Anxiety and food.

Are there any foods (excluding St. John’s Wort) which has been scientifically proven in well designed studies to have a beneficial effect in people with generalised anxiety disorder and/or panic disorder? I tried googling but all I could find were thousands of pages of obvious woo bullshit.

Thanks in advance.

Kava has been show to be effective in treating GAD:

Dark chocolate and the soothing crashing of the waves on a nearby beach.

By coincidence, here’s a blog post from today by a medicinal chemist. In the comments, which are generally well-informed and well-reasoned, there’s a side-discussion that Saint John’s Wort has not in fact been proven to work any better than placebo.

I’m not competent to assess the evidence myself. I can say these are folks I generally listen to. Who generally *are *competent to asses the evidence.

I thought of several, including Valerian root, but in looking that up. Yeah, I see the OP’s point.

I think that this may be one of those “try it and see if it works for you” things. Even if it’s a placebo effect, if it works it works.

(In my case, it definitely works. For a while. Then there’s a noticeable bounce-back effect that questions whether taking it at all was really worth it. But the same holds for Rx stuff.)

I know two people that swear by ashwagandha for relieving stress and anxiety and helping them to sleep better without some of the side effects they were getting from prescription meds, such as weight gain. There seems to be some evidence of this.