Most people would agree that 2020 was a horrible year. Wildfires devastated California and Australia. It was an election year filled with all of the usual divisiveness. The killing of George Floyd by police led to a combination of legitimate protests and out of control riots. And, of course, there was a pandemic. COVID-19 wasn’t the only source of anxiety in 2020, and many things in and out of our control will continue to stress people out. Luckily, there are ways to deal with stress and anxiety. Exercise is often a great remedy, but people are exercising less these days for obvious reasons. With this in mind, many natural remedies that can help to either reduce or tolerate your anxiety.
Natural Products To Help You Relax
1. CBD Oil
Also known as cannabidiol, CBD is a natural compound that is derived from hemp plants. CBD oil usually contains cannabidiol suspended in MCT oil, derived from coconut oil. The oil is an important ingredient because it helps the body to absorb the CBD isolate. Without the oil, the CBD would be far less effective. There are almost 200 cannabinoids in cannabis and hemp plants, and CBD is just one of them. Companies are rushing to include it in everything from tinctures that people consume to pet products, shampoos, and topical creams.
While the compound is still being researched, there is evidence that it may have a medical use. This includes possible benefits to people suffering from anxiety. Just keep in mind that the FDA has not approved CBD for this purpose. Peer-reviewed studies are expensive, and drug companies are making plenty of money with anti-anxiety prescription medications, so they’re not likely to invest in studying a cheaper alternative. Still, CBD has a broad community of users who swear by its benefits, including claims of reduced anxiety as a direct result of consuming it.
2. Kratom Powder
As with CBD, kratom powder is not approved by the FDA for human use, yet it has a loyal community of people who swear by its benefits. Kratom powder comes from the dried leaves of the mitragyna speciosa tree, found in Southeast Asia and most notably Indonesia. It contains the natural compounds mitragynine and 7-alpha-hydroxy mitragynine. These compounds interact with opioid receptors in the brain to create feelings of euphoria, sedation, or stimulation, depending on the amount consumed.
People claim to have used it to get over their opioid addictions, replacing the dangerous drug with a much milder substitute. After all, mitragyna speciosa is in the coffee family. While it doesn’t contain caffeine, it can have stimulating effects, though people report the absence of jittery feelings that sometimes come with drinking too much coffee. Kratom powder comes in many varieties, and Malaysian kratom is often touted as a great natural remedy for anxiety.
If you’re not quite ready to try CBD or kratom, there are plenty of other alternatives that are considered milder in their effects. Chamomile tea is one such remedy. There is some limited data that suggests that chamomile can reduce the symptoms of anxiety in the short term. However, it’s not for everyone since it has blood-thinning properties. This can lead to excessive bleeding. In addition, some people will have allergic reactions to chamomile since it’s in the same family as ragweed and marigolds. Still, many people swear by its benefits and consume it in tea form on a regular basis.
4. Valerian Root
Another plant product that you can buy in health food stores is valerian root. It’s generally considered safe at low doses and is reported to help to reduce anxiety. As with the other natural products on this list, it is not approved by the FDA as a treatment, and there are limited studies on its efficacy. Possible side effects include headaches, dizziness, and drowsiness. In other words, don’t take this when driving or operating machinery.
5. Vetiver Essential Oil
There is a direct link between the sense organs in your nose and your brain, and some studies suggest that different scents will trigger different emotional responses in the brain. Lavender essential oil is among the most popular varieties, but vetiver is known for its calming properties. The oil contains the grassy extract of the vetiver plant, native to India. It smells sweet and earthy, and some people even claim that it works as an aphrodisiac. One rat study found that vetiver has anti-anxiety effects similar to the prescription drug, diazepam.
Start Lowering Your Anxiety Levels
No matter what solution you choose, it’s important to work on lowering your anxiety levels. This feeling raises cortisol levels in your body, which can be toxic and unhealthy. If you can exercise and eat a healthy diet, then do that. If you need a little boost, then do that too. You can try an herbal remedy to start, and of course, consult with your doctor before any important decision about your health.