Anxiety is the most prevalent mental health issue in America and yet so many of us are embarrassed by the effect it has on us. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, this disorder affects 40 million Americans alone and an astounding 1 in 13 globally. Though pharmaceutical options offer relief, there are many natural anxiety remedies available.
Explore these options whether you suffer from chronic anxiety or tend to find yourself overly stressed out from time to time:
Many studies and first hand accounts have noted that meditation does wonders for anxiety. Using apps like Headspace or Calm can be extremely helpful in getting started and staying on track. If you prefer to unplug, using mala beads is another option.
2. Valerian Root
This herb has a healing quality that helps to mitigate anxiety and improve sleep quality. It can be taken in capsule or liquid form.
The main purpose of yoga is to tire the body so you can calm the mind. Those who practice yoga often share that it promotes feelings of centeredness and reconnects you with your body.
Yogi or not, you can make an inversion a part of your daily practice. If you’re not a fan of headstands, lay on your back in front of a wall and raise your legs up to 90 degrees. Relax there for three to five minutes. If headstands or handstands are a part of your yoga practice, try holding your pose for as many breaths as you are old. It is said that having your feet higher than your heart soothes the mind and body.
Magnesium is a known sleep aid, but it’s also a powerful tool for anxiety prevention. Try mixing it into your morning smoothie or a cup of chamomile tea close to bedtime.
6. Talking about it
It seems counterintuitive, but talking about your anxiety can help put it in perspective. It’s scary to say “I’m feeling anxious” out loud but once you do, your anxiety will seem much less powerful.
This compound is a chemical by-product of tryptophan, the component of turkey that makes you sleepy. On top of making you snooze, 5-HTP boosts serotonin (the neurotransmitter that affects mood production).
8. Taking a walk
Anxiety can make you scared to move or speak. Push yourself to go for a walk when you sense anxiety coming on instead of letting it take control.
By applying pressure to your temples, the webbed area between your thumb and index finger, or the back of your skull, you can release tension and lessen anxiety.
10. Gratitude Breaks
Try and take a minute to think of 5 things that you’re grateful on a daily basis. Expressing gratitude reminds us of our strength and the healing power of love.
11. Get lost in a book
There’s no greater way to productively distract yourself than with a good book. Sink into a bubble bath with a page turner and feel your anxiety melt away.
This Eastern medicine fix is greatly impactful in reducing anxiety. The ancient practice seeks to restore the balance of Qi, an energy force that flows through the body. When you’re feeling anxious, Eastern medicine says that your Qi has been offset, but the insertion of needles at specific points on the body can help to restore equilibrium.
13. Ear seeds
This technique involves a small seed or metal bead being fastened to a pressure point in your ear with adhesive tape. Whenever you’re feeling anxious, you just hold down on the seed and anxiety dissipates.
Practicing these 13 tips can greatly reduce your anxiety. See which remedies resonate the most with you, and incorporate them into your daily routine for natural anxiety relief.
Alexa Ardeljan-Braden is a freelance journalist, blogger, content creator, and RYT yoga instructor with a passion for all things wellness related. When she’s not writing, Alexa enjoys picnics on the beach, Slim Aarons’ photography, rosé, Hollywood History, and Joan Didion.