Avocado Lovers Have A Brand New Reason To Fangirl Over The Fruit
When life gives you anxiety, eat an avocado.
There are few things in life greater than avocados.
For one, avocados make for GREAT Instagram pictures. Throw a sunny filter over your avocado toast brunch and it looks like a glossy photo out of Bon Appetit. Avocados are sort of like your popular friend everyone wants to post pictures with because they're universally loved, they make you look cool and also are so damn beautiful.
Another great avocado perk is that they're a superfood packed with tons of health benefits—so eating one pretty much cancels out our weekend pizza/beer binge, right? The delicious fruit is packed with oleic acid, lutein, folate and vitamin E. (TBH, I don't know what half of those things are, but I feel healthier just talking about them.)
And now, there's yet another reason to love 'em. New research shows a good avocado diet can, in fact, ease anxiety. Which means, BRING ON THOSE AVOS, BABY.
Over and over again, we're told not to stress eat.
It's bad for your health; you'll overeat, you won't be able to control your portion size, blah, blah, blah. You've heard it all.
However, recent research shows stress eating an avocado may actually HELP anxiety.
"In addition to healthy guidelines such as eating a balanced diet, drinking enough water to stay hydrated, and limiting or avoiding alcohol and caffeine, there are many other dietary considerations that can help relieve anxiety," Harvard Health contributor Dr. Uma Naidoo writes.
Foods rich in B vitamins, like avocados, release serotonin and dopamine.
Naidoo says that "complex carbohydrates are metabolized more slowly and therefore help maintain a more even blood sugar level, which creates a calmer feeling." She also notes that skipping meals will cause blood sugar levels to plummet, which can make anxiety worse.
So basically, think of avocados as a natural mood booster/stress reliever.
In addition to avocados, here are some other healthy foods that'll help you chillax:
—Foods rich in magnesium like leafy greens, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains
—Foods loaded with zinc including oysters, cashews, liver, beef and egg yolks
—Fish: omega-3 is known to reduce anxiety
—Sauerkraut, pickles, kefir (if you dare...)
Naidoo points out that while a good diet is effective in relieving anxiety, it's not meant to be a substitute for traditional therapies—but it certainly can provide comfort. "[T]he relationship between food, mood, and anxiety is garnering more and more attention."
So next time you're hungover and crabby at brunch because you have to wait two hours for a table, just know that avocados might be the magical cure to your misery.
Keep calm and eat avocado toast.
Be sure to throw an egg on top, while you're at it.