They’re predominantly treated with prescription medication, therapy, or a combination of both. Nevertheless, you may wonder whether there’s a more natural way of managing these conditions.
This article explores the potential benefits of juicing as a supporting treatment for anxiety and depression.
Juicing is an effective and convenient way to add more nutrients from fruits and vegetables to your diet. As such, it may help aid anxiety and depression.
Researchers believe that vitamins, minerals, and beneficial plant compounds from different fruits and vegetables — which you get from many types of juice — may offer protective effects on mental health (
For example, one 3-month study in 27 adults with mood disorders found that including juicing as part of a healthy lifestyle may aid anxiety and depression symptoms (
After drinking at least 32 ounces (946 mL) of fruit and vegetable juice per day as part of a multifaceted study protocol including other lifestyle changes, 21 study participants reported improvements in their symptoms. This included better sleep, increased energy levels, and improved memory and concentration (
Additionally, evidence suggests that certain vitamins — including magnesium, zinc, and vitamin C — may improve anxiety and depression symptoms. For example, these nutrients may stabilize mood in episodes of mania, feelings of despair, and average heart rate (
Still, keep in mind that there’s no one-size-fits-all remedy or treatment when it comes to mental health. Also, be sure to consult with a healthcare professional if you have any concerns about your treatment.
Juicing is a simple way to get more nutrients from fruits and vegetables, which may improve symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Juice is full of nutrients like:
- B vitamins
- vitamin C
All of these have shown positive effects on anxiety and depression symptoms (
Oxidative stress occurs when harmful molecules called free radicals build up in your body and damage tissues and cells due to an impaired antioxidant defense system (
Interestingly, studies have found that people with generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) have low antioxidant levels (
Thankfully, an antioxidant-rich diet can help remove free radicals and protect against oxidative stress–induced damage in the brain, which may help lessen and prevent depression and anxiety symptoms (
What’s more, researchers believe that antioxidants may offer antidepressant effects similar to conventional antidepressants (
There are two potential ways that magnesium has antidepressant and anti-anxiety effects.
First, magnesium deficiency leads to an up-regulated stress system caused by an impairment of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis.
The HPA axis plays a big role in your mood, your emotions, and how you react to stress. So, impairing the HPA axis can affect how you process stress. This, in turn, may promote the development of anxiety disorders and depression (
Second, magnesium modulates your serotonergic, noradrenergic, and dopaminergic chemical systems.
These systems affect:
Combined, this means that magnesium may improve anxiety and depression symptoms by regulating both the HPA axis activity and influencing your brain’s chemical systems.
It’s worth noting, though, that one study observed these beneficial effects only when folate came from natural sources like fruits and vegetables. Folate from fortified foods didn’t appear to offer the same results (
Research has also found an inverse relationship between vitamin C and depression. This means that low levels of the vitamin may increase the risk of depression, while high levels are associated with improved mood (
Just like magnesium, vitamin C appears to participate in the serotonergic, noradrenergic, and dopaminergic chemical systems. If dysregulated, these systems are believed to contribute to depression (
Studies show that supplementing with vitamin C may have antidepressant effects and improve mood (
Juicing can help you increase your intake of antioxidants, magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin C, and zinc, which may reduce anxiety and depression symptoms and improve the efficacy of antidepressant drugs.
A benefit of juicing is that you can add just about any fruit and vegetable you can think of.
If you take on juicing to improve anxiety and depression symptoms, opt for ingredients that provide antioxidants, magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin C, and zinc.
- Antioxidants: broccoli, celery, cabbage, beets, kale, berries
- Magnesium: kale, cabbage, green leafy vegetables
- B vitamins: broccoli, spinach, cabbage, eggs, low fat milk, yogurt, sunflower seed butter
- Vitamin C: broccoli, celery, cabbage, kale, bell peppers, zucchini, citrus fruits
- Zinc: kale, beet greens
Try to mix up these ingredients when preparing your juice to ensure nutrient variety.
Include various fruits and vegetables in your juice to ensure you get the desired nutrients.
Juicing is an effective and natural way to add more vitamins, minerals, and beneficial plant compounds to your diet. This may improve depression and anxiety symptoms.
Increasing your intake of antioxidants, magnesium, B vitamins, vitamin C, and zinc may improve your symptoms or the efficacy of certain prescription medications.
However, keep in mind that juicing is meant to accompany the treatment prescribed by your doctor, not replace it.
Be sure to talk with your doctor before making any dietary changes.