Some of my simple tips for worry were shared in the April edition of Women’s World so here they are for you to enjoy in case you didn’t see them in the magazine. I’m quite chuffed to see it’s for a piece called “Ask America’s Ultimate Experts.”
I share tips about the benefits of a B- complex vitamin (for adrenal support), vitamin B6 (especially for PMS-type anxiety and worry, the calming amino acid called GABA, plus the mood-boosting and calming benefits of a grass-fed burger (loaded with zinc, iron and omega-3s) and pumpkin seeds as a snack (because they’re rich in both tryptophan and zinc)
Here are my tips from the article:
#1 Soothe with supplements
Here are some supporting articles and research for some of the above tips. A good B- complex vitamin for adrenal support has been shown to minimize psychological stress after a natural disaster and vitamin B6 (or pyridoxine) helps with PMS-type anxiety and worry.
A paper titled Pyridoxine in the treatment of premenstrual syndrome: a retrospective survey in 630 patients, reports the following results:
The daily doses of pyridoxine hydrochloride varied from 40 to 100 mg early in the study and from 120 to 200 mg in the later period of the investigations. The response to treatment was recorded as good (no significant residual complaints) in 40 per cent or more of patients taking 100-150 mg pyridoxine daily and in 60 per cent of patients treated with 160-200 mg daily. Together with partial response (useful benefit but still some significant complaints), the positive effect of the treatment increased to 65-68 per cent and 70-88 per cent respectively. No symptoms consistent with a diagnosis of peripheral neuropathy were reported
The calming amino acid called GABA helps with the physical-tension and stiff-and-tense-muscles type of anxiety and helps with worry and inhibition of unwanted thoughts.
#2 Tame worry with foods
Professor Felice Jacka, nutritional psychiatry researcher, discusses the mood-boosting and calming benefits of grass-fed beef (loaded with zinc, iron and omega-3s) on our Anxiety Summit interview: The Research – Food to prevent and treat anxiety and depression?
Pumpkin seeds are rich in tryptophan and zinc and research shows that a functional food made from these seeds actually helps with social anxiety.
Here are a few minor discrepancies in the above sections:
- In #1 dopamine is not a calming brain chemical but instead it’s stimulating and helps with focus and motivation. The B vitamin mentioned contain folic acid whereas methyl folate is the preferred choice.
- In #2 the GABA product recommended is 500mg and I find starting much lower is a more effective approach with my clients.
#3 Cue calm – open a worry window
Opening a worry window is a new approach for me and I’d love to hear if it helps you now or has helped you in the past.
Anti-anxiety gummies and low serotonin
Ali Miller, RD, shares a recipe for anti-anxiety gummies (you can see it in the PDF) and I love that it includes coconut water, ginger and turmeric. I’d replace the cup of orange juice (which is high in sugar) with water and use 2 tablespoons instead. Be sure to watch that these gelatin gummies don’t make your anxiety (or depression or sleep worse). It’s a small amount of gelatin but if you’re eating a lot of them and you’re prone to low serotonin, this may be a problem for you. I write about this in a blog post here – Collagen and gelatin lower serotonin: does this increase your anxiety and depression? If it does cause an adverse reaction it doesn’t mean you can’t eat them, instead it simply means you may need to take tryptophan when eating them (if low serotonin is the issue.
If you’d like a PDF of the article you can grab a copy here.
I’d love to hear if any of these approaches have helped you or your clients/patients. Keep in mind that it’s a fun article that is by no means comprehensive in terms of addressing all the possible root causes of anxiety.