(Guest Article by Ryan Rivera)
Natural medicine offers and effective alternative to many prescription medications. In the case of anxiety, however, natural medicine isn’t just an alternative – the reality is that prescription medications are simply not ideal for treating something like anxiety. At best, they simply mask the problem. At worst they do nothing at all. But they don’t allow the individual to learn how to cope with anxiety separately, and they need to be taken every day to avoid some of the problematic withdrawal symptoms.
Herbal remedies appear to be much more effective. They’re powerful, and able to reduce anxiety, but they also allow you to learn effective coping strategies because they don’t alter your brain chemistry – they simply reduce the amount of anxiety you experience. It’s crucial that you’re also able to learn to cope with anxiety and stress, otherwise the medications (whether herbal or prescription) are simply dulling the anxiety, not really treating it. Only herbal remedies give you that opportunity.
Natural Anxiety Treatments
There are several potential ways to reduce anxiety. The key is either fighting the anxiety directly or getting some type of sedation to relax the body so that the symptoms are less pronounced. Some of the best natural supplement for this goal include:
Kava – Kava is perhaps the most effective herbal anxiety treatment on the market. The kavalactones in kava regulate GABA without affecting other neurotransmitters, creating a better and more relaxed mood. Unlike many herbal supplements, kava has received considerable research, all indicating that it is a great tool for anxiety.
Passionflower – Passionflower is weaker than kava, but may be preferable for those that want to avoid something as powerful. Passionflower has flavonoids that produce a mild sedation effect that is great for dealing with lower levels of anxiety. It’s best for anxiety management in those that simply want relief from some stress, and available in tea forms.
Valerian – Valerian root is generally used to promote sleep, but it has an interesting effect on anxiety as well. The key is sedation – valerian root doesn’t affect anxiety levels, but it relaxes the body in a way that few other herbs can. As a sedation herb it is best used at night (to avoid any problems with tiredness during the day), but the potential as an anxiety relief solution makes valerian a popular choice.
Magnesium – Magnesium is not an herb, but a mineral. However, many people do not get nearly enough magnesium in their diets. This has only been an issue in the last 20 or so years, when modern food preservation practices ripped magnesium from the diets of most Americans and Europeans. Magnesium plays a role in over 300 different processes in the body, and deficiency in magnesium has been linked to anxiety.
It’s always a good idea to discuss any supplement you take with a doctor, especially in the case of kava and magnesium, as supplementation can interact with other medications and those with serious health issues or alcohol abuse.
Still, when it comes to anxiety, it’s clear that modern medicine is simply not the best anxiety treatment, even beyond the potential side effects and long term issues of taking a chemical medicine. Prescription medications dull the anxiety, but don’t allow you to learn to cope with it or treat it. Herbal supplements and natural medicine provide you with the ability to control and manage your anxiety, so that you can learn to cope with it both with and without herbal supplements. That is why herbal remedies are far
more preferable as anxiety treatments.
About the Author: Ryan Rivera depended a great deal on herbal and natural solutions to control his anxiety, and now writes a website about anxiety at www.calmclinic.com.