Natural Solutions for Anxiety ~ Harnessing the Healing Power of Naturopathy
Updated: Oct 7
Anxiety is a natural human emotion, one that we've evolved to experience as a part of our stress response. However, chronic anxiety that remains unchecked can wreak havoc on our bodies, minds, and can impact our daily lives. In an age where a range of pharmaceutical solutions exist for managing anxiety, Naturopathy stands out as an approach that offers natural and drug-free solutions through natural remedies and lifestyle modifications.
By exploring holistic and natural solutions for anxiety, naturopathy aims to restore balance within the body and alleviate anxiety symptoms, focusing on the root causes rather than just treating symptoms. We believe there are situations where alternative solutions for mental health do exist and can be effective as a first point of treatment. However, if you are already on medication, a qualified naturopath can work directly with your medical practitioner to find the best solutions.
Anxiety is a psychological and physiological state characterized by excessive worry, tension, increased heart palpitations, sweaty palms, and other symptoms. It can be categorized into generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and several other types. Chronic anxiety can negatively impact our quality of life through our physical health, mental well-being, relationships, and work life. It can lead to isolating oneself from support, social and other situations, thereby possibly amplifying further the anxiety symptoms.
The Principles of Naturopathy
Naturopathy is grounded in the belief that the body has an inherent ability to heal itself. It emphasizes preventing illness and treating its root causes through natural methods, including:
Herbal Medicine: Utilizing plants with therapeutic properties to restore health. A Naturopath can create individually-tailored herbal remedies to address specific symptoms.
Diet and Nutrition: Promoting a balanced and nutritious diet for optimal health. Certain foods can trigger anxiety, mood swings and fatigue. Knowing what to eliminate and foods that can be used as medicine can be critical in treating anxiety.
Lifestyle Modification: Recommending changes in daily routines, sleep, and stress management to improve overall well-being.
Exercise and Movement: Encouraging regular physical activity to maintain health and alleviate symptoms.
Naturopathic and Natural Solutions for Anxiety
1. Herbal Remedies.
The herbs listed below are known to be effective in reducing symptoms associated with anxiety. However, a qualified professional Naturopath can identify herbs that can work in synergy and those that may be contraindicated with any medications you are taking.
a. Valerian Root
Used for centuries, valerian root is renowned for its calming effects, promoting relaxation and reducing the severity of anxiety symptoms.
This herb can help alleviate symptoms such as nervousness and insomnia, often associated with anxiety.
Well-known for its relaxing properties, chamomile can help in reducing anxiety symptoms, especially when consumed as tea.
2. Balanced Nutrition
Maintaining a balanced diet is crucial. Food can be our medicine and food can be our poison. Foods that are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, B-vitamins, and antioxidants can help in managing anxiety symptoms. Additionally, reducing the intake of stimulants such as caffeine, sugar, and processed foods can contribute to better mental health.
3. Lifestyle Changes
a. Adequate Sleep
Ensuring 7-9 hours of quality sleep is paramount for managing anxiety as it allows the body and mind to recover and rejuvenate.
b. Stress Management
Employing techniques such as guided meditation and visualization techniques, deep-breathing exercises, and progressive muscle relaxation can help in reducing stress and anxiety levels. A Naturopath can guide you through the most effective techniques for your specific situation.
c. Regular Exercise
Physical activity is a powerful antidote to anxiety. Aerobic exercises, in particular, have been shown to reduce anxiety symptoms effectively. Walking, yoga, pilates and spending time in nature can also be effective.
Conclusion: Holistic Approach to Anxiety Management
Naturopathy, with its holistic approach, provides a natural and sustainable way to manage anxiety, emphasizing prevention and addressing the root causes. Integrating naturopathic solutions like herbal remedies, a balanced diet, adequate sleep, stress reduction techniques, and regular exercise can significantly mitigate anxiety symptoms and improve overall well-being.
However, it is essential to consult with a qualified healthcare or naturopathic professional before starting any new treatment or therapy, especially for those who are currently on medication or have underlying health conditions. Balancing naturopathic remedies with conventional medicine, when necessary, can offer a comprehensive approach to managing anxiety and enhancing the quality of life.
Our Naturopath, Keri Hogarth, has over 25 years experience as a Naturopath, Nutritionist and Practitioner of Herbal Medicine. She also is a teacher of Yoga Therapy. She is currently available in clinic on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.