Natural herbs to reduce anxiety
Herbs for anxiety: 9 calming options
People with anxiety sometime consider herbal remedies as an alternative to prescription drugs. This may be because some medications, for example, beta-blockers or benzodiazepines, can have unwanted side effects.
It is important to talk to a doctor before reducing or stopping prescription medication or starting an herbal supplement. Some herbs can cause side effects or interact with other medications.
Here, we describe 9 herbs and supplements that could help to alleviate anxiety.
Ashwagandha or Withania somnifera is among a group of herbs called ‘adaptogens’.
Adaptogens affect systems and hormones in the body that regulate a person’s stress response.
Ashwagandha has a long history of use in traditional Indian, or Ayurvedic, medicine.
A small 2019 clinical trial investigated the efficacy of ashwagandha for stress and anxiety.
The 8-week study involved 58 participants with perceived stress. Each participant randomly received one of three treatments: Ashwagandha extract at doses of either 250 milligrams (mg) per day or 600 mg per day, or a placebo.
The participants who took ashwagandha showed less of the stress hormone cortisol than those in the placebo group. They also experienced improved sleep quality.
Participants who took 600 mg of ashwagandha reported significantly reduced stress levels. However, participants who took the lower dose of ashwagandha did not report a reduction in stress.
In another 2019 study, 60 participants with mild anxiety received 250 mg of ashwagandha or placebo for 60 days. Those taking the herb showed a significant reduction in some measures of anxiety but not others.
People can take ashwagandha as a tablet or in liquid tincture form.
Chamomile is a flowering herb similar in appearance to a daisy. There are two types of chamomile that people can use medicinally: Roman chamomile and German chamomile.
Some people use chamomile in the following forms to help relieve stress and anxiety:
- skin cream
A 2016 clinical trial investigated the efficacy and safety of chamomile as a long-term treatment for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).
All 93 participants received 1,500 mg of chamomile daily for 12 weeks. Some then continued taking chamomile for the next 26 weeks, while the remainder switched to a placebo.
Researchers observed that those participants who continued taking chamomile were no less likely to experience a relapse of GAD symptoms than those switching to placebo. However, when relapse did occur, the symptoms were less severe.
Some people may experience allergic reactions to chamomile, particularly if they experience reactions to the following plants:
Chamomile may interact with certain drugs, including the blood thinner warfarin, and the antirejection drug cyclosporine.
Anyone taking any type of medication should check with their doctor before consuming chamomile teas or supplements.
Valerian or Valeriana officinalis is a plant native to Europe and Asia. For many centuries, people have used the root to help treat sleep problems, anxiety, and depression.
Valerian root is available in the following forms:
To date, there have only been a few high quality studies on the effects of valerian. The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) state that there is insufficient evidence to determine whether valerian can alleviate anxiety or depression.
Studies suggest that valerian is generally safe. However, the NCCIH note that there is no information on the long-term use or safety of valerian in the following groups:
- pregnant women
- nursing mothers
- children under 3 years of age
People should also be aware that valerian may have a sleep inducing effect. Taking the herb with alcohol or sedatives will add to this effect and could be dangerous.
Lavender is a flowering plant belonging to the mint family. Many people use lavender to help calm the nerves and alleviate anxiety.
People may use lavender in the following ways:
- making tea from the leaves
- using the oil in aromatherapy
- mixing the essential oil into a base oil for massage
- adding the oil or flowers to baths
Lavender essential oil (LEO) contains chemicals called terpenes. A 2017 review article suggests that two of these terpenes called linalool and linalyl acetate may have a calming effect on chemical receptors in the brain.
The review suggests LEO may be an effective short-term treatment for anxiety disorders. However, studies of the long-term effects of LEO are lacking.
Galphimia glauca is a plant species native to Mexico. People traditionally used it as a tranquilizer to reduce anxiety.
A 2012 clinical trial investigated the efficacy of G. glauca as a treatment for GAD. Participants received either G. glauca or the prescription antianxiety medication lorazepam for 12 weeks. Researchers continued to monitor the participants for a further 3 weeks to test for withdrawal symptoms.
Results showed that participants who received a daily dose of 0.175 mg of G. glauca showed a greater reduction in GAD symptoms compared with those who took lorazepam. Both treatments were safe.
According to a 2018 review, the evidence for G. glauca as a treatment for anxiety is promising. However, medical companies have not exploited its potential due to a lack of available plant material.
Passionflower or Passiflora is a family of plants with around 550 different species. Some studies show that a particular species, P. incarnata, may be effective in treating restlessness, nervousness, and anxiety.
According to an older 2010 review of complementary treatments, some evidence suggests that the antianxiety effects of P. incarnata are comparable to those of benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepines are a class of drug that doctors may prescribe to treat anxiety.
People can take P. incarnata in tablet form or as a liquid tincture.
Kava kava, or simply kava, is a shrub that is native to the islands of the Pacific Ocean. Its scientific name is Piper methysticum.
In the Pacific Islands, people use kava in a ceremonial beverage intended to relieve stress and alter mood.
A 2013 placebo-controlled trial investigated the efficacy of kava as a treatment for GAD. The 6-week study involved 75 participants. Each person received one of three treatments: Kava extract at doses of either 120 mg or 240 mg per day, or a placebo.
Participants taking kava showed a significant reduction in anxiety compared with those who received the placebo, suggesting kava may be a moderately effective short-term treatment for GAD.
The study also found kava to be safe.
In 2002, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised that taking supplements containing kava could result in severe liver injury. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) have since indicated that the link between kava and liver toxicity is unclear, saying that scientists need to re-evaluate the data.
People can buy kava as a supplement online or in health food stores.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the active ingredients of the cannabis plant.
Research from 2019 suggests that CBD may have a calming effect on the central nervous system.
Although the FDA do not currently approve the use of CBD, this natural chemical is widely available in the following forms:
- liquid extract
- vape liquid
- topical cream
The study above investigated whether CBD could help to treat anxiety and sleep disorders. Researchers retrospectively analyzed data from 103 adults taking CBD as an additional therapy for anxiety and sleep disorders.
Of the 72 adults they included in the final sample, 57 experienced a decrease in their anxiety scores within the first month of taking CBD. These scores remained low for the 3-month study period.
The researchers concluded that CBD may be beneficial for people with anxiety-related disorders. However, clinical trials are necessary to confirm these results.
Other supplements that may help to alleviate symptoms of anxiety include:
- A combination of the amino acids L-lysine and L-arginine: These amino acids may influence brain neurotransmitters that are involved in stress and anxiety.
- Magnesium: Taking magnesium in combination with herbs such as kava and St John’s Wort may help to alleviate anxiety.
- Essential fatty acids: These may reduce stress in females who are premenstrual, pregnant, or menopausal.
- High dose sustained-release vitamin C: Females who take this supplement may experience reduced anxiety and a less drastic increase in blood pressure in response to stress.
Many herbs can interact with over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription medications. Some can increase or reduce the effects of certain drugs, potentially causing serious health effects.
People taking any kind of medication should consult their doctor or pharmacist before beginning herbal supplements.
They should also be aware that herbal remedies can take longer to start working than prescription medications.
If a person needs more advice about an herbal product, they should consult a qualified herbalist about brand, strength, and quantity.
The FDA does not monitor herbal remedies, so there are potential safety concerns for herbs that have mislabeling or contamination with heavy metals.
People have been using herbs for thousands of years to treat many health conditions. Scientific studies indicate that certain herbs may help to alleviate the symptoms of anxiety.
As with prescription medications, some herbal products can cause side effects. Herbal products may also take longer to begin working. People must consider these factors when weighing up the pros and cons of a particular treatment.
There can be serious interactions between certain herbs and medications. A person who is taking any kind of medication should consult their doctor before they begin taking herbal products.
Read the article in Spanish.
8 herbs and supplements to help treat depression
Depression is a serious mood disorder with symptoms that range from mild to debilitating and potentially life-threatening. Some people look to manage depression with herbal remedies, rather than with medication a doctor prescribes.
The most recent data from the National Institute of Mental Health suggest that in the United States, 6. 7 percent of people experienced a major depressive episode in 2016.
Medications and counseling are conventional ways to alleviate the symptoms of depression. However, some herbs and supplements may also help.
In this article, we look at the common herbs and supplements with links to the treatment of depression and discuss their safety and effectiveness.Share on PinterestSome herbs, essential oils, and supplements have shown promising effects for people with depression.
The use of complementary therapies continues to gain popularity, as people look for more natural methods of managing their health.
However, herbal does not always mean safe or effective, and knowing which products to choose can save a lot of time and money.
In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) do not monitor herbs in the same way as food and drugs. As a result, manufacturers are not always 100 percent clear about the quality or purity of their product.
Research suggests promise for some supplements in treating mild-to-moderate depression. These are some of the supplements that people most widely use:
1. St. John’s wort
St. John’s wort is also known as Hypericum perforatum. This plant has been a common herbal mental health treatment for hundreds of years. However, people must use caution if they chose to try it as a potential treatment for depression.
A 2016 systematic review found that St. John’s wort was more effective than a placebo for treating mild to moderate depression and worked almost as well as antidepressant medications.
However, this review of eligible studies did not find research on the long-term effects of St. John’s wort on severe depression.
The authors also advised caution against accepting the results wholesale, as the herb has adverse effects that many of the studies did not consider.
St John’s wort can also interfere with the effects of antidepressant medication, meaning that it may make symptoms worse or reduce the effectiveness of conventional treatment.
While St. John’s wort might help some people, it does not show consistently beneficial effects.
For these reasons, people should not use St. John’s wort instead of conventional treatment. Neither should they try St. John’s wort to treat moderate to severe depression.
This supplement comes from the gnarled root of the American or Asian ginseng plant. Siberian, Asian, and Eleuthero ginseng are different plants with different active ingredients.
Practitioners of Chinese medicine have used ginseng for thousands of years to help people improve mental clarity and energy and reduce the effects of stress.
Some people associate these properties of ginseng with potential solutions for the low energy and motivation that can occur with depression.
However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) advise that none of the many studies that people have conducted on ginseng have been of sufficient quality to form health recommendations.
A study in 2012 reviewed data about chamomile, which comes from the Matricaria recutita plant, and its role in helping to manage depression and anxiety.
The results show that chamomile produced more significant relief from depressive symptoms than a placebo. However, further studies are necessary to confirm the health benefits of chamomile in treating depressive symptoms.
Lavender oil is a popular essential oil. People typically use lavender oil for relaxation and reducing anxiety and mood disturbances.
A 2013 review of various studies suggested that lavender might have significant potential in reducing anxiety and improving sleep.
Lavender has mixed results in studies that assess its impact on anxiety. However, its effectiveness as a treatment for ongoing depression has little high-quality evidence in support at the current time.
Some studies cite using saffron as a safe and effective measure for controlling the symptoms of depression, such as this non-systematic review from 2018.
However, more research would help confirm the possible benefits of saffron for people with depression. Scientists also need to understand any possible adverse effects better.
6. SAMeShare on PinterestSome supplements have shown promising effects on depression symptoms. However, many investigations confirming their benefits are low quality.
SAMe is short for S-adenosyl methionine. It is a synthetic form of a chemical that occurs naturally in the body.
In 2016, researchers reviewed all the randomized controlled trials on record for the use of SAMe to treat depression in adults. They found no significant difference between the effects of SAMe on depression symptoms and those of a placebo.
However, they also found that SAMe had about the same effectiveness as the common antidepressants imipramine or escitalopram. Furthermore, it was better than a placebo when the researchers mixed SAMe with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor medications.
As with many other studies into herbs and supplements, the investigations into the safety and efficacy of SAMe are of low quality. More research is necessary to determine its exact effect.
People use the supplement in Europe as a prescription antidepressant. However, the FDA have not yet approved this for use in the U.S.
7. Omega-3 fatty acids
In a 2015 systematic review, researchers concluded that omega-3 fatty acid supplements are not useful across the board as a depression treatment.
While the study authors reported no serious side effects from the supplement, they also advised that it would only be an effective measure in treatment for depression that was due to omega-3 deficiency.
Also known as 5-hydroxytryptophan, this supplement may be useful in regulating and improving levels of serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that affects a person’s mood.
5-HTP has undergone a number of animal studies, and some, such as this review from 2016, cite its potential as an antidepressant therapy. However, evidence of its effects in human subjects is limited.
5-HTP is available as an over-the-counter (OTC) supplement in the U.S. but may require a prescription in other countries.
More research is necessary, especially regarding concerns that it may cause serotonin syndrome, a serious neurological complication if a person takes 5-HTP in excess.
Supplement manufacturers do not have to prove that their product is consistent. The dose on the bottle may also be inaccurate.
People should ensure they purchase herbs and supplements from a trusted manufacturer.
The symptoms of depression include:
- feelings of sadness or hopelessness
- frustration and irritability
- loss of interest in hobbies or activities that usually provide pleasure
- sleep issues, whether too much sleep or insomnia
- changes in appetite
- trouble concentrating
- thoughts of death or suicide
- physical symptoms, including headache and backache
Doctors consider that a person must experience at least 5 of these symptoms, to a disruptive extent, for at least 2 weeks to meet the criteria for a diagnosis of depression.
Share on PinterestSeek medical assistance if depression symptoms interfere with daily living.
If a person feels any of these symptoms to the point that it interferes with daily living, they should seek help from their doctor.
Medication and therapies can help a person who is experiencing depression. People are advised not to rely on herbs or supplements as a standalone line of treatment.
Depression typically becomes worse over time and requires treatment to avoid its more severe complications.
Anyone having thoughts about suicide or self-harm should immediately seek emergency help, either with their doctor or local hospital or by calling the Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK).
If a loved one or friend may be at risk of attempting suicide, stay with that person and call for emergency assistance immediately.
Herbal and natural supplements may work well for some people. However, they are not an adequate substitute for conventional treatment or for people who face a risk of suicide or self-harm.
A person taking herbal supplements must inform their doctor, as these have the potential to cause side effects and interact with other drugs.
Depression is a treatable illness, but an individual may need to try a few different options when working out which treatment is most effective.
Is marijuana proven to help depression?
That is a complex answer, and the research is mixed. When marijuana activates the cannabinoids in the brain, symptoms of depression should improve.
However, current research suggests that smoking marijuana increases apathy and social withdrawal. If you don’t care as much, the symptoms of depression might not seem so bad.
Research does not show that marijuana causes depression, but those who have depression use marijuana more commonly. For people who are self-medicating with marijuana, depression symptoms and alcohol use both increased.
Depression may present a risk for increased substance abuse, including marijuana. Motivation is lower with marijuana when someone has depression
For those who have depression, research has shown that marijuana use is a barrier to improving their symptoms and seeking mental health care. More research is needed to understand marijuana as a treatment for depression better.Debra Rose Wilson, PhD, MSN, RN, IBCLC, AHN-BC, CHT
Answers represent the opinions of our medical experts. All content is strictly informational and should not be considered medical advice.
Top 5 Women's Herbs - Recipes for Women's Health
➦ Folk Recipes for Women's Health
➦ Herbs to lower testosterone
➦ Herbal teas for women
➦ Calming herbs
➦ Herbs to increase libido
Since ancient times, herbs have been given a special place in human life. People who understand herbs and practice herbal medicine are called herbalists. There are many ways and recipes to use herbs to improve health and maintain a healthy balance in the body. Today, pharmacies offer a wide range of herbs, herbal teas, tinctures, etc. And yet it should be borne in mind that self-medication can also harm your health, so all methods of application must be agreed with your doctor.
Folk recipes for women's health
If we talk about women's health, then there is a whole list of medicinal herbs that, in combination with drugs, are recommended for the restoration and treatment of various diseases, failures and hormonal disorders (endometriosis, myoma, fibroma, colpitis, vulvovaginitis, mastopathy, cysts, erosion and cervical polyps).
Healing possibilities of oregano have been known to us for a long time and confirmed by the experience of more than one millennium. The composition of the essential oil includes phenols, thymol, tannins, free alcohols, in particular geranyl acetate, ascorbic acid. Oregano is used as an antiseptic and analgesic, as an expectorant, stomachic and tonic. Oregano is a female herb that relieves menstrual pain in women of childbearing age. It is widely used in gynecology for women over 40: it reduces the frequency and intensity of hot flashes during menopause.
Oregano should be steamed with boiling water in an enameled, earthenware or glass dish and infused for 30 minutes. Then squeeze and strain. Take a warm infusion 15 minutes before meals, one tablespoon 4-5 times a day.
Refers to hormonal herbs that have unique healing properties. It is indicated for endocrine disorders, poor health during menstruation, helps to normalize metabolism. One of the best plants for the female body, widely used in various collections and alcohol tinctures.
1 tablespoon of dried root is poured into 300 ml of water and boiled for 5 minutes (in a sealed container), let the decoction brew for at least 1 hour. Take 100 ml 3 times a day 30-40 minutes before meals with a teaspoon of natural honey.
The scientific name of this plant is ortilia lopsided and belongs to the heather family. The popular name is "grass from forty diseases" or upland uterus. The last name is not accidental. After all, since ancient times, the upland uterus has been used as a reliable remedy for female diseases.
The upland uterus is used not only for diseases of the female genital organs, but also for prostatitis. She has proven herself in the treatment of cystitis, inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract and urinary organs. The main components of the boron uterus are phytohormones. Phytohormones include plant estrogen and progesterone. They are able to normalize the hormonal background in violation of the hormonal balance in the body of a woman. It is also recommended for use in the complex therapy of infertility.
20 g of dry herb is poured into 400 ml of water and brewed in a water bath for 5 minutes. After that, the solution is filtered. The resulting solution can be used for various inflammatory diseases of the genitourinary organs, respiratory organs, and the gastrointestinal tract. Dosage - a tablespoon 4 times a day.
A plant that is not too familiar to us is the cuff, also called bear's paw or forest horseradish. It grows in northern Russia and Europe. The leaves and young shoots of the plant are used as food. Cuff-based preparations exhibit diuretic and astringent activity. They are used to combat inflammation and diseases of the upper respiratory tract, in particular, the cuff stimulates sputum discharge. In addition, the herb has a lactogenic and hemostatic effect, helps to normalize the menstrual cycle. She showed herself well in the treatment of diseases of the genital tract, in particular cystitis and colitis.
Recipes of folk remedies from the cuff:
- For cystitis - pour 35 g of the plant into 350 ml of boiling water, let it brew for several hours, take ⅟₂ tbsp. three times a day with 1 tbsp. l. honey for 1 month.
- For colitis - 20 g of herb pour 1 tbsp. boiling water, set aside for 2 hours, strain, drink ⅟₄ st. three times a day.
Testosterone lowering herbs
Oats help to reduce the synthesis of androgenic hormone. Washed and peeled oats should be poured with distilled water and insisted for at least 12 hours. Then boil over low heat for about half an hour, adding a little water when it boils. The softened oats are crushed in a blender or mortar, the resulting jelly is consumed in 3 tbsp. in a day. To normalize the hormonal background, it is also recommended to drink jelly with a glass of mint broth.
Flaxseed contains a large amount of omega-3 fatty acids, which have a strong anti-inflammatory effect. In addition, they contain a special substance - lignan, which can stimulate the production of estrogen. Thus, lignans can lower blood testosterone levels by slowing down the conversion of testosterone to its active form, dihydrotestosterone. Ground flaxseed is best absorbed. It can also be consumed separately, washed down with water or added to muesli, yogurt, porridge.
Herbal teas for women
Herbal teas with female herbs
Phytotea Organic Herbs Red Brush 30g
It has a number of properties that make it an excellent tool for combating female diseases of the genital area. This is an excellent remedy, both for douching and for use as a medicine inside.
Phytotea Organic Herbs Uterus Borovaya 30g
Improves the functional state of the genitourinary system, effective in the treatment of fibroids, myomas, adhesions, delayed menstruation, bleeding.
Phytotea Organic Herbs Femofit No. 1 filter bags 1, 5g No. 20
Improves the functioning of the reproductive system, the condition of the female body during the period of illness (cystitis, inflammatory processes in the pelvic organs). Can be taken to prevent female diseases.
Phytotea Organic Herbs Femofit №2 filter bags 1, 5g №20
Comprehensively affects the genitourinary system, supports the immune system, helps to cope with disorders and inflammations of the internal reproductive organs, helps to cope with menstrual irregularities.
Phytotea Organic Herbs Calendula 50g
Effective for liver, skin, oral cavity, and cardiovascular system problems. It has anti-inflammatory, wound healing, antiviral and antimicrobial properties.
Chamomile infusions and decoctions are the most useful herbal teas for our body. They are used for painful menstruation, uterine bleeding, gynecological diseases, stomach problems, digestion and other ailments. Chamomile has long been known to us as a medicinal plant that can be used by both adults and children. It is used for allergies, conjunctivitis, for baths and rinses with a sore throat. In addition, a collection of herbs, including chamomile, is used to calm the nervous system and maintain the overall tone of the body.
1 tbsp. a spoonful of chamomile flowers pour 250 ml of boiling water. Insist 20 minutes. Take 1 tbsp. spoon 4 times a day.
St. John's wort.
St. John's wort is recommended for the health of the nervous system. It contains a special substance cineole, which helps in normalizing sleep, fights insomnia, including during periods of stress and depression. St. John's wort was once called the cure for all diseases, because it treats everything from insomnia to muscle spasms. Due to the content of plant alkaloids, St. John's wort helps in the fight against neuroses and depressive disorders, it is included in the category of the best remedies for neuroses. The content of azulene enhances the positive effect of the plant on the nervous system, and also accelerates tissue regeneration.
One of the perennial plants of the genus Peony, which effectively saves the body from nerves, stress and fatigue. Regular use of the tincture of evasive peony helps to improve metabolic processes in the body and cleanse toxins. The ability of this nutraceutical to produce endorphins, better known to us as the hormone of happiness, also brings benefits. Therefore, peony tincture improves mood, removes headaches and migraines, and helps to cope with nervousness. It effectively eliminates the feeling of anxiety and anxiety, helps with insomnia.
Maryin root is used to treat "women's" problems. It helps to cure mastopathy, infertility, erosion and fibroids, and is also effective for uterine bleeding. Peony root tincture is recommended for the treatment of impotence. Another way to use the root is as a tonic for acne and pimples. It relieves the skin of oily sheen, helps with eczema.
Sage is able to stimulate the female libido. It is also used to prevent cancer of the cervix and body of the uterus, breast, skin and intestines. Sage has strong anti-inflammatory properties and is used to treat pelvic infections. Decoctions of this herb are used to prepare baths for thrush, cystitis, irritation and itching.
Sage tincture when taken orally increases the tone of the uterus, so it should not be used by pregnant women because of the increased likelihood of miscarriage. During lactation, sage reduces milk production, it is effectively used to smoothly complete the lactation process.
In men, herbal tea helps to increase testosterone production, normalize blood circulation and metabolism, and stimulates the formation of seminal fluid. It increases male strength, prevents prostate diseases, stimulates sexual desire, and is a natural pathogen. Extremely useful in preparation for conception.
This is the most famous herb for men in Ayurveda and is a natural aphrodisiac. It greatly increases blood flow to the genital area and increases sexual desire. Ashwagandha contains exciting components, but at the same time it can increase blood pressure, so hypertensive patients need to be careful when taking it. Ashwagandha is an Indian folk remedy for improving arousal, it relieves the symptoms of chronic fatigue, is an antidepressant and a natural tonic.
The plant helps to maintain the level of female hormones, has a beneficial effect on the reproductive system. Shatavari is included in such a group of drugs as aphrodisiacs for women. Although asparagus racemos is primarily a plant for women's health, it is also considered useful for increasing potency in men.
A decoction of crushed fresh shataravi roots is considered the most effective, although it can be taken in the form of tablets. The plant showed high efficiency in the fight against unpleasant symptoms of menopause. Therefore, shatavari is recommended for women after 40 to maintain the tone and overall health of the reproductive system.
Only Peace of Mind: Natural Remedies to Reduce Anxiety
While pharmaceutical science and medical technology are constantly surprising with new advances, confidence in natural healing products has not waned in the slightest. On the contrary, the popularity of health products that have helped our ancestors for centuries is growing by leaps and bounds - we want to know everything about the miraculous power of Ayurvedic herbs, aromatherapy, qigong exercises and paleo diets.
The most sought after are remedies that can calm frayed nerves and reduce anxiety, a trendy ailment that, as it turns out, has knocked down almost everyone. And with all the wealth of drugs that guarantee indifference to stress, no psychotherapist will dispute the benefits of chamomile tea, lavender oil, or meditation, which help to cope with anxiety, and with pleasure. Let it be just a placebo effect - but it works!
Our "nature's first aid kit" contains an arsenal of nine natural anti-stress remedies that you should keep in mind when your nerves fail.
1. Protein-rich breakfast
First thing! Since a drop in blood glucose is accompanied by symptoms similar to anxiety, doctors advise eating on a schedule and starting the day with a high-protein breakfast to keep glucose levels stable. For the same reason, it is recommended to snack on nuts (almonds, hazelnuts and walnuts) and constantly include legumes, fish and leafy greens (everything you like from spinach to arugula) in the menu.
2. Regular exercise
Movement is life, remember? Sports bring a lot of benefits to physical, emotional and mental health. According to the findings of the American Anxiety and Depression Association, regular exercise helps to overcome stress, and even one active session (aerobics or weight training) relieves anxiety symptoms for several hours.
It doesn't hurt to consult a doctor, because not every herbal remedy works for everyone in a positive way - allergies or unpredictable reactions with the opposite effect are possible. However, there are several phytochites that have long been known in folk medicine. Topping the list is Rhodiola rosea (known as golden or rose root), an extremely effective adaptogen that boosts the immune system and is guaranteed to reduce symptoms of anxiety and fatigue. Those suffering from insomnia should try an infusion of passionflower (aka passionflower, or passion fruit when ripe to fruit state), which, despite the name, will help calm down and fall asleep. And, of course, motherwort and chamomile, scientifically proven facts can significantly reduce the symptoms of anxiety disorder - up to a severe degree.
4. B12, Omega-3 and others
Deficiencies in vitamin D, B12, omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids and magnesium can affect anxiety. Consult with a specialist and order vitamins and supplements in the dosage you need - for example, on iHerb.com (when choosing brands, read the reviews of experienced buyers). And don't forget about foods rich in the above nutrients: salmon is a great source of vitamin D, vitamin B12, and omega-3s, while green vegetables, beans, oatmeal, and nuts help combat magnesium deficiency.
5. Essential Oils
Excellent sleep, stress relief and relaxation natural oils used topically and in aromatherapy. Lavender-lemon balm and peppermint oil work especially well if something a little more stimulating is needed. This is not a shamanistic promotion or a marketing gimmick - research confirms that the aroma of lavender affects certain neuroreceptors, triggering the same biochemical reactions in the body as some anti-anxiety drugs.
6. Spiritual health practices
If your mind spends most of its time imagining a bleak future instead of enjoying the present, you should turn to spiritual health practices like yoga, tai chi or qigong. In particular, yoga three to four times a week for a month and a half has been shown to help alleviate chronic anxiety disorder, which sounds serious. Just don’t sign up for a Bikram class right away (who knows how your body will react to loads in an overheated gym), but start with a relaxed immersion in hatha yoga.
Another way to bring yourself into a stable state of awareness is meditation. It is recommended to start at least with a daily minute of silence alone with yourself, focusing on breathing, in order to develop this useful habit. If you find it difficult without outside support, use the Headspace or Calm apps. Especially for residents of megacities - regardless of whether you are on the subway or walking around the city - try meditation by combining steps and breathing: inhale for five steps, and then exhale for eight to ten. Gradually increase the ratio, lengthening the exhalation, and you will notice that the anxiety subsides.
- Getty Images
You have probably heard that probiotics help to improve the skin and digestive system, as well as increase energy and strengthen the immune system. But what can they do about anxiety? The study of this issue is still at the research stage, but scientists have already found that the dosed use of probiotics reduces the level of anxiety in animals. Let's wait for more convincing verdicts, although in general the conclusion is expected: it's no secret that good digestion eliminates sad thoughts.
9. Healthy sleep
The connection between anxiety and insomnia is known: brain regions that regulate emotions and help you stay calm are very sensitive to lack of sleep.