How can I reduce anxiety fast? - Top 5 Natural remedies for anxiety
Add a sense of calm to your life using these natural anxiety remedies
If you’re one of the millions of Americans suffering from anxiety, you know it’s not just “all in your head.”
You also know it’s not limited to feelings of dread or worry. It can result in physical symptoms like irregular heart beat, nausea, and shortness of breath.
So it’s no wonder Americans are flooding doctor’s offices seeking relief, and it’s equally no surprise that anti-anxiety medications are among the most widely prescribed drugs in America today.
But are they really the best option?
Unfortunately, those prescription drugs come with a laundry list of side effects that can be even worse than the original problem. Common anxiety medications like SSRIs, SNRIs, and Benzodiazepines can cause insomnia, sexual dysfunction, dizziness, blurred vision, and more.
Plus, if you ever try to wean off of them, the withdrawal symptoms can be harsh, resulting in severe anxiety and even seizures. They are also highly addictive when used long-term.
The increased severity in anxiety when coming off of the medication is enough to drive to countless individuals to stay on them for life.
Still, true relief only comes whenever you address the root cause of your anxiety.
In many cases, some sort of outside factor or interior imbalance has switched your natural, yet supposed to be occasional, “fight or flight” response into 24/7 mode.
That’s where the problem lies, and that’s where natural remedies come into play.
Let’s look at a few of our favorite proven ways to relieve anxiety naturally.
CBD oil has become one of the most popular natural treatments for anxiety in recent years. It is made from compounds found naturally in hemp plants known as cannabinoids, more specifically cannabidiol (CBD).
Unlike its psychoactive cousin tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it does not induce a high but instead a sense of calm.
Interestingly enough, we produce our own cannabinoids known in the medical arena as endocannabinoids.
To understand how CBD works to manage anxiety, we first have to understand what chronic stress and anxiety does to our body.
When we enter stressful situations, the stress hormone cortisol is released, which sends us into “fight or flight” mode. If stress becomes chronic, cortisol continues to be released.
This constant flood of cortisol essentially rewires your brain, causing some areas to become overactive and others to degenerate. In the process, neurotransmitter levels and their respective receptors change and not in a good way.
Researchers believe CBD’s benefit has to do with its ability to interact with serotonin - the “happy” neurotransmitter - and its receptors. In fact, CBD binds to the same 5-HT1A receptor that the common anxiety drug, Buspirone, does.
The Best CBD also works to bring a state of homeostasis to the endocannabinoid system, which is thrown out of whack by chronic stress and resulting excess cortisol.
As mentioned earlier, we produce our own endocannabinoids. These work together as part of a newly discovered complex system known as the endocannabinoid system that’s uniquely involved in regulating our mood.
Studies show that the Best CBD oil tincture interacts with its receptors in a way that improves how the body utilizes its own built-in endocannabinoids. Such studies show promising results for conditions like PTSD, OCD, social anxiety disorders, and more.
To learn more at our CBD Oil Blog.
Ashwagandha is a natural medicine that people have used to treat anxiety for years. Its benefit lies in its ability to help balance hormones associated with anxiety.
Several clinical studies show that ashwagandha helps regulate stress by lowering levels of cortisol (the stress hormone). It also helps prevent brain degeneration by blocking free radicals that so often induce damage to both the brain and body.
As such, ashwagandha is able to improve anxiety and reduce brain fog without the side effects associated with most anxiety drugs.
Click here to try our Organic Ashwagandha Supplement with added BioPerine for maximum absorption.
In many cases, anxiety is the result of a deficiency somewhere. Just look at the telltale symptoms of vitamin B deficiencies:
- Panic attacks
- Severe anxiety
- Brain fog
- Fast heart rate
Sound familiar? These are all symptoms associated with anxiety disorders as well.
That’s because B vitamins are required to manufacture neurotransmitters and deliver energy to brain cells.
B vitamins have been used successfully to treat issues within serotonin, dopamine, and GABA levels - all of which are implicated in anxiety disorders.
Vitamins B12, B6, and B9 are the ones most commonly associated with anxiety and depression. While you can certainly supplement with any of these, food sources are always best as they are more easily absorbed by the body.
Some foods rich in B vitamins include:
- Wild salmon
- Beef liver
- Leafy greens
Gamma-aminobutyric acid is a neurotransmitter with the potential to reduce anxiety and insomnia, though it plays a role in other health functions like blood pressure and reducing PMS symptoms as well.
GABA is produced naturally by the brain for the purpose of reducing the activity of nerve cells within your nervous system.
If epinephrine (aka adrenaline) is the gas pedal, GABA is the brake.
In fact, popular anti-anxiety medications like Valium and Xanax work by boosting GABA levels in the brain.
The recommended dosage to reduce stress levels is around 750 to 800 milligrams per day, but of course, you’ll need to verify with your doctor.
As an alternative to taking GABA directly, you can also supplement with natural substances like valerian root, which have been shown to increase GABA levels naturally.
We know you’ve heard this a million times, but diet truly is the foundation of health. If your goal is to eliminate anxiety at its root, then changing your diet is the place to start.
Food affects mood because the brain and gut are in constant communication via the vagus nerve, so an unhealthy gut equals subpar brain function.
To nurture good gut health, you need to eat a nutrient-dense diet that’s low in sugar and processed junk. Such foods damage gut bacteria, throw your blood sugar out of whack, and contribute to mood swings.
That means you’ll want to avoid baked goods, sodas, fast food, fried foods, processed meats, and refined grains.
You should also limit caffeine as it’s been shown to cause jitters and increased nervousness.
Focus instead on whole foods with proven anti-anxiety benefits like:
- Grass-fed beef
- Wild-caught fish
- Leafy greens
- Healthy fats
- Organic fruits
- Fermented foods
Anxiety doesn't have to dictate your life. If you’re tired of missing out on lunch dates with friends and ball games with your kids, it’s time to take action.
Fortunately, anti-anxiety drugs are not your only choice. For many people, they come with too many side effects to be beneficial.
Instead, try natural remedies like CBD oil (our personal favorite for its ever-increasing clinical studies), or try supplementing with B vitamins or ashwagandha.
Whatever you decide to do, take a closer look at your diet. Make sure you’re not sabotaging your efforts with processed foods that spike your blood sugar and destroy your energy levels.
Choose whole foods instead that include healthy fats like avocados and wild-caught fish to give your brain the omega-3s it needs to function optimally.