Anxiety refers to a state of nervousness, worry, apprehension, or fear. Anxiety is a normal reaction to stressful circumstances, as it can improve focus and performance in a tense situation. When anxiety is excessive, however, it can induce physical symptoms such as high blood pressure, heart palpitations, chest pain, nausea or headache. If chronic, anxiety can be emotionally disabling, and compromise immune and digestive function. Correcting underlying imbalances may significantly lessen its severity.
- Imbalances in certain nutrients can exacerbate anxiety.
- Amino acids are crucial building blocks for important brain neurotransmitters that stabilize mood.
- Women are more than twice as likely to have anxiety than men, especially when levels of estrogen and progesterone fluctuate.
- Anxiety can also result from “adrenal fatigue”
- Immune reactions to gluten contribute to anxiety and depression in some individuals.
- Exposure to certain heavy metals such as lead can affect the nervous system, triggering anxiety.
- Individuals suffering from anxiety may lack essential fatty acids such as omega-3 EPA and DHA.
The beauty of Naturopathic Care is that it can address each of these possible contributors to anxiety. Through an individualized approach using nutrition, exercise, appropriate laboratory testing, botanical remedies, and supplementation to replete or correct imbalances, the severity of anxiety can often be greatly diminished. Making lifestyle changes is of upmost importance. In addition, learning coping skills and using relaxation techniques can also be helpful. Thus, I also suggest my clients work closely with a qualified counselor/therapist when anxiety is significant and/or pervasive.