I am such a worrier

Personality isn’t set in stone. We do inherit different genes at birth, but our experiences and our food and drink interact with our genes to make us who we are. Changing what food and drink we consume is one way we can change our personality.


Life can be stressful. Some relationships are tough, and we cannot always walk away from them. We may have to support a parent with Alzheimer’s, or work with a nasty boss. However, some stresses can be avoided. We don’t have to watch intense films. We can try to find more relaxing hobbies, maybe gardening, walking, reading novels, listening to relaxing music, cooking, sewing, knitting, or doing craft work, whatever suits us.

Holidays can be local and restful, instead of involving driving thousands of miles, and standing in long queues to visit tourist attractions. Talking worries over with friends can help. If watching the news is too upsetting, why not listen to it on the radio, where we do not have to see what has happened? Try avoiding coffee, as the caffeine can make us tense.

I used to work in Africa. Life was tough for many, much tougher than here, but most of the time people seemed less worried than in England. Why? Was it because the media did not try to sell their wares by ramping up anxiety and excitement, or was it what people ate and drank? Maybe it was both.

Most people I knew in Africa could only afford meat when they had visitors, or on pay day. The staple in many areas was polenta, made from maize. They would have a stew made with kale or other leaves. Sometimes they would have dried beans.

I made sure my pupils had green vegetables, onions and beans, and if possible, tomatoes, mangoes, pineapples and bananas. Green leaves, bananas, nuts, seeds, lentils and beans all provide magnesium, which keeps us calm and serene, ready for what life throws at us.

I often recommend magnesium supplements if people are anxious. They need to be well absorbed ones, like magnesium glycinate or citrate. With cheap magnesium supplements, like oxide, hydroxide, sulphate or carbonate, not much is absorbed into the bloodstream, and the rest is left in the gut. That can cause diarrhoea, which rarely happens with the well absorbed forms.

Another useful substance is myo-inositol, often just called inositol. This is in our cell membranes, which control the movement of messages in the nervous system. It is in meat, eggs, lentils, nuts, seeds, potatoes and green leaves. Inositol supplements come as a sweet powder to put on food, in capsules, or alternatively it can be taken in lecithin granules. It is used to help with anxiety, insomnia, and even withdrawal from addictions, the legal ones like cigarettes, and the illegal ones too. Together with magnesium, inositol can be used for those with panic attacks, post traumatic stress disorder, or obsessive compulsive disorder.

The body is a complicated chemical factory. If a chemical industry makes poor quality products, it is important to check that the raw materials are good quality. Similarly, if the human body is to be happy and healthy, the foods and drinks consumed need to be of sufficient quality for us to make everything our bodies and brains need.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Nutritionist Resource are reviewed by our editorial team.

Share this article with a friend
Stockport, Cheshire, SK4 3NP
Written by Margaret Moss, MA UCTD DipION MBANT CBiol MRSB
Stockport, Cheshire, SK4 3NP

Margaret Moss.

Nutrition and Allergy Clinic
11, Mauldeth Close


Margaret is a nutritional therapist and chartered biologist with an international clinic. She has published many articles in medical journals and for the general public. She specialises in those people who have complex illnesses

Show comments

Find a nutritionist dealing with Stress

All nutrition professionals are verified

All nutrition professionals are verified