are some of the foods to avoid when you are anxious

The food might be delicious and special indeed but it increases the level of anxiety.

You should limit the histamine foods. Consider whole food and natural fresh fruits.

  1. Limit dairy products

For your information, dairy products are very inflammatory.

Therefore, excessive consumption of dairy products may cause digestion disorders such as bloating, diarrhea, and constipation, among other things.

 All these are linked to anxiety. therefore, dairy products are the type of foods to avoid when you are anxious.

  1. Soda  are foods to avoid if you have anxiety

I cannot forget to talk about soda. I know many people like soda.

However, I want to challenge you today that drinking one bottle of soda is one of the foods to avoid when you are anxious since it increases anxiety. 

If you didn’t know, now know.

Soda is being prepared using artificial food coloring, additives, and aspartame ingredients.

These ingredients are very harmful to your health.

They restrict the production of serotonin in our brains causing headaches, insomnia, anxiety, and mood swings.

Furthermore, artificial food coloring, additives, and aspartame ingredients may result in cancer or can cause cancerous cells.

Therefore avoiding soda is one of the best ways to manage anxiety.

  1. Hydrogenated oil and Fried foods

Hydrogenated food contains saturated fats and trans fat.

These foods are very harmful to health and can cause chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart failure, and mental illness.

Therefore, avoid this kind of partially hydrogenated food when you are anxious.

Furthermore, most fried foods like Potatoes chip, French fries, chicken, and onion rings are cooked in hydrogenated oil.

All this contributes to anxiety

Hydrogenated foods are those that hydrogen has been added so that they can last longer.

The food becomes semi-solid for example peanut oil, coconut oil, convectional non-dairy creamers.

In addition, hydrogenated oils are packed with LDL cholesterol and can lower HDL cholesterol.

This causes depression, anxiety, and other mental problems.

Hydrogenated foods are harmful, therefore,  avoid these foods to reduce anxiety.

  1. Use of supplements and pills

Dietary supplements are some of the foods to avoid if you have anxiety.

Being that most of the supplements and pills in the market like caffeine, creatine, and green coffee beans extract may trigger anxiety levels.


They cause headaches, stomach pain, nausea, diarrhea, muscle cramping, fatigue, and agitation.

All these are linked to anxiety, depression, and stress.


Choosing dietary supplements may also cause other chronic illnesses such as erectile dysfunction.

A word from Tannos

Natural whole food, vegetables, and fruits are the best food for both anxiety management and general body health.

Avoiding poor dietary choices and a sedentary lifestyle is the best you can do.

Processed and refined foods contain too much sugar and saturated fats or trans fat.

 All of which can cause other chronic diseases despite anxiety.

About Victor Tannos

Vick is a researcher, freelancer, content writer, and lifelong learner with an ongoing curiosity to learn new things. Vick uses that curiosity, combined with his experience as a freelance to write about valuable topics on health, fitness, and lifestyle.

View all posts by Victor Tannos