Anxiety comes in many forms and strikes at different times for different people. General worrying is what we most commonly call anxiety, but more severe conditions such as obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and social anxiety disorder are all forms of anxiety as well. Certain times of year, say around the holidays when we’re out of our routines and spending lots of time with family, may cause elevated anxiety. In extreme cases, medication may be required. But we can often curb everyday worrying with natural remedies for anxiety. Today we have a few suggestions that may take your mind off the worry and get you back to your usual self.
Herbal Natural Remedies for Anxiety
There are many herbal options that have a calming effect on the body. Most are healthy and safe, although do discuss with your physician before starting a new herbal regimen if you take prescriptions medications as there may be some interactions. Herbal remedies include lavender, GABA (gamma-aminobutyic acid), chamomile, green tea, passionflower, lemon balm, valerian and hops. Many of these contain essential nutrients and volatile oils that trigger neurotransmitter reactions that reduce stress and anxiety. By drinking these herbal teas, taking an herbal supplement or even smelling or absorbing them topically through oils, your body may immediately begin to loosen up.
Relaxation is different to everyone, but for those who experience anxiety, it is a great natural remedy to relieve symptoms. Scheduling relaxation before anxiety strikes can be very helpful, and of course making time for it when you’re already feeling anxiety is a no-brainer. Relaxation may come from meditation, spending time in nature, watching television, reading a book, deep breathing techniques, practicing yoga, exercise, gardening or getting a massage. Employ whatever ways you find therapeutic relaxation to your advantage to help address anxiety.
Warmth is believed to trigger the feel-good neurotransmitter serotonin. Soaking in a bath, spending time in a steam room, drinking a hot cup of tea, enjoying sunshine, and curling up by a fire are all great ways to heat your body and release this wonderful, natural sensation. This may also be why exercise gives you a “high” despite any pain it may cause. Next time you feel angst, try doing or sipping something warm for a quick fix.
Eat a Healthy Diet
When your body needs nutrients, many things can go awry, including elevating your anxiety levels. Keep your blood sugar levels stable throughout the day by eating a balance of protein, complex carbohydrates, vegetables and fruits. Omega-3s are a terrific anxiety-relieving nutrient found in many fish, nuts and oils. Also, don’t skip breakfast. Studies show that anxiety-prone people are more likely to skip breakfast. Stop the anxiety before it starts by eating healthily and not missing a meal.
Isolate Issues and Face Fears
Sometimes getting to the root cause of anxiety can help reduce future anxiety, even if it requires some uncomfortable soul searching in the moment. When you are faced with anxiety, try to determine what it is that is really bothering you. Sometimes we make up reasons for anxiety that aren’t truly the root cause. Dig deep to decide why you are worrying and what myths you may be telling yourself that leads you there. Try not to let other issues build on top of the underlying cause of your anxiety. Creating a catastrophe only makes anxiety worse. Once you know what the issue is, work on facing that fear so it doesn’t continue to agitate you and cause long term anxiety.