7 Habits That Can Make Your Anxiety Worse Without Realizing It

2. Skipping Meals

“Skipping meals actually causes anxiety,” says Martinez. “It is not only about eating healthy, it is about eating at all. People probably don’t know that skipping meals or eating late cause blood sugar drops that give anxiety-like sensations.” Certain foods also contain essential nutrients that help to combat anxiety and depression, such as selenium, B vitamins, omega-3 fatty acids, and serotonin.

3. Drinking Too Much Coffee

Many of us have had a cup of coffee, only to feel the unfortunate side effects of feeling jittery and anxious afterwards. “Caffeine raises your heart rate and causes us to have that nervous feelings and to feel agitation,” says Martinez. And for people who are already prone to anxiety, caffeine can exacerbate those effects. According to WebMD, caffeine can lead to sweaty palms, a pounding heart, ringing in the ears, and even a full-blown panic attack.

4. Spending Too Much Time On Social Media

“If you spend your life 24/7 on technology at work and at home, this actually causes anxiety,” says Martinez. One study from the Pew Research Center found that the use of social media, particularly Facebook, increases anxiety and stress in people. Other research from the Australian Psychological Society found that 50 percent of teens experience elevated levels of anxiety from FOMO, or fear of missing out.