5 Foods to Avoid on Sunday If You Want to Feel Less Anxious on Monday

Welcome to our series #SaveOurSundays, where we tackle the Sunday Scaries and anxieties about the workweek head on. Check back every week to learn how to take back your weekend and start your Monday on a better note.


Illustration by Haobin Ye

In theory, indulging in some comfort food might seem like a great way to counteract the Sunday Scaries. (Brunch, anyone?) But if you're prone to stress as the weekend winds down, the truth is that nutrition is a highly effective tool to ensure that you're feeling relaxed, clear-headed, and productive come Monday morning.

"Food plays a huge role in how we experience emotion and can impact symptoms such as fatigue, focus, motivation, anxiety, depression, and more," says Audry Van Houweling, a holistic psychiatrist nurse practitioner. "Our brain demands more energy than any other organ in the body, and so not surprisingly, the food we eat plays a huge role on our mental stamina and productivity."

Certain foods can also throw our hormone levels off-kilter, which can exacerbate stress and mood swings. That means if you're gearing up for a crazy week at work, taking a closer look at the foods you're eating on Sunday isn't a bad idea. (At the very least, Monday might feel slightly less painful.)

Keep reading to learn which six foods can make anxiety worse—and three others that might reverse it altogether.