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Natural Remedies For Anxiety and Stress

Natural Remedies For Anxiety and Stress

Anxiety is definitely a normal response to stressful situations. It helps people deal with things at the office, school, or any other place for that matter. However sometimes it can get in your way.

Anxiety disorders are common because the world is full of worries and tensions. Anxiety can get in the way of life.

However, there are natural remedies out there to help you. Here is a list of a few of them that will support you in these tough times:

1. Passionflower

This herb, contrary to its name, isn’t about love. It’s a sedative. It helps ease symptoms such as irritability, agitation, anxiety, and depression in many patients that take passionflower.

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2. Chamomile

If you have an anxious moment, grab a cup of chamomile tea. It just might do the trick to calm you down. You can also take it as a supplement.

In a Philadelphia study, GAD patients (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) who took chamomile supplements for eight weeks decreased their anxiety. So, why not you?

3. L-theanine (green tea)

Japanese buddhist monks could meditate because of green tea for hours, while remaining alert and relaxed. One reason is the ingredient contained in their green tea known as L-theanine. Research shows that L-theanine can curb a rising heart rate and high blood pressure. Anxiety is reduced in this magnificent process too. You can get a lot of L-theanine from green tea but you will have to drink many cups (anywhere from 5 to 20).

4. Hops

Hops is in beer, but you won’t get the tranquilizing benefits from it. The sedative compound is bitter and isn’t common in tea unless combined with mint or chamomile. It promotes sleep.

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5. Valerian

Valerian is another sedative that can help ease anxiety. It acts as a sleep aid for insomnia. Valerian smells a bit terrible but it works miraculously with sleep-related problems. Most take it as a capsule. If you would like to try it, take it in the evening, not before work.

6. Lemon Balm

Lemon balm has been used since the Middle Ages to reduce stress and anxiety. In a study of volunteers, those who took lemon balm were calmer than individuals taking a placebo. Start with a small dose, because too much can cause you to become more anxious. Lemon balm comes in many forms: tea, capsules, and tincture.

7. Exercise

Exercise is great for numerous reasons, including it’s ability to act as a powerful antidote to anxiety and depression. Exercising includes yoga, cardio, or strength training. Do what you like. If you like treadmills, use that. If you like taking a walk in the park, go for one. Any physical activity that makes you happy – go and do it. I have learned to do that also, and I feel happier than ever. No one can make me anxious, because I exercise it away.

8. Lavender

The aroma of lavender is intoxicating. In one study, Greek dental patients were less anxious if the waiting room was scented with lavender oil. In a study in Florida, students inhaling lavender oil before an exam were less anxious.

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9. Hold Your Breath

It is not recommended you turn blue in the process, but yogic breathing is shown to be effective at lowering stress and anxiety. Read about the 4-7-8 breath, exhaling completely through your mouth and then inhale through your nose for a count of four. Hold your breath for a count of seven and now let it out slowly for a count of eight – through your mouth. Repeat this twice a day.

10. Omega 3

Fish oil is good for the heart and perhaps can fight depression. You can add anxiety to the list as well. In one study, students who took 2.5 milligrams a day for 12 days had less anxiety before exams than students taking placebo.

11. Sauna

You can feel relaxed through a sauna. Sensations of warmth alter neural circuits that control the mood. Heating your body reduces both muscle tension and anxiety. Curling up next to a fire can produce these same results. Lying on the beach or sitting in a jacuzzi are associated with feelings of well-being and relaxation.

12. Forest Bath

It is known as a walk in the woods. Walking for twenty minutes can result in helpful body changes, especially in a forest that is beautiful to the eye. Forest bathers have lower stress hormone levels.

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13. Mindfulness Meditation

Originally a buddhist practice, it is now a mainstream therapy and can be effective in treating anxiety. Mindful awareness helps you experience each moment as it is rather than what is expected or feared. Pay attention to the present moment. Be curious. Attend withou judgement.

14. Laughter

Even a fake laughter gives you an instant hit of dopamine. Dopamine is a brain chemical controlling pleasure and reward in the body. Cultivate a good sense of humor. If you are too tense to laugh, use technology. Google phone apps for laughing. You will be pleased because you will have laughed off your horrible anxiety.

15. Schedule relaxation

Make time to relax. If you don’t, how will you ever find the relaxation you need? You have to make time for things that matter to you. Look at your schedule and do not be afraid to make changes to comfort your soul and yourself. Put in a half hour of just doing nothing but relaxing in a way that comforts you. Do whatever it is you find relaxing, and see how much better you will feel. Start by putting yourself first.

16. GABA

GABA is a supplement. It is sold online and in health stores. It can help calm down anxious people. Individuals who eat chocolate infused with GABA were less stressed when taking an arithmetic test than those that didn’t. GABA can interact with medications, so always check with your doctor before taking anything.

17. Face the fear

If something makes you scared, face it. Don’t back away. Instead, fight it with all of your force and conviction. Uncertainty will always remain a part of life, but it can be better to embrace it. Understand what you worry about, and then embrace why you feel this way. In this way, you will gain victory as you push yourself to do things that scare you, lifting your fears away from yourself.

18. Eat Breakfast

Never starve your body. A good breakfast can make a huge difference. Eat eggs, bread, toast, cereal, fruit – whatever will motivate you to eat your most important meal. You will feel fuller and satisfied.

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Ramanpreet Kaur

Currently a student but don't know what direction to go in: Let us see if writing gets me anywhere :)

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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