Sometimes the Best Anxiety Treatment Is Cookies and Milk
Finding the best anxiety treatment can be hard, because having anxiety is more than being a little worried. Anxiety affects mind, body, and spirit, and it interferes with living. Therefore, people search for effective anxiety treatments: medication, therapy, alternative treatments, and tools and techniques that are effective in managing anxiety. Many research-based, formal anxiety treatments exist, and that’s a very good thing (Anxiety Treatment: How to Treat Anxiety). However, sometimes the best anxiety treatment is a plate of cookies, a glass of milk, and the company of a loved one.
A caveat: one of the best things for anxiety is maintaining a nutritious diet (Nutrition Therapy for Anxiety Disorders). Further, emotional eating is harmful to both physical and mental health. Using food and harmful substances to suppress anxiety symptoms not only doesn’t alleviate anxiety but actually creates other difficulties. Here, “cookies and milk” refers to a serving of just a few cookies and a glass of milk.
What Company, Cookies and Milk Offer as Anxiety Treatment
Sometimes when anxiety flares, we feel overwhelmed. Nothing feels right; everything feels off. To even imagine being able to live free of anxiety can feel impossible. Nothing we try seems to help at all. When we feel hopeless, fear and worry about anxiety increase. Anxiety makes it hard to think, plan, or talk things out. That doesn’t mean, though, that we don’t want to do those very things. It’s just that anxiety is in the way.
It’s at this point that cookies, milk, and company enter as the best anxiety treatment.
- Cookies and milk are comfort foods. As such, they reduce stress and increase positive emotions. Both of these counter anxiety.
- Cookies and milk stimulate the senses: warm cookies, the scent of cinnamon or brown sugar or chocolate, soft, gooey goodness and cool, smooth milk. By slowly savoring the experience of the cookie, you practice deep breathing (Breathing Techniques to Calm Anxiety and Panic) and mindfulness meditation, techniques that are proven to be effective anxiety treatments.
- Cookies and milk encourage meaningful connection. While cookies and milk alone can be a very effective anxiety treatment, sharing them with someone you care about can take anxiety down several extra notches. The ritual of cookies and milk offers a way to connect on a level that is deeper than words. Perhaps the experience revitalizes shared memories. Perhaps it's simply a way to be together in the present. Sitting down together with something as neutral as a cookie is a way to simply be without worrying about what to say or do. In this way, cookies, milk, and connection reduce anxiety.
- Cookies, milk, and connection are good. Anxiety is complex and twisted, but cookies, milk, and connection are simple, pure things. They send the very true message that there is goodness and sweetness in the world, and it's ours to enjoy when we are intentional about it.
Enjoy the Best Anxiety Treatment of Cookies and Milk
Cookies and milk can't solve problems or end anxiety, but they do reduce anxiety in the moment. Enjoying them, perhaps with good company, can minimize anxiety for a while. Cookies, milk, and connection can give someone the quiet support and resolve needed to deal positively with anxiety, and that's precisely why cookies, milk, and connection may be the best anxiety treatment.
Peterson, T. (2016, September 8). Sometimes the Best Anxiety Treatment Is Cookies and Milk, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2021, May 14 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2016/09/sometimes-the-best-anxiety-treatment-is-cookies-and-milk