Effects Of Anxiety Can Disappear Just By Doing This!

effects of anxiety

With all the uncertainty that everyone has been experiencing this year, one of the most common concerns that I have been seeing in my practice lately is anxiety. Experiencing the effects of anxiety, stress, or fear are not necessarily problematic if the right coping strategies are in place.

Examples of coping strategies and tools for dealing with uncertainty include:

  • Exercise
  • Creative outlets
  • Mindfulness/prayer
  • Proper nutrition
  • Acupuncture
  • Herbal support

Since we’re nearing the end of gardening season and I have herbs on the brain, I’m going to take this opportunity to talk about herbs. These can help calm the mind when anxiety gets to be a little too overwhelming.

Here are five of my favourite herbs for helping to calm the mind and ease the effects of anxiety.

lemon balm herb

Lemon Balm (Melissa officinalis)

Lemon balm or Melissa officinalis, is a great herb for bringing some calm. In fact, the great thing about lemon balm is that it can help address stress and bring a sense of calm typically without any feelings of drowsiness. This makes it great to use in stressful situations where you may want some calm but still want to stay alert. My favourite way to use lemon balm is as a calming tea. Most people find the taste of lemon balm to be quite pleasant so it tends to work very nicely as a tea.

If you have any thyroid concerns, take some caution when it comes to lemon balm as it may interfere with the production of thyroid hormones (1).

passion flower herb

Passion flower (Passiflora incarnata)

Passion flower, like lemon balm, is another great calming herb to use during the day when you may still need to be alert. The two actually combine quite nicely to make a calming herbal infusion or tea. Passion flower has also been studied for its effects on easing symptoms of anxiety disorders and has even been compared to pharmaceuticals used in conventional treatment of anxiety disorders (2).

Like any of the herbs mentioned here, it should not be used as a stand alone treatment for anxiety disorders but can be quite helpful when used in conjunction with other treatments.

chamomile uses

Chamomile (Matricaria recucitata)

Chamomile is a herb most people have heard of or have had experience with. However, this herb can cause some drowsiness so is best used before bed. While chamomile has shown to be helpful in managing symptoms of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (3), it also helps with digestion. This digestive aspect of chamomile makes it great for those with “anxious stomachs” especially before bed or after dinner.

My favourite way to use chamomile is as an herbal infusion or tea but it can also be used as a tincture or dried herb capsule.

Lavender Essential Oil: Best Uses & Benefits + Quick How To

Lavender (Lavendula angustifolia)

This is another herb that many people are familiar with. If you have ever smelled lavender, you have probably experienced the relaxing effect that comes from simply smelling it. While I generally do not recommend extensive use of essential oils because of the huge amount of plant matter required to make them, lavender essential oil is one that I make an exception for. This is because of its strong calming effects.

A couple drops of lavender in a diffuser, on a pillow, or in a bath can be quite helpful in calming the mind. Please do not ingest the lavender oil, use for smelling purposes only.

best natural herbs

Valarian (Valariana officinalis)

Valarian or Valariana officinalis is a herb that has very strong calming or sedative properties. This is definitely one that is best taken before bed as you may not have the most productive day if you were to take it first thing in the morning.

When it comes to trying herbs for the first time, I usually recommend an infusion (like a tea) or decoction (boiling the herbs) before trying a tincture (alcohol extract). Although all three are great ways to diminish the effects of anxiety, stress and fear.

Valerian is one of the herbs I make an exception for mainly because it stinks! I’ve heard the smell described as “sweaty gym socks” and “my son’s hockey bag that hasn’t been cleaned for a week”.  Therefore, consider yourself warned. Valerian is a smelly but effective herb best taken as a tincture or dried herb capsule, especially for a restless mind that keeps you up at night.

What herbs have you tried that help you calm down? Are there any I missed? Comment below!

Remember to talk to your Naturopathic Doctor or Herbalist before using any herbal medicine

References

1. Auf'mkolk M, Ingbar JC, Amir SM, et al. Inhibition by certain plant extracts of the binding and adenylate cyclase stimulatory effect of bovine thyrotropin in human thyroid membranes.
Endocrinology. 1984 Aug;115:527-34

2. Miyasaka LS, Atallah AN, Soares BG. Passiflora for anxiety disorder. Cochrane Database Syst
Rev 2007;(1):CD004518 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17253512/

3. Amsterdam JD, Li Y, Soeller I, et al. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of oral
Matricaria recutita (chamomile) extract therapy for generalized anxiety disorder. J Clin
Psychopharmacol. 2009;29(4):378-382 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19593179/

Best Essential Oils – These Are More Than Just Herbs

best essential oils

The culture of medicine is changing. There has been a huge movement in the past decade towards natural healthcare. We see droves of people heading to their local health store in search of natural ways to take care of their health such as the best essential oils. Of course there is always a time and place for modern medicine, but the two can work hand in hand.

Essential oils are one of the many options available to anyone looking for a natural alternative. While the mainstream use of essential oils continues to grow, oils have been around for centuries. The Egyptians used plant extracts for health and religious reasons. In fact, Jean Valnet used oils to successfully treat injured soldiers in WWII. Today we use these as simple and effective solutions for wellness and a healthy lifestyle.

Be The Healer In Your Home

For those of you who may not be familiar with essential oils. You may be asking yourself, “How can these drops of oil help?”.  Oil use is spreading like wildfire because more and more people are learning about research being done, and are finding out that essential oils are legit! Your life can be powerfully affected by these oils. Even if you don’t know much about them yet.

Essential oils are more than just herbs! They are volatile aromatic compounds that are up to 70 times more potent than herbs. Using essential oils may seem foreign, but with the right guidance they can be a simple and rewarding addition to every medicine cabinet. With proper use there are no side effects and they work quickly and effectively.

Click here to read, “5 Ways To Heal The Mind & Body By Using This One Oil!”.

essential oil blends

Best Essential Oils

When your child wakens during the night with an upset stomach, you can feel confident reaching for essential oils to settle them. Bug bites, burns and most common ailments and so much more can be supported with these amazing drops of oil. For example;

Peppermint Essential Oil

A single drop of certified pure peppermint oil can be all you need to tackle your next headache, digestive or respiratory discomfort, or maybe just your bad breath!

Lavender Essential Oil

Lavender is widely know for its calming and relaxing qualities. However it is such a versatile oil that it is also used for many skin conditions such as;

It can be particularly useful with sleep and stress. With proper dilution essential oils can be used for everyone in the family.

Lemon Essential Oil

Lemon can be used to cleanse and purify the air using a cool-mist diffuser. It is an uplifting and energizing oil that can help improve mood. Lemon essential oil can naturally cleanse the body and aid in digestion. When combined with lavender and peppermint, it can support those with seasonal discomfort.

Choosing The Right Oils For You

There are more than 90 essentials oils. Each of which contains hundreds of different compounds, providing versatile abilities to combat threats. Understanding their potency and safe usage practices is important for everyone just starting out. There are many resources about essential oils that can help you on your journey. But note that not all essential oils are created equally. So do your research before picking up your next bottle.

For more information, click here to read, “Have you heard of this miracle oil? You should be using it!”

You may also enjoy, “What Exactly Is Homeopathy?”