Both daily exercise, and the use of omega-3/fish oil, can help to promote neurogenesis. Neurogenesis (birth of neurons) is the process by which neurons are generated. With the omega-3/fish oil, start with one capsule per day, and increase by a capsule every 3-4 days, until you reach 4 to 6 capsules per day.
One's diet can make a difference. Here is a list of foods to avoid, and ones to take...
Foods to avoid would be:
too much salt (you only need between 1.5 to 3 teaspoons a day)
chili or spicy powders
refined sugar and wheat aka "gut glues" (baked goods, cakes, cookies, white bread, pasta, granola, muffins, etc)
refined soy (soy milk, tofu, soybean oil)
industrial seed oils (canola oil, rice bran oil etc)
dairy if lactose sensitive
too many legumes, nuts and seeds - avoid peanuts
Foods to eat (these contain GABA, theanine and tryptophan boosters):
Water (even the slightest dehydration triggers anxiety warning bells)
Low carbohydrate, alkaline-forming vegetables such as asparagus, bamboo shoots, beets, bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbages, capsicum/bell peppers, carrots, celery, cauliflower, chard, chicory, choy sum, collards, cucumber, eggplant/aubergine, en choy, endive, escarole, gai lan, garlic, green beans, horseradish, Jerusalem artichokes, kale, kohlrabi, leeks, lettuce, New Zealand spinach, okra, onions, peas, pumpkin, radish, rutabagas, spinach, squash, sweet potatoes, tatsoi, turnips, and watercress.
Low carbohydrate, alkaline-forming fruits eaten “just ripe” are best for anxiety, such as apples, apricots, avocados, berries, cherries, coconut, currants, grapefruit, grapes, guavas, kiwi fruit, kumquats, lemons, limes, loquats, lychees, nectarines, oranges, passion fruit, peaches, pears, persimmons, rhubarb, sapotes, strawberries and tomatoes.
Nori (seaweed) is great for iodine and potassium, calcium, vitamins A, B1, C and E.
Lemon balm, rosemary, thyme and sage are natural anxiety and stress relievers in terms of herbs. Ginger for spices, and chamomile, lavender and dandelion in terms of edible flowers.
Mushrooms are great for B vitamins, selenium, copper, and potassium.
Meat with fat (not lean) and offal (livers!) are awesome for zinc, vitamin B12, selenium, phosphorus, niacin, vitamin B6, choline, riboflavin and iron. A number of forms of meat are also high in K2. Grass-fed is best.
Seafood provides high-quality protein, including oil-rich fish like salmon as great sources of Omega-3 oils as well as shellfish being particularly good for zinc.
Healthy fats and oils to use for cooking include avocado oil, butter, coconut oil, ghee, lard, macadamia oil, olive oil, schmaltz and tallow.
Bone broths (or soups with bones, especially marrow bones) are great for those suffering anxiety and from acid reflux, IBS, or FODMAPS intolerance. The glycine found in bone broths is an inhibitory neurotransmitter, meaning that it helps you relax and improves sleep quality.
Eggs provide several vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, B, D and E, choline, iron, calcium, phosphorus and potassium. Especially high in Omega-3 fatty acids, they are an excellent source of energy for anxiety sufferers.
Raw, fermented, full-fat dairy is probably best, such as cultured butter, yogurt, kefir, clotted milk, and aged cheese (gouda, cheddar). Full-fat, organic dairy would be next best while avoiding homogenized milk if you can.
Fermented foods and drinks to try out are sauerkraut, kefir, kombucha, coconut yogurt and tempeh. While helping balance your gut flora, many fermented foods increase the amount of B vitamins present, which is especially beneficial to anxiety sufferers.
Some nuts and seeds that are good are almonds, brazil nuts, cashews, chia seeds, flax seeds, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pepitas, pine nuts, pistachios, poppy seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and walnuts.
Another thing you might consider is meditation/mindfulness. I will be starting cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in the next two weeks.
I hope that some of these suggestions might help you. The very best to you, Tabby!... Chuck