Anxiety and panic attacks are a common health concern. The ages of affected people range from young elementary kids to our wise seniors. Anxiety seems to be across the board and a common denominator in many of my client's health struggles.
I will not tell you there is a quick fix, a silver bullet, or magic wand answer.
I will tell you there are some self-help triage habits you can put into place, now, while you work on the long-term lifestyle changes that will weave and create an inner magic of calm and bliss. Yes, I know, there is some eye rolling going on here. I cannot tell you often enough how you are in complete control of your own health: body, mind, and spirit. You have the personal power to make every change necessary to create vibrant health, inner calm (even when the world around you is spinning out of control - remember, we can ride the merry go round, we just don't have to get carried away with the ride), and radiant self healing.
Quick Fix Triage:
This is to help you get on with your life right now BUT please realize you need to work on the long-term solutions below for creating true, lasting calm.
- Teach yourself to deep breathe right now. Yes, right now. Sit, relax, and close your eyes. Now deep breathe way down low into your belly. Remember the "take 5-10 breaths before you knee jerk respond in anger" advice. It is a truth. Do this deep breath 5 times.
- Chamomile tea is a blessing. Add some passion flower, calendula flower, peppermint or spearmint, lemongrass, lavender flowers... there are many tea blends offered by many companies. Buy 3 or 4 and use a different one each time. This prevents developing resistance to the plant medicine's affects. (Teas: Yogi Tea Calming, Tazo Chamomile Calm, Traditional Medicinal's Cup Of Calm, Yogi Relaxed Mind, Yogi Stress Relief, Celestial Seasoning's Tension Tamer - this tea is in glued tea bags so cut the bags open and use the loose herbs to avoid steeping glue into your tea. How to steep medicinal infusions: click here.)
- Magnesium: this is a body, mind, spirit relaxing mineral. Think Epsom's salts baths. Try a product called Natural Calm by Natural Vitality. Available at Nature's Storehouse in Canton. The 2 teaspoon dose is 325 mg. I recommend 400 mg at bedtime. This is magnesium citrate and will assist if you are constipated. If constipation is not an issue, this could create loose stools. Pay attention. After 1 week, up the dose to 500-600 mg daily by using Calm in the morning and at bedtime. If bowel movements get too loose try using magnesium glycinate for part of your daily dosage. Magnesium deficiency is common in many people and contributes to tension and anxiety.
- Herbs Etc. Brand Stress ReLeaf tincture or gel caps. This is the link for the tincture because it has the reviews of the product: http://www.herbsetc.com/stress-releaf-1-oz/ I would buy it in the gel cap 60 bottle; 120 bottle if they had one!
- Create a habit of gratitude for everything. This is both an in the moment triage habit and a long-term lifestyle habit, much like the take a deep breath advise above. When we cultivate a true attitude of gratitude in our lives it helps to bring inner peace.
Are You Ready for Lifestyle Changes to Create Vibrant Health (and prevent & heal anxiety)?
1. Food is the foundation of your health. If you are eating a whole food diet you are doing these things for your body:
- Creating vibrant body cells that retain their level of health with each new regeneration of cells (degenerative disease, including anxiety, is a degeneration of body cell health contributed to by eating food that is not real, not whole)
- Feed your gut microbial population for health and well being. Whole foods feed the gut bugs you want living in your body and starves the ones you want to see less of in your life. The reverse happens with junk, packaged, processed foods.
- Feeding neurological health by creating healthy neurons (see cell health info above) and healthy neurotransmitters (those feel good hormones manufactured by your gut microbes - see advice above).
- I could go on & on about the impacts of whole foods on each and every body system. If you want this info; please, give me a call and we will chat.
2. Get rid of sugar and caffeine in your life. They both feed poor mood health. Sugar is a get rid of completely issue. Yup, bye-bye sugar. (I have a donation based online class to help you kiss sugar goodbye for good. Click & Scroll down to Sugar Addiction Be Gone.)
If you drink one cup of coffee a day, and it does not interfere with your sleep at night, don't deprive yourself of this pleasure. Life is about pleasure and the morning, calm & peaceful coffee ritual is a daily self gift.
3. Sleep, my friend, sleep. You know how much sleep you need to function at top notch capacity and feel happy and energetic. So do this! Keep in mind: sleep needs change with monthly cycles, seasons of the year, and your age. Pay attention to you and your individual needs and fulfill those needs! Lack of sleep causes stress. This sleep deprivation just feeds into the cycle of anxiety. Get off this particular merry go round ride. : )
4. Move your beautiful body. Exercise (that is not a dirty word) fuels your body with energy, feel good hormones, and helps you sleep at night. Move yourself outside so you get the added benefit of...
5. Natural sunlight (even on cloudy days): the sun does really recharge your personal batteries. Remember to get plenty of sunshine that is not interfered with chemical sunscreens. You need healthy levels of vitamin D, manufactured by your skin, to prevent anxiety. Be smart; don't overdo it and burn your skin but get out there and manufacture some vitamin D. If you need sunscreen for extended outdoor time: use a natural one. Chemical sunscreens are toxic to the very body cells you are feeding whole foods to create vibrant health. Why do counter-productive things in life?
6. Get your digestive health in order. You body needs a well functioning digestive tract to digest food and move nutrients to your body cells. Healthy digestive tracts have a gut microbial population that manufactures mood hormones that keep you happy and calm.
7. Yoga is a gift you give yourself to reclaim your body, mind, and spirit for a peaceful presence in this world. Any body, mind, spirit exercise will do here if yoga is not your thing: Tae Kwon Do, Tai Chi, Qi Gong... If you want to learn more about the benefits of yoga: go to your right on this page, type yoga into the search bar, and click. You will pull up many posts I have written about the healing beauty of yoga.
I have many more suggestions to alter your lifestyle and create vibrant health for anxiety prevention. Check out my WHOLE HEALTH LIFESTYLE page and make your sense of calm and peace soar to new heights.
My books below were written to support your path of healing.
Hands On Health is a lifestyle primer to support your making healthy choices across all aspects of your life.
Weaving Healing Wisdom is a book on mindfulness and how to create it in your life with activities, food, yoga, herbs, essential oils, and lifestyle habits. Jenny Morrill, of 3 Marigolds Mindfulness Consultation Services, and I co-authored this book. Enjoy with love from Jenny & I.
My work in this world is to support true health and healing for everyone who is interested in making personal Lifestyle Medicine changes.
Coffee & Donuts not currently available; publisher's issues.