Although a nutritious balanced diet is key to creating a healthy mental state, incorporating the right herbal supplements into your wellness regime can really make a difference in how you feel in your day to day.
Supplement Aisle Decoded
But for many, just looking at the overwhelming amount of natural remedies can send you into a frenzy—What is that? What is this for? What's the difference between this and this?—and often times, you'll just end up leaving empty handed and even more anxious.
To help you navigate your way down the supplement aisle, we've created a list of the top five most effective natural supplements and adaptogens for overcoming anxiety:
Ashwagandha, also known as Indian Ginseng, is an important herb in ayurvedic medicine for mental and emotional stress. This plant is classified as an adaptogen because of it's ability to counter act the physiological response of stress on the body.
2. Passion Flower
Passionflower is a tropical shrub that has been used as a natural remedy for hundreds of years. It's mildly sedating properties provide a calming and relaxing feeling. Passion flower benefits include remarkable anxiety relief and has proven effective for those diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder.
It also serves as a great sleep aid for those dealing with insomnia and complaining of restlessness and exhaustion.
3. Lemon Balm
Lemon balm is a solid go-to anti-anxiety herb because it has been clinically proven to calm hyperactivity and improve concentration, better your mood and cognitive function, and act as a natural sleep aid.
Lemon Balm can be taken alone or in combination with Kava and Passionflower for a stronger effect.
4. St. John's Wort
St. John's Wort is mostly known for it's mood-enhancing capabilities as a natural anti-depressant, but it is also very effective in reducing overall anxiety levels, especially when caused by hormonal shifts such as PMS and menopause.
However, this potent herb can have unwanted interactions with other medications, so make sure to consult your physician before consuming St. John's Wort especially if you're taking any other medications.
Herbal and natural supplements have become a popular choice for stress and anxiety relief because of their many advantages over pharmaceutical drugs. These natural anxiety medications are much more accessible, have little to few side effects, and pose zero risk for physical addiction and withdrawal symptoms like commonly prescribed benzodiazepines such as Xanax.
5. Kava Kava Root
Kava root is hands down the best over the counter anxiety medication available—it's like a natural Xanax. As proven in a meta analysis of multiple clinical studies, Kava users reported significant improvements in overall anxiety levels and some are even replacing drug and prescription use totally.
Effects of Kava root are often compared to the effects of prescription drugs like Valium but without the side effects. You'll feel relaxed and clear-headed, with an enhanced tolerance for demanding or difficult situations.
There are many brands of kava root available, but extracts are preferred because they are more potent, the effects are felt much faster than a gel tab, and the liquid suspension allows you to microdose as little or as much as you need.