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Herbal Stress Relief?

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LisaReg posted 8/4/2013 18:44 PM

In addition to the crappy infidelity stuff I'm also dealing with a mom who has Alzheimer's Disease. I am feeling totally wound-up all the time.

I don't do medicines. Never have. Any good recommendations for natural or herbal stress relief? I am going to the beach this week and thought it would be a good time to start a regiment. I'm also looking into meditation. Thank you guys.

try something natural. T

[This message edited by LisaReg at 6:45 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]

solus sto posted 8/4/2013 19:26 PM

The things about herbs is that they, like their pharmaceutical counterparts, are, in fact, drugs.

They are not inherently safer, and in fact may be far more dangerous because of lack of regulation and standardization of dose.

One particular herb leaps to mind. For years, kava kava was touted as a great natural antianxiety agent. And it works really well for that.

It also causes liver failure in a disproportionate number of users, especially when combined with certain medications. It is no longer legally available in the United States but remains accessible.

My point is this: if you plan to use herbal remedies, make sure you talk about them with your doctor; they may be contraindicated for a variety of reasons.

"Natural" does not mean "safer." Quite often, it means the opposite.

ETA: The best stress reliever for me has been, hands-down, exercise. Outdoors, in sunshine, so that my vitamin D levels remain good. (That is actually something worth exploring with your doctor; many Americans have low levels of vitamin D, and it can contribute to anxiety and depression. Supplementation can help, but so can spending a few minutes a day in sunshine.)

[This message edited by solus sto at 7:28 PM, August 4th (Sunday)]

cinnamongurl posted 8/4/2013 23:27 PM

I would recommend looking unto aromatherapy. I dabble a bit in essential oils, and would suggest reading up a bit on the different types and their therapeutic properties. No drugs or pills to take internally, just a calming sensory experience. Off the top of my head, I would recommend adding about 10 drops of lavender essential oil to a small spritzer bottle and filling with water. You can use this to spritz on clothes, a pillow, even in the car, when you need a moment to relax and regroup. Then, using a diffuser of your choice, add a few drops of bergamot essential oil (also commonly referred to as happy drops) to some water, diffuse, and breathe deeply.

Also, yoga,exercise, and diet can help. Find foods that help to raise serotonin levels. Stay away from processed foods and white flours and sugars. These can make you tired and sluggish and depressed, and can cause your body a lot of unneeded stress. Highly processed foods contain no nutritional value and require a lot if energy for your body to break down and process. Also try and cut out caffeine, or at least cut back, try herbal teas instead. I like classic chamomile with a little unpasteurized honey and some lemon.


tushnurse posted 8/5/2013 08:27 AM

I second everything Solus said. Vitamin D deficiency is epidemic. I see it everyday. To keep your Vitamin D levels up, you need about 20 minutes of direct sunshine a day.

Melatonin can help with unwiding and sleep.
There are several essential oils that also have a calming effect, lavander comes to mind. Most common ones can be found at any local healthfood store. They can be pricey.

I worked with a gal that had a combo one that was called chill out or something like that , it had lavender, and several others mixed. She would put it on a tissue and rub her computer keyboard down with it, she swore by it.

solus sto posted 8/5/2013 20:02 PM

Melatonin can be wonderful, but it should be run past your doctor, particularly if you have had any worrisome breast or ovarian issues, or any Paps that were off.

Melatonin is generally safe, but has been strongly implicated in promoting growth of estrogen-dependent tumors.

For aromatherapy, I like the oils from Mountain Rose Herbs. But having a rosemary plant is perhaps the most therapeutic thing in my arsenal, other than exercise and sunshine. Seriously, there are few things in life that are not improved by breaking off a spring of rosemary, bruising its leaves a little, and inhaling. It is such a mood elevator.

[This message edited by solus sto at 8:04 PM, August 5th (Monday)]

InnerLight posted 8/6/2013 00:01 AM

Im with you, i dont do meds except in extreme situations. What helped the most was a formula by dr. Amen called NeuroLink for overall brain chemistry balance. It's amino acids and vitamins.

2 amino acids, Glycine and GABA act as relaxing neurotransmitters. You can take either one. They work best on an empty stomach.

Valerian is a muscle relaxant and sedative herb. A minority get more alert on it.

Hops is a sedative herb, but its very bitter. Passionflower is milder and tastes better.

Make sure you get adequate B vitamins and protein in your diet or its impossible to make a balanced amount of your own brain chemicals.

Whatever you try start with half the recommended dose to see how your body reacts first and then slowly increase to get the desired effect.

I suggest buying the book called the anti-anxiety food solution by Trudy Scott or the Mood Cure by Julia Ross.

Kava kava is easily available. There is an herbal tea called kava stress relief that is in health food stores. Kava is a lot safer than alcohol and many meds. Very few people have had liver problems with it and those that did were on meds so they don't have real proof that it was the kava that caused the problem, they are being cautious which is fine.

Properly prescribed meds are one of the leading causes of death in this country, herbs have no where near the number of fatalities.

I've seen more literature that says melatonin is used therapeutically to inhibit tumor growth and those w lower levels of melatonin get higher rates of breast cancer.

[This message edited by InnerLight at 12:02 AM, August 6th (Tuesday)]

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