A Harvard nutritionist and brain expert avoids these 5 types of foods that can make you 'tired and stressed' - Deepstash
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Foods that can cause anxiety and fatigue

Foods that can cause anxiety and fatigue

Understanding which foods contribute to chronic inflammation of the gut and brain is a powerful step in managing your mood and energy levels.

Always try to avoid these five types of foods that can make you tired and stressed:


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1. Processed Foods

Consuming unhealthy processed foods like baked goods and soda, which are loaded with refined and added sugars floods the brain with too much glucose. This “sugar flood” can lead to inflammation in the brain and may ultimately result in depression and fatigue.

Instead, reach for nutrient-dense whole foods like fresh or vegetables and clean proteins like organic grass-fed beef .


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2. Industrial seed oils

The industrialization of the food industry has led to the development of inexpensive, highly processed oils created from the byproduct of abundant crops like soybean sunflower and palm oils.

Through processing, these oils become incredibly high in inflammatory omega-6 fatty acids and devoid of anti-inflammatory omega-3, which promotes brain health. Studies have shown that people who consume foods high in omega-6 fatty acids are at higher risk of depression compared to those who consume foods high in omega-3s.

Opt for other alternatives like extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil when cooking.


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3. Added and refined sugars

Apart from pastry desserts, sugar can also be found in surprising foods like ketchup, salad dressings and savory items like french fries.

Added and refined sugars exacerbate inflammation and overwhelm the body with more sugar than it needs, which can create increased anxiety and unstable mood levels.


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4. Fried foods

A 2016 study looked at 715 factory workers and measured their levels of depression, resilience and fried food consumption. It was found that people who consumed more fried foods were more likely to develop depression in their lifetime.

Fried foods are likely mood killers because they’re usually fried in unhealthy fats.


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5. Artificial sweeteners

Sugar replacements are increasingly common in foods that claim to be “healthy” by helping you cut down on calories.

Science implicates many artificial sweeteners can contribute to depression. One study showed that people who consume artificial sweeteners, mostly via diet drinks, are more depressed than those who don’t consume them.

To cut down on artificial sweeteners, put natural sweeteners like honey or agave nectar in your beverages.


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Foods that fight fatigue

Foods that fight fatigue

Probiotics: yogurt with active cultures, tempeh, sauerkraut, kefir, kimchi, and certain cheeses

Prebiotics: beans, oats, bananas, berries, garlic, onions, asparagus, artichokes and leeks

Low-GI carbohydrates: brown rice, steel-cut oatmeal and chia seeds

Medium-GI foods, in moderation: honey, orange juice and whole-grain bread

Healthy fats: monounsaturated fats like olive oil, nuts, nut butters and avocados

Omega-3 fatty acids: fish, tuna, herring and sardines.

Vitamins: B9, B12, B1, B6, A and C

Spices: saffron and turmeric

Herbs: oregano, lavender, passionflower and chamomile


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Generalist | Ambivert We are forever learning. One step at a time.


The gut and the brain are in constant two-way communication, and the health of one directly influences the health of the other. We rarely think about the impact food that we eat, on our brains, mood and energy levels. When inflammation is present in the gut, less energy is available to the brain and body.


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