Alternative Treatments That Can Soothe Anxiety
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Thousands, if not millions, of articles and books have been written on traditional treatments for anxiety (i.e. medication and psychotherapy); however, not many people are familiar with the alternative treatments available for this condition (i.e. lifestyle changes, herbs, and meditation). How does anxiety present? Well, this condition is characterized by panic attacks, tremors, profuse perspiration (sweating), and an overwhelming sense of fear and worry. An anxiety attack typically causes severe trepidation, concern, and dread. The exact cause of anxiety varies, but it is believed to have a genetic, biological, and/or environmental component to it.
Most psychologists and psychiatrists treat this condition with a combo of cognitive therapy and psychotropic medications; however, as with other psychological disorders, these medications may not be effective for some people. In those cases, it is common to supplement a prescribed treatment plan with alternative or natural treatments. One of the benefits commonly associated with alternative treatments is that there are generally less side-effects than prescription anti-anxiety drugs. If you are wondering how alternative treatments can soothe anxiety, you have come to the right place. This article will provide you with the information you are seeking.
Listed below are alternative treatments that can soothe anxiety:
One of the most beneficial ways to soothe anxiety is to adopt a healthy diet (i.e. lean meats, whole grains, low-fat dairy, fresh fruits and veggies, and water). Why? Well, because a healthy, well-balanced diet can help reduce or cure, in some cases, psychological disorders like anxiety and depression. Moreover, these foods contain high levels of vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, and proteins, which can improve your health and boost your mood. It is important to note that a possible cause of anxiety is a vitamin B deficiency. A healthy diet consisting of: peas, bananas, oranges, blueberries, avocados, asparagus, leafy greens, whole grain cereal, steel-cut oatmeal, skim or low-fat milk, lean red meats, chicken, fish (i.e. tuna, salmon, etc.) and eggs can help reduce or banish your anxiety symptoms forever.
Yes, you can reduce or even cure anxiety (in some cases) with a regular exercise routine. How? Well, exercise elevates your mood (it causes the release of endorphins, a natural hormone that regulates moods), increases your energy, improves your health and well-being, lowers your stress and tension, reduces your blood pressure, and helps clear your mind. But most of all, it can help ease anxiety symptoms (i.e. panic attacks). Strive for at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. For maximum results, add another 30 minutes to your workout routine, bringing the total to 60 minutes a day.
If you opt for 60 minutes of light to moderate exercise a day, you may want to break your exercise time into two segments (i.e. morning and evening) of 30 minutes at a time. If you cannot exercise once per day, strive for 3 or 4 times a week. So, next time you feel an anxiety attack creeping up on you, take a brisk walk around your neighborhood or office building, spend time at the gym, jump on your own personal treadmill or elliptical, dance around your house to your favorite songs, take a dive in a pool, or join a fitness class.
St. John’s Wort
Herbal supplements are on the rise, and many people seek the benefits of these alternative remedies to treat their conditions. It is important not to supplement with herbs, unless you have discussed the option with your psychiatrist or physician. St. John’s Wort is a popular herb commonly used to treat anxiety, panic attacks, moodiness, exhaustion, insomnia, and depression. So, what exactly is St. John’s Wort? Well, it is an herb derived from an assortment of leaves and flowers (Medline Plus, 2015). This herbal supplement is commonly available in capsule form, but it is also offered in liquid and powder form. Some people combine another herb, Valerian Root, with St. John’s Wort for maximum benefits. Next time you feel anxious or depressed, pop a St. John’s Wort pill in your mouth – it will help you feel better in no time at all.
Another herbal supplement that is commonly used to alleviate anxiety is Valerian Root. As mentioned previously, this herb is sometimes combined with St. John’s Wort for maximum results; however it can also be taken alone. What exactly is Valerian Root? Well, it is native to Asia and Europe, but sold throughout the world. It is regarded as a natural, effective way to clear your anxious mind and relax your stressed body. More specifically, this herb acts like a mild sedative in the body – calming your brain, mind, and nervous system. It is usually available in capsule form, but it can also be found in herbal teas.
Banish your anxiety by supplementing with Kava Kava. What exactly is Kava Kava? Well, it is an herb that comes from a plant. Kava Kava is native to Hawaii and has been used for centuries to relax the mind and body. Some regard this herbal supplement as highly effective for a wide-range of mental and physical conditions, such as: anxiety. Why? Well, Kava Kava has a sedating effect on the body. In fact, it is common to experience the tranquilizing effects shortly after consuming it. This supplement is usually available in capsule form or it is mixed with water.
An often overlooked, but highly beneficial alternative treatment that can be used to treat anxiety is meditation. What exactly is meditation? Well, it a relaxation technique that has been used for centuries to alleviate stress, anxiety, and panic attacks. The goal of meditation is to calm your mind and relax your body. Meditative techniques may include: yoga, chanting, deep breathing, etc. A variety of instructional videos and guides are available to help you learn how to properly meditate. Whenever, you start to fret or worry, go to a quiet place, sit on a yoga mat or oversized pillow, close your eyes, and imagine a happy place.
- Dr. R. Y. Langham
Medline Plus. (2015). St. John’s Wort. Retrieved from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/329.html
WebMD. (2015). Kava. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-872-KAVA.aspx?activeIngredientId=872&activeIngredientName=KAVA
WebMd. (2015). Valerian. Retrieved from http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-870-VALERIAN.aspx?activeIngredientId=870&activeIngredientName=VALERIAN