You weren’t born with it.
No one is birthed with anxiety and depression.
I also don’t believe we just woke up with it one day.
Anxiety and depression stem from our experiences and situations we put ourselves in.
It might be fear, or worry. It could even be internal organ disruptions or diet.
And it metastasizes or shrinks based on how we continue to live our lives, and how we choose to treat the symptoms.
Let’s dive deeper into the different types and natural herbs and supplements to relieve anxiety. Because we can’t treat all anxiety disorders with the same supplements.
Believe it or not, there are several different types of anxiety that can cause all sorts of responses. Most people think anxiety is just anxiety and they can all be treated and dealt with in the same way, but that is not the case.
The different types of anxiety can range from very mind, to very severe. The top 5 most common types of anxiety are:
» Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)
» Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
» Panic Disorder
» Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
» Social Anxiety disorder
With these common types of anxiety comes a different way to treat them, because they all stem from something specific.
Let’s break these down a little more into what they are and what natural supplements can help to relieve the day to day struggles.
GAD is a disorder more common in women than in men, and is a state of constant worry or tension. Whether it be over situations, people, plans, future, it is hard to not excessively worry about small things. And it can be anything from yesterday’s events, tomorrows plans or what you are doing in an hour. It can be something as simple as when will you exercise, shower, eat, schedule meetings etc. This is the type of anxiety most people suffer from, and is also usually treated with medications.
I suffer from this type of anxiety. It stems from having a scheduled mindset. Everything needs to be planned out and organized in your head/on paper or you have thoughts that it wont go right (even though we don’t know what ‘right’ really is).
GAD can stem from diet, lifestyle, chemical imbalances, and even liver dysfunction. Natural herbs and supplements have been found to relieve feelings of GAD, what works is going to be individualized.
→Magnesium and GABA: for those suffering from chemical imbalances in the brain (such as a decreased level of excitatory neurotransmitters.
→Ashwagandha: increases dopamine receptors in the brain and decreases the effects of norepinephrine.
→Omega 3 fatty acids: for those low in healthy fats in their diets, adding in a simple supplement could relieve anxious feelings.
→Acidic foods: Kuan Su states “those who suffer from poor liver function crave sour foods. By eating these sour foods (lemon rinds, tart apples, plums with skin) can reset the liver, and help to naturally boost the detoxification process and allow it to fully function.”
→Relax: a lot of those who suffer from GAD are constantly on the go. Trying to do it all and be it all. If you take a step back and learn to say no, you may find your anxiety lesson as well.
OCD is a different type of obsessive anxiety, geared more toward rituals, fears, and loss of control.
You have probably heard of OCD in the form of someone having to wipe their feet 5 times before walking away, or keeping things perfectly stacked. But that is only part of it. A lot of OCD comes from fear. Fear of germs, illness, loss of control, threatening situations etc. Those with this type of anxiety often have depression because the rituals don’t bring them any kind of joy, they just simply can’t stop.
Unfortunately there are no herbs and supplements that can help this disorder. There are other natural approaches though:
→Cognitive behavioral therapy
→Diet: increasing healthy fats, decreasing inflammatory foods and unrefined carbs.
→Exercise: a great form of stress and anger release, and can also promote healthy sleeping habits
Panic disorder is a type of anxiety that causes frequent panic attacks and jitters. Those who suffer from this disorder may have a panic attack for something as simple as someone taking their parking spot. Their heart rate rises, their breath quickens and they start to shake. Some attacks can be mind, and some can be very serious and cause loss of consciousness. Panic disorder can also go as far as people thinking they are “crazy” or even refraining for the outside world in fear of having an attack.
Much like OCD, panic disorders also have treatments that are natural, but not necessarily supplements.
→Cognitive behavioral therapy
→Avoid drugs, alcohol and caffeine
→B Vitamins: having optimal levels of B vitamins is important. Without them it can cause signs of panic, nervousness, and emotional instability
PTSD is a well known form of anxiety because of its prevalence in veterans and those who have undergone extreme life altering situations. Unfortunately, there are no supplements or herbs that can treat PTSD. Therapy has been the best known treatment for this type of severe anxiety; by coming to terms with what happened to them, allows them to let go and try to move on. Some are successful, while some are not. There are also new studies being done for those with PTSD and removing them from the harsh medications. You can read more about it here.
Social anxiety disorder is when individuals stress, or panic, about being in situations with other people. This doesn’t mean they get extremely anxious whenever they come in contact with anyone. It could be anything from large crowds, meeting new people, public speaking, or even just your job.
Those with social anxiety may choose to take fast-acting supplements right before the situation that is causing them to be anxious, or they may want something for long-term.
→Short-term: l-theanine has been used for years to combat anxiety symptoms and is fast acting.
→Long-term: ashwagandha and rhodiola both have properties to decrease stress hormones and create equilibrium within the body.
There are other herbs and supplements that people have researched that could also help with anxiety. These include Kava, Passion Flower, Bacopa, St. Johns Wort, Valerian Root, 5 HTP, Camomile, mushrooms, CBD and much more.
Personally, I have tried a few of these! I have seen the best results with ashwagandha, bacopa, CBD and a high fat diet! Along with exercise and relaxation techniques, I have found these supplements to be extremely helpful for me!
Again, taking the natural route is going to be a lot of trial and error. What works for you may not work for someone else! So try something, and if you don’t get relief, try something else. My recommendation: even if you get extremely discouraged or overwhelmed by constantly trying a new supplement; its better than being addicted to a chemical formula that is only masking the symptoms and not treating the problem! Make sure you are exercising and eating a clean, balanced diet. You can check out my blog here for other natural remedies to relieve anxiety!
Questions about health, fitness or wellness? Shoot me your questions and I would be happy to answer them!
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