Want to Reduce Stress in Your 60s? Here’s How to Beat Anxiety with Herbal Medicines
If you regularly feel apprehensive or panicky, or experience feelings of dread, you could have general anxiety disorder in which you worry excessively about a number of everyday problems.
The diagnosis is made after symptoms have lasted for six months, but if you are always anticipating disaster and unable to relax through worry, it’s best not to wait that long to seek help.
We, females, are especially prone to anxiety, and we are two-and-a-half times more likely to be affected than men. This is partly due to the way our brains are wired up, and partly because of the effects of hormonal changes at different phases of life.
Many people would rather avoid anti-anxiety medications and prefer a more natural approach, combining psychological interventions such as CBT or relaxation techniques, alongside herbal medicines.
The following nutritional approaches are often successful, but if you are taking any prescribed medicines, it’s important to check for herb-drug interactions before taking an herbal remedy.
Valerian Root Extracts
The valerian root extract is traditionally used to relieve anxiety, promote relaxation and reduce the whirling thoughts that interfere with sleep.
Used in Ayurvedic medicine as a restorative tonic, Ashwagandha reduces anxiety and promotes serenity and deep sleep.
Rhodiola root extracts are traditionally used to increase resistance to physical and emotional stress. This is an adaptogenic herb that both combats mild anxiety and has an energising effect to improve fatigue.
Lavender is a well-known soporific when the scent is inhaled at night. But pharmaceutical-grade lavender oil is now also taken orally to treat generalised anxiety.
Cannabidiol Oil (CBD)
CBD is taking both the US and UK by storm. Cannabidiol (CBD) is extracted from non-drug strains of cannabis plants, known as industrial hemp, and added to an oil – usually hemp, olive or coconut oil – to aid absorption.
St. John’s Wort
The St. John’s wort plant is used to lift a low mood. It may be suitable if your anxiety is associated with depression.
Mainly used as an herbal alternative to hormone replacement therapy, black cohosh is at least as effective as conjugated estrogens for relieving hot flushes, vaginal dryness, depression and anxiety.