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Anxious Buddies, Relax! Try These 6 Herbal Remedies To Regain Your Peace And Calmness

Anxious Buddies, Relax! Try These 6 Herbal Remedies To Regain Your Peace And Calmness

Anxiety comes in various forms and anyone could experience it any point in their lives. It is characterized by a number of symptoms, including withdrawal from social settings, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and phobia and usually can be heavily experienced during the teenage years than any other stages in a person’s life. If you are a teenager or a parent of a teenager battling with anxiety, you may find that there are various faces of depression and while it is treatable, often 80% of kids with a diagnosable anxiety disorder are not getting treatment.

In most cases, treating anxiety can be done through therapy and natural healing medications that will help one regain their peace and not totally fall into deep depression.

Along with herbal remedies, there are programs that will help teenagers better understand what they’re going through and better cope with it with the proper guidance from those who have had experience helping those who have been through depression. In an interview with Dr. Jeff Nalin, Psy.D. – Founder and Clinical Director at Paradigm Malibu, he shared that many natural remedies can help with anxiety. “There are a plethora of herbal remedies that can assist anxiety, the Adaptagenic herbs, (Ashwagandha, Eleuthero, Holy Basil, Maca, Ginseng, Rhodiola Rosea, Schisandra, Mucuna Pruriens) Sam E, Cava Cava and the combined use of Evening Primrose Oil and Fish oils, have all shown some degree of clinical success.”

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While most of these natural remedies were proven to help alleviate the anxiety, Dr. Nalin recommends that one must seek professional assistance when partaking them as these remedies do not necessarily replace proper and clinically proven to be effective remedies, “What is most important is to seek professional assistance and not self-medicate or self-diagnose, especially if you are already taking medication.”

Aletheia Luna, author and founder of self-discovery blog Lonerwolf, suffered from anxiety on and off for many years. She was prescribed with many types of medications including Prozac, Desvenlafaxine, and Loxalate. Aletheia jumped from one medicine to another, until she realized all those prescription medications only serve as a “band aid” that superficially numbs an mask her condition. When she was dissatisfied with the results of taking medication, she explored alternative treatments instead. Today we’ll look into some examples of herbal remedies and how they can help people regain peace and calmness.

Disclaimer: Consider taking these medications under the supervision of a professional. While some herbs are harmless, some may carry notable risks. Don’t rely solely on herbal remedies even if they were proven to be effective.

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Dr. Nalin further explains the importance of seeking professional help, “Speak to your doctor first. Residential treatment is an important piece of the puzzle for teen anxiety disorders. It allows treatment to happen in the moment, among their peer group, in a measured, supportive environment, creating an internal sense of self efficacy and esteem.This allows for change to be immediate and readily implemented, rather than something discussed in session and later implemented with varying degrees of success. Here at Paradigm we utilize a holistic approach, tailoring treatment to the individual needs of the client.”

Holistic activities such as Acupuncture, Aikido, Art, Drama, Music, Equine therapy, Challenge Courses, the Alexander Technique, Neurofeedback, Hiking, Salsa, Surfing, Paddle Boarding, Yoga, and Meditation are just some of the additional modalities Dr. Nalin recommends to full recover and release trauma and reconnect their sense of resilience, motivation and joy.

With these in mind, let’s explore some of the natural remedies which may be helpful in regaining you peace and calm:

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1. Ginger tea

Ginger grows indigenously in South China and also spread to other parts of Asia, West Africa, and the Caribbean. It is known to alleviate antidepressant induced nausea. Dietician Alice Mackintosh told the Daily Mail that ginger contains potent gingerol, which helps cleanse the harmful chemicals that our bodies produce when we’re worried, so ginger can help psychological stress. Becky Oberg, a freelance journalist, said her favorite ginger tea recipe is from Dominican Republic. The recipe requires a slice of one-inch piece of ginger, one quart water, one-fourth teaspoon of ground allspice, and one-fourth cup of brown sugar. All you have to do is boil the first three ingredients and simmer for 30 minutes before adding the sugar.

2. Chamomile

The leaves and flower of chamomile are edible. The German chamomile is the variety used in herbal medicine, although Roman chamomile is the true type. Anyone can grow chamomile, especially during spring because the plant grows best in cool conditions. Chamomile is commonly used as a sleeping but it is also beneficial to people experiencing anxiety as it improves mental calmness. To make your own chamomile tea, boil two cups of water and add a tablespoon of dried chamomile flowers. Steep for 15 minutes so the essential oil remains.

3. Rhodiola

It grows in regions with cold climates such as Iceland, Great Britain, and Scandinavia. The roots of this perennial plant are used as medicine in many countries. Rhodiola regulates the body’s hormones, protects cells from damage. Research suggests that Rhodax, a specific rhodiola extract, might lower anxiety in people with general anxiety disorder. Aletheia noted that she takes it in pill form at 1000-2000 mg.

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4. Siberian ginseng

It grows in Asia, but the varieties that grow in Siberia are more powerful when it comes to medicine. It can be taken as capsule, extract, or in powder form. Some take it for around 2000 mg to have its maximum effect. Still, one needs to research on the dosage because there are potential side effects with large quantities.

5. Golden Milk

It is often used in ancient Ayurvedic medicine. Golden Milk contains turmeric, the kind of herb which works as an antidepressant. The first step to make golden milk is to create a mixture in the form of paste. According to Oberg, here’s the right way to make golden milk: Combine half a cup of boiling water with one-fourth cup of turmeric. Stir it constantly until you make a thick paste, before adding one teaspoon ground black pepper. Add one teaspoon of turmeric paste to one cup of warm milk, one-half a teaspoon of sweet almond oil, and a bit of raw honey to sweeten.

6. Flaxseed tea

Flax plant usually grows in colder regions. The seeds (Linum usitatissimum), is often used in Austrian medicine internally. The seeds are generally safe for human beings. It contains healthy omega-3s and healthy fatty acids which help the brain function more effectively. As what Oberg said, you may use a teaspoon per cup of water when you have ground seeds. Then you can use two tablespoons per cup of water if you have meal.

When experiencing anxiety, one doesn’t have to deal with of these alone. It’s important to know that while you seek for herbal and natural remedies, there’s no better cure than knowing that there are many other people out there who have survived and managed to deal with the situation. Whether you’re looking to take professional medical help or join in groups and programs that will help you get a better understand of what you’re going through, the most important thing to keep in mind is that you’re not alone in this battle.

Featured photo credit: mpaola_andreoni via flickr.com

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Last Updated on August 15, 2018

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

Video Summary

Why is it important to train up our core strength?

There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

One Exercise, multiple benefits

There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

What will happen when you start doing planks every day

    1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

    Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

    • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
    • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
    • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
    • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

    2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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      Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

      Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

      3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

        Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

        4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

          Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

          A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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          A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

          On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

          5. You’ll improve overall balance

            Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

            6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

              Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

              7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                How to hold a plank position

                1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                  How to improve your plank time gradually

                  1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                  2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                  3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                  Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                  Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                  You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                  • Prolapse
                  • After prolapse surgery
                  • Pelvic pain conditions
                  • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                  • Previous childbirth
                  • Overweight

                  Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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