Saturday, September 12, 2009

stress relieving herbs

No matter how well ordered and happy your life is, there are times when everyone will face stress. The death of a loved one, financial crisis, any number of things can cause feelings of stress and helplessness, and if your body happens to be or become run down, it can be hard to cope.
But before you go to the doctor for a prescription, try the health food store for some natural remedies.

The first thing you should consider is a B complex vitamin. There is really no reason to take high doses of a single B vitamin. A balanced B-complex or a multiple vitamin/mineral capsule will work just as well or better.
B vitamins help maintain a healthy nervous system, and improve your skin, eyes, hair and muscle tone. They give you calm energy and can help ease depression and anxiety. Nature’s Sunshine has a wonderful vitamin and mineral tablet called Nutri-calm. A local health food store or neighborhood distributor can usually get you some of this wonderful stuff.

Kava Kava is another herbal supplement that is good for anxiety. It also has pain relieving and muscle relaxant effects. Heavy use of Kava Kava can lead to loss of muscle control and kidney damage, so don’t use more than suggested on the bottle. This herb should also not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding mothers.

Melaleuca sells a good capsule called Luminex. It contains a combination of Folic acid, Vitamin B12, St. John’s Wort Extract, Dried Griffonia Seed Extract. The bottle says it is a “natural alternative for promoting emotional health, enhanced mood and general well being.” This is something I try to keep on my shelf at all times.

Of course, most people know now about St. John’s Wort. Scientific studies show that St. John’s Wort is good for treating mild to moderate depression. It is also good for insomnia. Almost every store that sells vitamins will have St. John’s Wort.

Another thing to remember when you are under stress is that a good night’s sleep is when your body heals itself. If stress is keeping you from sleeping, there are several herbs you can try for that, too.
Once again, Melaleuca sells a good supplement called RestEZ. RestEZ contains Valerian Extract, Hops, Spearmint, and Passionflower. The bottle says “whether you have stress from your day or anxiety about the day ahead, RestEZ is a non habit forming supplement that helps you relax and have a naturally restful sleep. It’s the only formula that combines standardized extracts of valerian and passionflower with hops to promote relaxation and normal sleep patterns without day after grogginess.” This is a formula I keep here at home at all times. It works very well.
Valerian root alone will also help you get a good nights sleep. Taking a calcium/magnesium supplement is helpful.

There are many formulas on the market that can help you overcome short term stress, anxiety, or depression because of circumstances in your life, either short term, or something that is going to be around for a while. Try these before seeing a doctor, but always remember to read the labels and heed the warnings on any bottle of natural supplements before taking them. Even natural supplements are not without risk sometimes, and may react with prescription medicines you are taking. You may want to consult with your doctor first if you are seeing him or her for any kind of medical condition.


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