Are you anxious, worried about (pick one): money, health, work, family, love. Your heart is beating fast, your breathing is shallow and rapid, your mind is imagining disaster, and you wish you could just relax…now!
You may not want to try medication—at least not yet. There are many safe nondrug remedies for anxiety, from mind-body techniques to supplements to calming teas. Some start working right away, while others may help lessen anxiety over time.
Just a little help from me to you because I don’t like taking too many tablets J
Chamomile - If you have an anxious moment, a cup of chamomile tea might help calm you down. Some compounds in chamomile (Matricaria recutita) bind to the same brain receptors as drugs like Valium. Chamomile supplements for eight weeks had a significant decrease in anxiety symptoms compared to patients taking placebo. Trust me it works I drink Chamomile too!
L-theanine (or green tea) - Research shows that L-theanine helps curb a rising heart rate and blood pressure, and a few small human studies have found that it reduces anxiety. You can get that much L-theanine from green tea, but you'll have to drink many cups—as few as five, as many as 20.
Valerian - Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) contains sedative compounds; the German government has approved it as a treatment for sleep problems. Valerian smells kind of nasty, so most people take it as a capsule or tincture, rather than a tea. If you want to try it, take it in the evening—not before you go to work!
Exercise - Exercise is safe, good for the brain and a powerful antidote to depression and anxiety, both immediately and in the long term.
The 21-minute cure - Twenty-one minutes: That's about how long it takes to hop on a treadmill exercise you feel calmer after the workout.
Passionflower - In spite of the name, this herb won't help you in love. It's a sedative; the German government has approved it for nervous restlessness. Some studies find that it can reduce symptoms of anxiety as effectively as prescription drugs. It's often used for insomnia.
Lavender - The intoxicating (but safe) aroma of lavender (Lavandula hybrida) may be an "emotional" anti-inflammatory.
Hold your breath! - Ok, let it out now. To do the 4-7-8 breath, exhale completely through your mouth and then inhale through your nose for a count of four. Hold your breath for a count of seven. Now let it out slowly through your mouth for a count of eight. Repeat at least twice a day.
Eat something quick - Almost universally, people get more anxious and irritable when they are hungry. When you get an anxiety attack, it may mean your blood sugar is dropping.
Eat breakfast - Stop starving yourself because low levels of choline are associated with increased anxiety.
Eat omega-3s - Oily, cold-water fishes like salmon are the best sources of the fatty acids; a six-ounce piece of grilled wild salmon contains about 3.75 grams. Other good choices: anchovies, sardines, and mussels.
Stop catastrophizing - When you're attacked by anxiety, it's easy to get into a mindset known as "catastrophic thinking" or "catastrophizing." Your mind goes to the bad terrible really horrible just unbearable things and what if they really do happen?
Get hot -Warming up may be one of the ways that exercise—not to mention curling up by a fire with a cozy cup of tea—boosts mood.
Give yourself credit - Are you having anxious thoughts? Congratulations. You're aware of your emotional state, and that awareness is the first step in reducing anxiety.
This article originally appeared on Health.com.
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