Let’s face it we’ve all experienced anxiety at one time or another. Times can get stressful and anxiety can set in. That feeling of being worried, fearful, nervous can last for hours, days or even months. When we feel these symptoms our bodies are in a sympathetic state which is also known as the fight or flight mode. Cortisol, norepinephrine, and adrenaline are being pumped from the adrenal glands, and our heart rate, blood sugar, and blood pressure raises.
So what are some causes of anxiety?
• Hormone imbalances
• Caffeine intake
• Traumatic situations
• Too much alcohol
• Poor diet/lacking nutrients or vitamins
• Side affect of medication
• Thyroid issues, or other underlying health issues
When people experience anxiety they usually make an appointment with a physician to find out what is causing them to feel like this. Many times the cause is unknown and the physician will prescribe you with an anti anxiety medication and send you along your merry way, but there are natural alternative ways to manage your anxiety without all the crazy side effects.
1. Taking a natural herb like Ashwaghanda
Let me tell you this was my go to when anxiety was affecting me. Ashwaghanda is a herb from India also known as “Indian ginseng.” It helps bring the body back into balance and help lower cortisol levels. Ashwaghanda has little to no side effects, but it’s nothing compared to the side effects of conventional medication. I highly suggest taking a good quality Ashwaghanda supplement.
2. Deep breathing exercises/meditation can be calming it will lower your anxiety when done correctly. There are many types of deep breathing exercises, but I will share one with you that I personally do myself called 4, 7, 8 breathing. You will start with an exhale completely through the mouth making like a whoosh sound. Then you will inhale through your nose for a mental count of 4 seconds, you will then hold your breath for a total of 7 seconds, at this time focus on relaxing and clearing all thoughts and bringing your body back into balance, then slowly exhale through the mouth making that same whoosh sound for a total of 8 seconds. Keep doing this for a minute or 2 until you start to feel the nerves calm and your breathing slow down and the body start to regain its balance. Meditation is also helpful and you don’t have to be a pro at it, just find a quiet place in your home or at the park and just close your eyes and do some deep breathing, inhaling and exhaling from your abdomen first then the chest second. Clear the mind of any thoughts and focus your energy on relaxing and healing the mind and body.
3. Exercise or doing yoga which is really good for the body because it releases endorphins which are the happy hormones. After a good workout session you will feel amazing, and then you will start to look amazing which will definitely boost your mood and confidence. Even walking outside at the park for 20 minutes can really have a positive effect on you.
4. Magnesium is a mineral that we may lack, which is vital in supporting our nervous system. Magnesium calms the nerves, improves energy, and also improves sleep. This important mineral can be found in foods such as almonds, avocados, bananas, pumpkin seeds, dark chocolate, black beans and spinach. Taking a bath in Epsom salt which contains magnesium is a helpful remedy for anxiety relief. You can also take this in pill form.
5. Lavender essential oil is helpful in reducing anxiety. Taking a bath in Epsom salt like I previously mentioned along with 10 drops of lavender essential oil is very calming and relaxing. Hey, you can also read a good book while soaking in your bath.
6. B vitamins are essential because they have positive effects on the nervous system and brain health. Supplementing with a good compound of B vitamins can have positive affects on reducing anxiety. Foods that contain B vitamins include meats, whole grains, legumes, and nutritional yeast which I personally use.
7. Chamomile Tea is a great way to relax and calm your nervous system and it also improves your digestion.
8. GABA an amino acid made in the brain calms the nervous system. Foods that contain GABA include eggs, broccoli, walnuts, and mushrooms. You can also supplement GABA in pill form.
9. 5-HTP is another amino acid that is vital as it boosts levels of serotonin in the brain which is the happy hormone and also the hormone that promotes a restful sleep.
10. Change your thoughts with positive self talk. Many of us may become stressed from work or whatever the cause may be, which causes many of us to be in constant fight or flight mode. The brain likes to play tricks on you, don’t believe what you are feeling. Just like I said “it’s just a feeling.” When you change your thoughts it will also change the way you feel. We have a power within us that we need to learn to tap into. Positive self talk can change your thoughts. Instead of complaining about how bad your day is going, or how much work you have to do, change those thoughts into positive ones by telling yourself, I’m having a great day and I’m thankful to be alive and healthy, I’m a productive person, I take pride in my work.
Life is a cycle, what you give off is what you will get back in return. when you go out there and help people you will get the same in return. Tell yourself good things, you are worth it. We are all here for a reason and being good to yourself and loving yourself is vital for your well being. If you are sick and feeling stressed don’t feed into those symptoms, the more you Google your symptoms the more you start to feel worse, why? because you’re feeding into those symptoms and letting it consume you. Don’t let that happen.
Focus on the things you want and not what you don’t want. Tell yourself “I’m healing and I’m getting better and better day by day” forget the negative self talk “I’m sick, I don’t feel good, I’m tired, I can’t do this.” The more you focus on a problem the more severe it becomes.
I Just want you to know that you are not alone many of us suffer from anxiety because we live in a very fast paced changing world. Everything is changing at the speed of light, but we have to learn how to change our way of thinking and learn to live in the now and not worry about tomorrow or next week, just focus on the present.
I believe you will heal from this, focus on calming the mind and bringing your body back into balance.
Until next time,
I’m wishing all of you good health, happiness, and love.