Heavy breathing, shaking hands, and a strong urge to reach for that sugar-loaded chocolate bar – these are feelings 41.6% of college students have experienced at one point or another. I am one of these students. After over four years, I've found that sugar is not the cure to these feelings. Instead, here's a list of seven different foods that will help reduce your anxiety.

1. Chamomile Tea 

Kimberly Kao

Chamomile is known to have natural antidepressant effects, thus lowering rates of anxiety. It relaxes blood vessels and muscle fibers, so the anxiety that makes you so tense will loosen up. You can even have fun and get into the art of tea.

2. Turkey

lunchmeat, candy, cream, milk, dairy product, sweet, bread
Kimberly Kao

This one sounds surprising, but turkey is a food that will help reduce your anxiety. It contains a ton of tryptophan, a natural agent that has been shown to reduce anxiety disorders because it naturally increases serotonin in your brain. 

3. Salmon

meat, fish, seafood, grilled salmon, smoked salmon, lemon, salmon
Yonatan Soler

Salmon is considered a "fatty meat" that helps adrenaline and cortisol from spiking. Adrenaline causes your heart rate to increase and produces a general feeling of fear. Incorporating it into your diet, like with this simple recipe, gives additional benefits like fighting cramps and helping hair to stay healthy.

4. Avocados

avocado, vegetable, sweet, guacamole
Jessica Kelly

This superfood decreases blood pressure and contains Vitamin B, which is needed for neurotransmitters and brain health. Some people don't like avocados alone, so try combining it with other foods, like in this tuna avocado bowl recipe.

5. Greek Yogurt

dairy product, gelatin, jam, milk, cream, sweet
Kimberly Kao

With its high supply of Vitamins B6 and B12, calcium, magnesium, potassium, and protein, Greek yogurt shrinks anxiety very quickly by lowering your blood pressure. Spruce up the flavor and nutrition by making yourself a parfait.

6. Whole Wheat Bread

wheat bread, rye, cereal, wheat, bread, toast
Jocelyn Hsu

People try to avoid the carbs, but whole wheat bread actually increases serotonin in your brain, helping to diminish your anxiety. Whole grains are also better for your body because it takes longer to digest than sugar, thus giving you steady source of energy, rather than a rapid burst.

7. Dark Chocolate

cream, sweet, candy, milk, coffee, chocolate
Kimberly Kao

Chocolate bars are actually a food that will help reduce your anxiety. Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and reduces stress hormones. To receive the full benefits of dark chocolate, buy chocolate with 72% cacao or above.

Taking care of yourself through your diet is one of the easiest ways to improve your health. If you haven't yet, try switching up your diet to keep your anxiety at bay and gain the other health benefits.