Life these days has become so tight and hectic that stress is now a part of our daily lives. In the struggle of maintaining a balance between work and personal life we often get stressed. Mental stress leads to insomnia, anxiety, deteriorated work performance, irritation, headaches, disturbed sleep cycle, depression, type 2 diabetes, and depression. Stress induces all these health problems due to the excessive release of cortisol.
To alleviate mental and physical stress and relax people follow various meditation practices and medications. These fast-acting drugs that show instant calming effects have many side effects like the body developing a tolerance for the drug or addiction. This is the reason that people prefer herbal supplements. While trying herbal supplements in your day-to-day life you will get a chance to find ways to cope with your anxiety. Some herbs that are known to have relaxing effects on the mind and body are:
Lavender is known to have anti-depressing and anti-anxiety effects on both the mind and body. Its relaxing effects are not sedating. Some relaxing effects of lavender are:
- Mood upliftment
- Regulated breathing
- Reduced heart rate
- Reduced adrenaline levels
- Improved and restful sleep.
It is consumed as lavender extracts mixed in tea, lavender oil in diffusers for aromatherapy, and lavender herbal supplements.
Kratom is a herbal supplement best known for its pain-relieving, relaxing, anti-depressing, and energy-boosting effects. Kratom, Mitragyna Speciosa, is a plant native to Southeast Asia. It is marketed in various strains based on the place of its origin and its maturity or color. Kratom contains alkaloids that will bind to the receptors in the mind. These receptors on activation stimulate the growth of endorphins. And these endorphins work to relax your mind and boost a sense of well-being.
It is generally categorized as Green, White, and Red. Some of the strains most popular for dealing with stress and anxiety are Red Sumatra Kratom, White Maluku, Red-veined Indo Kratom, Green Combodia Kratom, and Green Vietnam Kratom. But the best red vein kratom for mental calmness is the most popular strain for its pain relaxation, mind-calming effects, and for promoting a feeling of well-being in you. Kratom is consumed in the form of teas (made from infusing crushed), powder mixed with foods and drinks, and capsules.
Chamomile is a flower from the daisy family. It is a popular dietary supplement for its various relaxing effects. Some common lavender benefits are:
- Effective pain management
- Restful sleep
- Reduced depression and anxiety
- Relief in skin irritation
- Relief in upset digestion
- And better wound healing
Chamomile is consumed regularly before sleep or when they are feeling anxious. It is available in the market in the form of capsules, teas, extracts, topical creams, etc. People who are allergic to daisy family plants are advised to avoid it. People with bleeding disorders, pregnant and lactating ladies should not use this as it may increase the risk of bleeding and miscarriages.
CBD is a natural substance that comes from the cannabis plant. Cannabis is a very controversial supplement and these controversies have attracted a lot of research. Cannabis has two main active compounds i.e. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD). THC is the principal psychoactive compound and CBD is a non-psychoactive compound. Due to the absence of any ‘high effect’, it’s quite popular and now legalized in many states of the US. CBD targets some regions in the brain and regulates the emotional response by changing blood flow to these regions. It has the ability to provide you with a sound sleep. Though there are many products, CBD capsules for sleep work the best among them. It improves the quality of sleep that helps you relieve stress by treating insomnia. CBD is also available in the form of gummies, tinctures, cookies, chocolates, pills, and topical products.
5. Holy-basil or Tulsi
Tulsi is an indoor herb that originated in India and now grows in Australia, West Africa, and Middle Eastern countries. Indians call it, ‘The Queen of Herbs’ for its benefits like immunity boosting, stress management, anti-aging, and detoxification. Basil is a powerful adaptogen, an agent that helps you manage stress and maintain homeostasis. Cortisol, the stress hormone controls and regulates physical, environmental, and emotional stressors. Tulsi, when used regularly, helps to maintain homeostasis. It is consumed in teas or tablet supplements.
Ashwagandha, like holy basil, is an adaptogen having effective anti-stress properties. It acts by lowering the levels of cortisol and soothing the nerves. Powder of Ashwagandha is consumed mixed in drinks. It is advised to be consumed in the evenings and not just before bed as the effects are stimulating.
7. Kava kava
Kava, a herbal supplement, is native to islands of the Pacific Ocean. People consume it in the form of drinks. The paste of its root is mixed with coconut milk or water. Kava kava is known to have various calming effects like anti-anxiety and sleep-promoting effects. It is advised that children under 18, people with Parkinson’s disorder and liver disorders, and pregnant women should not consume it.
There are other herbal supplements available on the market for stress relief. Before consuming any herbs you need to study the side effects and consume them after prescriptions. Stress and anxiety is not a single health problem, it starts and leads to various health problems. Adopt a lifestyle and supplement that helps you live a stress-free life.