What Herbal Supplements Are Good for Anxiety?

Posted by WTHN on

It happens to the best of us. Our minds get heavy, or we just can’t shake those feelings of uneasiness. Is it symptoms of anxiety? If so, what’s the remedy? 

Of course, you should always partner with a medical professional to better analyze your unique situation. We want you to be safe + healthy. 

But if you’re looking to dabble in some at-home methods to improve your overall mental health, we suggest trying herbal supplements to see if they help relieve some of those negative feelings that sneak up on you throughout the day. Plus, these herbal supplements will also likely enhance your overall health. 

So, let’s take a look at the symptoms you may be experiencing - and look into what herbs + other supplements may be beneficial. And bonus: even when you feel amazing, these herbs can only add to your daily mood! 

Let’s dig in!

Herbal Supplements Are Not Medication

Even though we talk about herbs being natural medicines with a strong history in Ayurvedic medicine, herbal remedies are not considered medication or drugs for the purposes of regulation in the United States. The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate these supplements in the same way as prescription medications or even over-the-counter meds. Herbal supplements are considered dietary supplements, which don't require clinical trials or systematic reviews before they can hit the market. 

That’s why it’s best to always make sure to purchase your supplements from a reputable company, and consider talking with your healthcare provider before adding new herbs to your regular wellness routine.

Which Herbal Supplements Can Improve Mental Wellness?

A ton of natural remedies + herbal supplements can be taken to improve your overall health, and they’re all great for different symptoms. It’s hard to keep track!

Don’t worry, we’ve got a handy list of adaptogens for your next supermarket run or online stock-up. 

Here’s how the following herbal supplements can be used as natural tools to help you throughout the day: 

Ashwagandha

The name of the herb might be a little long + hard to pronounce, but it’s one of the easiest herbal supplements to add to your day. It magically eases + destresses the mind. And who doesn’t need that after a long, hard week?  

Chamomile

Ah, the soothing power of chamomile! It’s known to promote calmness after a stressful day. So, unwind with a good cup of hot chamomile tea the second you get home. Your mind will thank you!

Kava Kava Extract

The kava kava plant originates from the Pacific Islands. This powerful herb does wonders for improving the body’s mental health functions. In a 2016 study, claims signaled that this supplement can also play a supporting role in the body physically.   

Lavender

Need to self-soothe feelings of stress or restlessness? Lavender not only smells great, but it’s also known to promote calmness in the mind. Add a lavender candle to your workspace or use it in essential oil form before bed as aromatherapy. It won’t disappoint!

Lemon Balm

Working pretty much the same way as lavender, lemon balm is a great alternative. It can promote calmness to help decompress after a long day.

Passionflower

Ever wonder where passionfruit comes from? This amazing flower! While it’s easy to overlook a fruit’s flower, passionflower is known to provide key additional care for your mental health needs.

Rhodiola Rosea

This plant’s actually native to the alpine regions! It supports nervous system function, especially if you’re feeling restlessness from day-to-day events.

St. John’s Wort

To lift spirits + promote emotional wellness, try St. John’s Wort. This herb works best for alleviating feelings of sadness after a tough day.

Honorable Mentions

A few more herbs that are definitely worth looking into for mental + emotional wellness include: valerian root for restlessness, green tea to support the nervous system + melatonin for regular sleep.

Check Out These Vitamins + Other Dietary Supplements

Beside adding herbs to your diet or daily routine, there are a few other tools that can help. Make sure you’re getting enough of the following essential vitamins + additional supplements, as your body depends on a lot of different substances to function at its best. When your body’s healthy, your mind is too.

  • Vitamin A 
  • Vitamin B-Complex / B Vitamins
  • Vitamin C 
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Fish Oil 
  • GABA
  • L-theanine
  • Magnesium 
  • 5-HTP
  • Amino acids

Anxiety Symptoms

It's normal to feel uneasy or restless when dealing with stress at school, work or in relationships. But if certain feelings + symptoms become a regular part of your day, it may mean that it’s not just regular stress. 

Look for the following signs that you may have a type of generalised anxiety disorder or panic disorder, and consult a mental health counselor or professional: 

  • Feeling nervous, restless or tense 
  • Worrying about danger, panic or doom 
  • Increased heart rate 
  • Rapid breathing 
  • Sweating 
  • Trembling 
  • Feeling weak or tired 
  • Having trouble concentrating due to worry
  • Having issues sleeping through the night 
  • Having an upset stomach 
  • Difficulty controlling worry 
  • Avoiding things that trigger worry
  • Consistently poor sleep quality

Other Ways to Boost Your Day

You may want to add some extra mood boosts to your lifestyle. To get yourself into a fresh, positive new mindset, try adding (or eliminating) the following activities to your daily routine.

They can be game changers!

Take Time for Yourself

Self-care, or “me time,” is so important! Work can get busy and family can get on your nerves from time to time. Take it as a sign to take a break, even just a quick coffee run. Never underestimate the value of alone time.

Eat Balanced Meals

Believe it or not, food can be a factor when it comes to boosting mood. Artificial foods + flavorings may taste good in the moment, but they won’t have you feeling the greatest later on. 

Everything’s good in moderation, so be conscious of what you’re adding to your menu.

Reduce Alcohol + Caffeine Intake

Alcohol + caffeine can trigger different parts of the brain and cause mood shifts. If you’re already feeling uneasy or on edge, you might want to steer clear of these two for the time being.  

If consumed in excess, the body may adapt to new behaviors + routines that will then become dependent on the consumption of these beverages, which is not the result you want.

Get Your Rest

Ever hear that you need to get your beauty sleep? It’s a real thing! Sleep works wonders for the mind + body, so it’s important to get those restful hours in to restore + replenish  at night. 

Are you feeling depleted during the day or over the weekend? Put yourself first! It’s more than okay to slip away for an hour or two for a quick cat nap. You’ll thank yourself later, especially if you have the rest of the day to get through!

Take a Deep Breath

Sometimes when we’re super overwhelmed, it’s hard to step away from the situation or environment to steal a second to breathe. But it’s important to make time to breathe throughout your day. You’ll get whatever you need under control, but it’s doubly important to get yourself under control first. 

Try breathing in + counting to 10. Just a few seconds are vital for feeling better and getting your body the oxygen it needs.

Do Your Very Best

It’s great to remind yourself that doing your best is the absolute best you can do. Sometimes we push too hard or think we’re not good enough. Not true.

Understand that you’re constantly working to improve but it won’t be an overnight transformation. Your best is always good enough!

Accept That You Can’t Control Everything

Once you acknowledge this, so much of life’s daily trials are easier to accept + understand. Controlling everything is physically impossible. Let just a few things go, and you’ll feel like a major weight’s been lifted.

Welcome Humor

Your system craves a good laugh as much as you do.  It’s an amazing feeling that’ll have you forgetting some of your troubles, even if only briefly. Watch a comedy show or spend time with a friend who always makes you laugh. Laughter really is the best medicine, isn’t it?

Our Final Thoughts

With all of life’s ups and downs, it’s normal for our minds + bodies to get off track, which is why a little extra boost from natural supplements can help you in the long run. 

Your doctor might even suggest adding herbal supplements into your daily wellness routine based on your individual mental health + wellness needs. Listen to the professionals and your own body. 

You deserve to feel like the best version of you each + every day!

Sources: 

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/anxiety/supplements-for-anxiety#herbal-supplements
  2. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/generalized-anxiety-disorder/expert-answers/herbal-treatment-for-anxiety/faq-20057945
  3. https://adaa.org/tips