Anxiety and stress

Life can be stressful, and often when we’re juggling a myriad of worries, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the simplest of tasks. 

Usually it’s that uncomfortable jittery feeling rising up from the pit of your stomach in response to your nerves being on high alert that acts as the first sign of anxiety.

While this is a common response to a stressful situation (such as going for a job interview) the effects of prolonged periods of anxiety, if left untreated, can become much more severe, and in some instances, even debilitating.

Fortunately, there are many effective treatments available, however with prescription drugs often being the first port of call, many natural remedies – that do not contain unwanted side-effects – often get overlooked.

If you feel that anxiety has started to become a regular unwanted visitor in your life, here are some of the best natural remedies said to reduce its effects, and in some cases, even prevent it from occurring.

1) Valerian Root

Derived from Europe and Asia, this “wonder plant” has been used for thousands of years as a remedy to treat sleeping problems, disorders of the nervous system and headaches. Given its calming effect, it promotes relaxation, and sleep and can even fight off night panic attacks. It’s said that by adding just one teaspoon to a cup of boiling water a day can assist with nervousness and depression.

2) St John’s Wort

This popular remedy is used by millions to help with mood swings and anxiety caused by everyday stresses. While many people opt for the tablet form that can be bought from pharmacies, you can also boil and drink its natural form if you’re able to source it.

3) GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid)

The role of our GABA is to calm those firing nerves in our central nervous system. When your body is not producing enough of this powerful neurotransmitter (which can be due to sustained high levels of stress) you may start to experience increased levels of recklessness and anxiety, a low libido, and unusual behavior. You can naturally increase your GABA levels by eating broccoli, spinach, bananas, nuts and brown rice, and by drinking green tea, or by taking a GABA supplement.

4) Meditation

We can’t stress the importance of daily meditation enough. And for those who think they don’t have time or are too stressed to meditate – you probably need it the most!

If time is a factor, start with just 10 minutes in the morning before you get ready for your day; just find somewhere quiet and sit with your eyes closed and focus on your breathing.

Don’t judge any thoughts that come into your head, just let each one slip away with each breath.

If you’re new to meditation and suffer from anxiety, getting into a meditative state can take some practice – as you’re trying to do the opposite of what your mind is doing: relaxing.

But don’t give up.

We promise that the benefits will surpass your expectations beyond anything we can preach here.

Our tip: Start with guided meditations as these help center your thoughts and ease you into a meditative state.

5) Stop Comparing Yourself to Others

If your anxiety is caused by a feeling of discontentment – due to success, money or your even your social status –  these feelings are often magnified when you start comparing yourself unfavorably to others.

With the influx of social media sites over the last few years, this problem has been exacerbated because we’re now not only privy to the most intimate details of our friends, but to those of our distant acquaintances, too.

Our advice: Unplug from social media or restrict your usage to just once a week. Regardless of whether your neighbor’s life is really as good as it looks online, who cares!

Start focusing on your life and manifesting the changes you want to see.

6) Magnesium

Magnesium has long been used to treat stress that occurs from anxiety and fear. Research also suggests that it helps erase the negative programming from previous panic attacks by creating new brain responses that are not conditioned by fear and anxiety. Beans, nuts, whole grains (such as brown rice and whole wheat bread) and green leafy vegetables are great sources for those that need to increase their magnesium intake.

7) Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Another powerful supplement believed to reduce the effects of stress is omega-3 fatty acids. You can easily boost your omega-3 status is by incorporating flax, chia seeds, walnuts, cabbage and fatty fish (such as salmon, halibut and cod) into your diet, or by taking a fish oil supplement.

8) Chamomile Tea

As anxiety can often cause sleeplessness, this calming brew is best drunk in the evening before bed to help settle your nerves and assist with a great night’s sleep.

These are just some of the most effective ways to reduce anxiety and stresses from everyday life, however there are many other treatments you can incorporate into your diet and lifestyle – naturally.

If you know of any additional remedies that have helped you overcome feelings of stress and anxiety, please do share them with us below.