The Ingredient In Your Food That Could Be Giving You Anxiety

Anxiety can manifest in our minds and bodies in many different ways. Maybe you're plagued with feelings of worry or impending doom, or perhaps you're experiencing constant tension in your mind and muscles (via MedicalNewsToday).

According to Healthline, there are many possible reasons behind anxious feelings. A family history of anxiety, hormonal imbalances, and chronic illness may be contributing factors, as well as current or past experiences with trauma. Prolonged stress can also contribute to anxiety. While stress is our body's natural protective response, designed to keep us alert and alive, it can turn into anxiety when that source of stress becomes a chronic fixture in the body (via MedicalNewsToday).

Recent research has suggested that the food you eat may affect your overall emotional health, per the Psychiatric Times. When it comes to anxiety, there is 1 particular ingredient in your diet that may be leading the charge and fueling your symptoms.

Why excess sugar may trigger your anxiety

As it turns out, your sugar intake may be contributing to your feelings of anxiety. "Added sugars cause your blood sugar to go on a rollercoaster ride of spikes and crashes, and with it, your energy also goes up and down," registered dietician and certified diabetes expert Erin Palinski-Wade told Healthline. "When blood sugar crashes, your mood sours and anxiety levels can spike."

Your body is all about maintaining balance. When you eat a lot of sugar, it attempts to even itself out as quickly as possible, leading to severe highs and lows in your blood sugar levels. Dips in your blood sugar can trigger your body's "fight or flight" response, which can lead to feelings of anxiety (via Well+Good).

In order to avoid those sugar-induced feelings of anxiety, try and stay mindful of your sugar intake throughout the day. While you may have already considered monitoring your ice cream and candy consumption, be on the lookout for foods with sneaky sources of sugar, like certain condiments, sauces, and cereal, per Healthline.