(NaturalNews) Living with anxiety is never easy. Situations that others can sail through without a thought can be crippling to someone with anxiety. The pharmaceutical drug regime has concocted an assortment of anti-anxiety medications, but many users report these drugs only mask symptoms, cause uncomfortable side effects and can even make the problem worse! Fortunately, there is such a thing as natural treatment for anxiety. It often begins with addressing the root of the problem and then tailoring a lifestyle and supplemental regimen for easing feelings of anxiety.
The true causes of anxiety often lie in a person's diet or lifestyle. Lack of certain nutrients cause neurotransmitter deficiencies that can in turn trigger anxious feelings. Your everyday lifestyle can also impact neurotransmitter levels and alter hormone balance, which can have a profound impact on your level of anxiety.
Natural Treatment for Anxiety: Diet
A diet swamped with refined carbohydrates like white flour and refined sugar is the recipe for anxiety. Instead, a diet should consist of a balance of high quality protein, traditional fats, unrefined carbohydrates and non-starchy vegetables.
Choose foods that are rich in nutrients. Vitamins and minerals are important for supporting the brain chemicals that combat anxiety. Low-fat, low-carb and low-calorie diets are generally unbalanced and are not recommended for treating anxiety.
Natural Treatment for Anxiety: Lifestyle
Managing stress and getting enough sleep are at the top of the priority list for someone with anxiety. A stressful, on-the-go lifestyle puts strain on the adrenal glands and lessens your ability to cope with stress. This can result in heightened anxiety even in situations that wouldn't normally trigger anxious feelings.
A lifestyle that nurtures adrenal health is important. Take up yoga, cut back on your to-do list, take a vacation, learn to practice deep breathing, avoid pushing yourself and never skip meals.
Natural Treatment for Anxiety: Supplements
Dietary and lifestyle changes can be difficult to make when you have anxiety. You may crave junk food, or you may have difficulty sleeping because of your anxious thoughts. The right supplements can not only directly ease your anxiety, but can also help you make the appropriate changes that will provide long-term help by treating the root of the problem. There are many supplements that can help with anxiety, but there are two that provide particular benefits:
GABA (or gamma-aminobutyric acid) is a calming amino acid that helps you relax and calm down. Taken on an empty stomach, GABA can provide almost immediate relief for anxiety sufferers. It can also help you go to sleep. Ashwagandha is an herbal remedy that naturally reduces anxiety and helps the body cope with stress. It is known in Ayurvedic medicine for its ability to restore vitality and energy. Scientific studies are just now revealing that ashwagandha may be as effective as prescription anti-anxiety drugs, but without the side effects.
Other supplements that naturally combat anxiety include the vitamin B complex, rhodiola, relora and tryptophan, among others. Depending on your individual deficiencies and metabolism, you may find some of these supplements to be far more effective than others. It's important to work closely with a professional experienced with natural remedies who can help you find what works best for you.
Elizabeth Walling is a freelance writer specializing in health and family nutrition. She is a strong believer in natural living as a way to improve health and prevent modern disease. She enjoys thinking outside of the box and challenging common myths about health and wellness. You can visit her blog to learn more: www.livingthenourishedlife.com/2009/10/welco...