7 natural remedies for anxiety that include essential oils, foods, and deep breathing exercises to help you be your healthiest inside and out.
In today’s high-paced world, stress and busy-ness can be overwhelming for anyone. On top of that, many people naturally struggle with anxiety regardless of their circumstances. It’s a real struggle that can be debilitating for anyone.
I love to find natural remedies for any kind of ailment as often as possible. I take great care to make sure I’m putting the best, whole foods into my families’ bodies, so it only makes sense to extend that care to medical treatments. In some instances, medication may be the best bet, but there are some non-drug options out there that can be helpful as well. If you or a loved one struggles with chronic anxiety or just bouts of anxious feelings, try these suggestions below. I’m certainly not a doctor, so you should always consult with your doctor before trying new remedies.
Chamomile. I am a big herbal tea drinker. It’s soothing and filling and so cozy, especially on a cold day. If you’re not into tea, you can also take chamomile as a supplement. As a warning, you should talk with a doctor before using chamomile if you have asthma, floral allergies, or are pregnant.
Exercise. This is probably new to no one – exercise has long been credited with countless health benefits, including decreased anxiety. The endorphins released through exercise can help improve mood and regular exercise can also lead to increased feelings of confidence and self-esteem. Take a walk when you’re feeling frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, nervous – you name it, exercise can help! It may not solve everything long-term, but exercise can have positive immediate and long-term effects. And stick with it – 20-30 minutes a day is best for maximum results.
Lavender. The scent of lavender can be very calming – have you ever wondered why it’s such a popular fragrance for candles? Lavender oil can be diffused to create a calming effect on a whole room, or rub a few drops on your hands or wrists and inhale directly. You can also apply a drop or two to your temples to help reduce anxiousness.
Deep Breathing. I know, it sounds kind of hokey, but the research and proven results cannot be ignored! The American Institute of Stress has a great write-up on the benefits of focused, deep breathing and a description of several different techniques. If anxiety is a common problem for you, building in at least 10-15 minutes every day to do these deep breathing exercises can be very impactful.
Mindfulness. Going along with focused, deep breathing, practicing mindfulness can help with anxiety. This can be especially helpful for kids – mindfulness is not something just for adults. If you’re new to mindfulness, mindful.org has some great tips. Worked in regularly, this can help control your mind and use it for good!
Omega-3s. Long credited for treating depression, omega-3s can also help with anxiety. Try to get them from food as much as possible – oily, cold-water fishes like salmon, anchovies, and mussels are loaded with them. Another reason to eat salmon?! I’m sold!
Diet. You’ve heard the saying “you are what you eat.” I’m not sure eating a cupcake will turn you into a cupcake, but the food you use to fuel your body can and will affect the output of your body. Sugars and refined carbohydrates can cause sharp blood sugar increases and decreases, leading to increased anxiety, depression, and fatigue. Too much caffeine or alcohol can increase anxiety symptoms as well.
7 Natural Remedies for Anxiety
In connection with all of these the more that I have taken the time to get to know myself, through a combination of reading/studying, therapy, meditation, journaling, and self-reflection, the more I’ve been able to find ways to help me be my happiest self. It looks different for everyone so taking the time to get to know yourself is a great place to start. I don’t respond well to clutter, a packed calendar, or skimping on my sleep. I respond really well to consistent exercise, time outside in nature, and making meaningful connections with people (which often looks like serve, making meals, reading to, and talking to people for me).
Get to know yourself! I hope this list can be a springboard into what you respond well to too.
I also made this fun Happy Heart Challenge: 50 Days to a Happier You a few years ago that you might like. It’s a free printable and challenge to get you headed in the right direction.
This is just a drop in the bucket, friends. Just as anxiety affects everyone differently, so will treatments. Try some of them out and let me know what you find. I’d also love to hear any others that have helped you – share in the comments below! As we come up on a brand new year, what better time to commit to mental health for yourself and others? Here’s to a happy and peaceful 2019!