Consuming certain foods and beverages may help to relieve stress. Having a healthy eating plan rich in fiber and omega-3, as well as fermented foods, may help to reduce stress and improve mood.

Challenging life events or experiences can increase stress. In many cases, diet can have a direct effect on stress levels. Choosing certain foods in stressful moments can help relieve symptoms of stress and promote overall well-being.

Read on to learn more about which foods can help relieve stress.

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Stress is a physical and mental state that involves worry or tension. This state may occur as a response to traumatic experiences or sudden life changes. But it can also occur in response to life’s daily stressors.

If stress goes unchecked, it can have negative effects on overall health. In certain cases, ongoing stress can even cause or worsen mental health conditions. Following a healthy dietary plan that emphasizes stress-relieving foods can help relieve stress and may prevent further health complications.

Certain foods can help relieve stress levels and reduce anxiety. For example, evidence notes that foods rich in dietary fiber can help relieve stress. Fiber helps reduce inflammation in the body, which may help decrease stress in turn. Foods that are high in fiber include:

  • fruits and vegetables
  • beans
  • whole grains
  • nuts
  • lentils

Read on to learn more about high fiber foods.

Fermented foods can also help fight high stress levels. These foods contain bacteria that can improve gut health and relieve stress. Examples of fermented foods include:

  • yogurt
  • sauerkraut
  • kombucha
  • apple cider vinegar
  • kefir

Read on to learn more about fermented foods.

Another important nutrient for managing stress is omega-3 fatty acids. These essential nutrients can reduce stress levels when consumed regularly. Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids include:

  • fish
  • chia
  • flaxseed
  • algae

Read on to learn more about omega-3-rich foods.

Research has also found that certain types of dark chocolate may help address high stress levels. Cocoa contains plant-based compounds known as flavanols. These compounds can reduce blood pressure and help relieve stress. Other foods that contain flavanols include:

  • berries
  • apples
  • grapes

Read on to learn more about flavanols.

Following a healthy diet rich in stress-fighting foods may help manage stress levels. To learn more about what foods can relieve stress, a person can consult with a medical professional.

Beyond stress-relieving foods, there are a number of different beverages that can help reduce stress levels. Certain drinks that may help to relieve stress include:


Research has shown that green tea can help relieve stress and anxiety. Green tea contains an amino acid known as L-theanine. This amino acid can boost cognition, mood, and feelings of calm.

However, green tea does contain caffeine. For some individuals, caffeine can exacerbate feelings of stress. Herbal teas can also relieve stress without adding caffeine to the diet. Herbal teas that might help relieve stress may include:

Fresh smoothies

Getting enough fruits and vegetables can help the body combat feelings of stress. A 2022 study identified certain types of produce that can effectively relieve stress. These fruits and vegetables include:

  • pears
  • apples
  • citrus fruits
  • bananas
  • carrots
  • beetroot

A fresh smoothie containing fruits and vegetables can provide an easier way to add these nutrients to a person’s eating plan. The study also found that soy-containing products, like tofu, may help to reduce stress levels. Silken tofu blends well in a smoothie and is also nutrient dense.


Milk contains an amino acid known as tryptophan, that can help the body produce the sleep-promoting molecule serotonin. Drinking milk can also help reduce levels of inflammation.

These and other properties of milk may help with stress relief. Research has shown that a dietary plan containing milk can improve sleep quality. A glass of warm milk before bed may help soothe the nerves and promote restful sleep.

Read on to learn more about foods that may boost serotonin.

In addition to following a healthy diet, there are many other ways to relieve stress in day-to-day life. A few tips that may help with stress relief include:

  • reaching out to friends and family
  • spending time outside
  • journaling
  • making time for exercise
  • listening to music
  • getting plenty of sleep
  • avoiding alcohol

Stress is a normal part of life, but it can be especially hard to handle in busy or chaotic times. Prioritizing certain foods and drinks can help keep stress levels to a minimum.

High fiber foods, fermented foods, and foods containing cocoa may possess stress-fighting properties. Herbal teas, fresh smoothies, and milk may also help relieve stress.

Along with a balanced diet, certain lifestyle choices — such as exercising, socializing, and getting sufficient sleep — can further promote lower stress levels.