Sweaty palms, jarring heart palpitations, light-headedness, sudden
difficulty breathing, stomach cramps, dissociation—
anxiety surpasses average nervousness. It is physical, exhausting, and debilitating. People struggling with
chronic anxiety often have issues moving through their day-to-day tasks and
are sometimes left feeling as if they don’t have control over their mind or
Anxiety is the most prevalent mental disorder in the U.S., affecting over
40 million adults per year. The nature of anxiety disorders varies widely and can be
categorized into multiple diagnoses
including general anxiety disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder,
obsessive-compulsive disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and
While many people experiencing anxiety seek professional help,
less severe cases can often be alleviated with a few natural solutions:
Natural herbs and supplements
Before pharmaceuticals, humans had to rely on raw environmental elements.
Consequently, there are a number of herbal supplements known to improve the
mental and physical manifestations of anxiety, stress, and panic.
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Ashwagandha, an herb native to the drier regions of India, North Africa, and the
Middle East, is one of the most powerful herbs used to achieve emotional
balance for those in distress. It’s proven to
lower cortisol levels by an impressive 28 percent
and is an adaptogen—a
substance that helps modulate the body’s response to tension,
overstimulation, and trauma. Ashwagandha can be ingested in the form of a
capsule or powder. It can be easily purchased from online retailers
specializing in organic, all-natural supplements.
Chamomile also has a
clinically meaningful impact on anxiety levels, and its use dates back to ancient Egyptian, Roman, and Greek cultures.
Primarily known for its presence in calming teas, a study using refined
chamomile extract showed an improvement in anxiety symptoms and
Physical activity can have an astounding impact on a person’s mental
health. The idea of
exercising can seem daunting
to a person in emotional distress, and it might even feel impossible during
moments of anxiety-induced physical exhaustion. In reality,
exercise increases energy levels, both short-term and long-term.
During exercise, the body releases endorphins, which
are hormones that supply a burst of energy and help increase your mood.
It’s these endorphins that produce the feeling of euphoria post-exercise,
often referred to as the “runners high.”
Despite the phrase, running isn’t the only exercise that produces this jolt
of energy and phycological improvement.
Yoga has been widely recognized
in the wellness community as one of the most effective physical activities
to reduce the symptoms of anxiety disorders, along with other movements
that engage the full body and focus on the alignment of breath and
A regular exercise
routine will also encourage higher quality sleep, a sharper memory, and
enhanced focus—three things that are often negatively impacted by chronic
Similar to exercise,
to improve the relationship between the brain, breath, and body.
Unfortunately, meditation can be especially hard for those with an anxiety
disorder. Racing thoughts, a common and persistent symptom of anxiety, can
be hard to shake during a meditation session. But the purpose of meditation
isn’t to erase these worrisome thoughts; it’s learning how to live
alongside them without fear or self-judgement.
Mindfulness-based meditation is the primary meditation method used in the
treatment of anxiety disorders. The practice focuses on learning to detach
from obsessive, intrusive, or anxious thoughts, primarily by concentrating
one’s awareness on the sensations present in the body at that moment.
Studies have shown that a consistent meditation practice
symptoms of distress in those who meet the criteria for anxiety disorders
classified in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and
Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).
While these natural methods can have a positive influence on those
combatting an anxiety disorder, severe cases of anxiety may require
professional medical intervention. It’s important to seek professional care
if anxiety symptoms cannot be self-managed. Anti-anxiety medications, like
SSRIs, can be life-saving, along with consistent counseling. If you or
someone you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, these hotlines
provide 24/7 support:
This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional
medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The information on this web
site is for general information purposes only. Always seek the advice
of your physician or health care provider on any matters relating to