Though the ebbs and flows in life make anxiety a natural part of being a human being, for many people dealing with anxiety disorder chronically or during times of high stress, it can feel like a vicious cycle from which we can’t escape. Leaving our anxiety unchecked can impact our quality of life and even our physical health. For that reason, knowing ways to reduce anxiety naturally is important for your overall well-being, whether you deal with generalized anxiety or going through a season of intense stress. Keep reading for ways to reduce anxiety naturally and take control of your emotional health today.
Exercise has long been shown to boost mental and physical health. Studies have shown that people with anxiety disorders who maintain high levels of physical activity keep their brains healthy and protect themselves from worsening anxiety symptoms. When we get our heart rate up, our brain produces anti-anxiety neurochemicals like endocannabinoids, serotonin, and gamma-aminobutyric acid, better known by its acronym GABA. If you’re dealing with mild to moderate anxiety, the answer to your issues could be light exercises like walking, yoga, or hiking.
Limiting Bad Habits
While coffee itself isn’t a bad habit, consuming too much coffee is considered a bad habit and can exacerbate existing anxiety symptoms. Other habits that can worsen anxiety are smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol. Though these vices are tempting when stressed out and seem like a quick fix that will help your anxiety, in the long term, they make things worse. If you’re looking to quit but struggling, reach out to your GP for tips and tricks to make breaking these habits easier, and there are also many resources online.
Kava is a plant that has been used for centuries as a traditional ceremonial drink as well as an herbal remedy for other ailments. Drinking Kava juice could help your anxiety as it produces calming and relaxing effects on people that consume it. Many in the medical community have acknowledged it as a possible treatment for generalized anxiety disorder. A great thing about kava is it has been shown to be less addictive than some anti-anxiety medications and has even been used to help people battling substance abuse.
Though the sleep disorder known as insomnia is quite rare, most Americans report difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep through the night. When we sleep, our brains do a lot of restoration and repair, so when we’re not getting enough sleep, it makes sense that our mental health can suffer, which includes anxiety. You can greatly impact your anxiety levels by prioritizing a great night’s sleep. Avoid screen time at least two hours before bed and caffeine and overeating before hitting the hay. Some people sleep better in a cooler climate, so running a fan can make you more comfortable, and the white noise from the fan can help you stay asleep until morning.
Another herbal treatment shown to help with anxiety is passion flower, which has been used for over a century in the Americas and Europe as a calming herb for anxiety, insomnia, and even seizures. Passionflower can even help with stomach problems, a common complaint of those suffering from anxiety disorders, as our gut and brain are intrinsically connected. Passionflower can be consumed as an herbal tea, a tincture, or a capsule easily found in a natural food store.
Aromatherapy is a holistic healing treatment that humans have used for literally thousands of years. Essential oils based on natural plant extracts can promote the health and well-being of your mind and your body. Essential oils can be inhaled directly or added to your bath or an oil diffuser. Aromatherapy can help you relax, help you fall asleep, boost your mood, and even reduce your heart rate and blood pressure. Essential oils that best relieve anxiety are lavender, ylang-ylang, grapefruit, bergamot, and sage.
Other effective ways to reduce anxiety are practicing meditation and mindfulness, eating a balanced nutritious diet, mastering the art of deep breathing, and spending time with friends and loved ones, as socialization is an integral part of a human being’s emotional health. While anxiety can feel crippling at times, by implementing the above natural ways to find relief, you can feel like yourself again.