Gold Coast Naturopath: Natural Treatments for mood disorders - Anxiety

27 May 2015 1:50 PMLicensee Person Gold Coast Naturopath: Natural Treatments for mood disorders - Anxiety

This blog in our series of natural treatments for mood disorders looks at anxiety and how natural therapies can help improve symptoms and causative factors associated with anxiety.

I would like to focus this blog in our series of natural treatments for mood disorders looks at anxiety and how natural therapies can help improve symptoms and causative factors associated with anxiety.

Often my Gold Coast clients ask what I specialise in, as most naturopaths I treat the person as a whole but I do love treating the nervous system. I have completed a diploma in mental health, which gives me a better understanding on the way the brain functions.

Neurotransmitters

Certain Neurotransmitters (chemical messengers in the brain) may contribute to anxiety disorders. Targeted NT associated with anxiety includes gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), serotonin, dopamine and epinephrine. I won’t go into extensive details what each of these do as it’s a little complex.

A balance needs to be met with these NT too much or too little can create havoc.

My favourite is GABA. GABA is knows as an inhibitory NT because it’s thought to hinder the activity of other NT and help ease anxiety. It slows down the neuron firing. Through correct lifestyle choices including regular exercise and meditation you can increase your GABA levels natrally; whereas caffeine and long term excessive alcohol consumption reduce the number of GABA receptors in the brain. It is also available in a supplement form.

Before GABA becomes GABA it goes through a conversion process from glutamine into glutamic acid with a huge assistance from zinc, vitamin B6 and taurine. If you are low in these essential nutrients your natural GABA levels will be low.

Natural treatments for anxietyHerbs for treatment of anxiety

There are many herbs that can assist anxiety from St johns wort, valerian, hops, passionflower, oats, zizzyphus, lemon balm and the list goes on. These are some of my favourites and are all used in different ways in different clients. What may work for someone doesn’t necessarily work for you.

Zizzyphus is one of my favourite herbs to use with anxiety – it is a traditional Chinese herb with a mild sedative action and a calming effect on the nerves and mind. It is great for insomnia as it calms your mind as you sleep.  In chinese medicine it nourishes the heart and calms the spirit – says it all really. The other great thing with zizzyphus is that it is safe to use when on other medications.

Nutrition for reduced anxiety

The most important vitamins in treating any stress related conditions include all of your B vitamins. B2 and B12 are great for the nerves. B5 and B6 are specific for adrenal fatigue and B6 for assisting the conversion for most NT. A diet rich in organic fruit, vegetables and protein is essential in good brain health.

For a more indepth consultation contact your Gold Coast naturopath at Petries Cottage of Natural Therapies.