This question has become increasingly asked in the last 9 months. I think we can all agree that 2020 has been stressful, overloading mentally, and has triggered some anxiety. Sometimes we need to step back to re-evaluate and sort everything out. To reduce or eliminate stress and anxiety we need to look at both psychological triggers as well as possible physical causes of symptoms.
As a visual learner, I find it very helpful to do a “brain dump” on a huge whiteboard or even the back of a desktop calendar to see what I need to prioritize for business, personal, and family tasks I want to accomplish. We can get very stressed thinking about all of the things we want, need, or must do so using 15-30 minutes to get it all out of our head can be such a relief as well as more manageable. Having an organized list with steps can help to eliminate worry because we have a plan of action. Mapping them out with realistic time expectations can allow for breathing room that things will get done so we don’t have to revisit them daily in our minds.
For some, living inside of the non stop chatter of the subconscious can be incredibly over whelming. An off switch or solutions are needed to feel in control. One physical factor I would like to educate on is heavy metal toxicity which can affect our physiological behavior pushing our biochemistry. We can find ourselves behaving in ways that are not natural to our nature. It takes over the steering wheel and the gas pedal causing symptoms.
Carrying around the stress of mental chaos can not only cause psychological overwhelm but it affects us physically in the following ways that intermingle. Here are some physical and mental symptoms of anxiety:
- Insomnia or excess sleeping
- Rapid heartbeat
- Susceptible to colds
- Tense muscles with aches and pains
- Chest pain
- Low energy
- Quick, shallow breathing or shortness of breath
- Increased heart rate or palpitations
- Sweating, shakiness or trembling
- Diarrhea or constipation
- Stomach Upset
- Frequent infections
- Loss of sexual desire and/or abilities
- Mind racing and worrying
- Angry, irritable, or restlessness
- Feeling overwhelmed, unmotivated, or unfocused
- Memory or concentration issues
So many ask “What can I do to relieve stress and anxiety?”
There are many modalities that help with the mind and body. Some physical practices you can do are:
- Deep breathing exercises
- EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) Tapping
- Exercise to release stress, increase oxygenation and beneficial endorphins while decreasing the inflammatory hormone Cortisol
- Eat with mindfulness while enjoying nutritious foods
- Watch a funny movie to laugh
- Cut back or eliminate caffeine as well as other stimulants
- Play with a pet or visit with a loved one
- Reminisce with friends
- Get a massage
- Schedule more sleep and relaxation
- Ask for a hug to release Oxytocin which causes a reduction in blood pressure, reduces the stress hormone Norepinephrine and can give you a sense of relaxation
- Create some art or do your favorite hobby
- Practice positive affirmations
- Journal to express your feelings or gratitude for what you have
While most of the items above a free, there are a few herbal remedies that are worth purchasing:
- Add in or increase your Omega-3 fatty acids. Studies have found a 20-25% reduction in anxiety symptoms.
- Green tea contains many polyphenol antioxidants that increases serotonin levels (a happy hormone).
- Take Ashwagandha as found in a wonderful product called Protandim which also can decrease your oxidative stress by 40% within 30 days!
- Ask me about 5-HTTP with Valerian root is a popular sleep aid that has a tranquilizing effect. It is the natural form of Valium which alters Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) receptors to lower anxiety. Check with your physician first to make sure it is safe and will not interact with any medications or conditions.
I don’t recommend Lemon balm as it is part of the mint family that is notorious for leaching aluminum from the ground.
Many of my clients have been diagnosed with anxiety by their physicians. If you feel the symptoms warrant a visit, do so, even if it helps to simply rule out a serious condition. If the lists above are not helping or eliminating your symptoms consider doing a Hair Analysis to see if they are triggered by a physical component or nutritional deficiency symptoms. Once you know what to correct, you can give your body the tools to heal and replenish the missing minerals that help to calm your body (Calcium, Magnesium and Zinc). Randomly taking them can do harm to cell membranes but when you know what is needed, and get the correct amount, it can be life changing both mentally and physically.
The sooner you start, the sooner you can feel like yourself again!
Copyright Scientific Nutrition, LLC 2020