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  Natural Remedies for Anxiety
From   Lewis Mehl-Madrona, M.D., Ph.D.

Natural Remedies for Anxiety

Excerpted from "Anxiety (a web site in progress)"


Treatments for Anxiety

As part of any personal care plan for anxiety, please consider this simple formula:

1. Before anything else, exercise vigorously at least 30 minutes daily, and then

  1. Meditate at least 15 minutes daily.
  2. Use visual imagery and relaxation exercises 15 minutes daily
  3. Spend at least 5 minutes daily in prayer and/or personal ceremony and ritual.

Here are some other natural remedies for anxiety:

  1. Hot baths.

  2. Nutritional therapies:

    1. Eliminate stimulants as much as possible, including decreasing coffee, cola, black tea, and chocolate.
    2. Increase calming foods including rice, rosemary, wheat germ, mushrooms, and oatmeal.
    3. Use fresh, alkaline juices, including a combination of one teaspoon of cherry concentrate, one teaspoon of chlorophyll, and one egg yolk. Also consider (1) Celery, carrot, and prune juice, (2) lettuce and tomato juice, (3) carrot juice, (4) oatstraw tea or juice, (5) lime juice with whey, (6) radish, prune juice, and rice polishings, (7) carrot and spinach juice, (8) carrot and celery juice, and (9) spinach juice.
    4. Specific foods high in B-complex are good, including oysters, celery, sesame seeds, tahini, calming foods, oatstraw juice and oats, collards, kelp, cherry, cucumber, corn, grapes, chicory, apples, kale, honey, mulberry, and carrot.
    5. For nervous tension, there is a remedy of 2 oz fresh walnuts, 2 oz black sesame seeds, crust together and eat. Also, use 3 oz fresh oysters, 3 oz peanuts, 2 oz celery. Boil in 2 pt water until reduced to 1 pt. Divide into two halves. Drink onehalf in am and one in pm. Do this for 7-14 days.

  3. Vitamin supplements:

    1. Niacinamide 500 mg to 3 gm in divided doses. Stop if nauseated. Some people must start at 50 mg three times daily and work up to avoid the niacin flush.

    2. Vitamin B6, 100 mg per day

    3. l-tryptophan, 500 mg to 3 gm per day or 5-HTP, 50 mg to 300 mg per day.

    4. Thiamine 100 mg per day

    5. Calcium 2 gm per day

    6. Magnesium 1 gm per day
    7. Vitamin B12 1000 mcg or 1 mg twice daily

  4. Botanical Medicines:
    1. Kava kava, 900 mg every 3 hours when anxious. Side effect is nausea and gastrointestinal upset.
    2. Chamomile, 2-8 gm of powder per day in divided doses as tolerated or as a tea. If using the tincture, use 0.5 to 4 cc's per day. Caution is advised during pregnancy due to the emmenogogic effect. Use with caution in those hypersensitive to ragweed.
    3. Hops, 0.5 to 1 gm of the powder daily, or 2-4 ml of the tincture daily. Excessive use above recommended can cause depression (though well above what we have recommended). Excessive use can also make you sleepy.
    4. Hyssops, use as much as desired, no toxicity, usual dose is 2-4 cc per day of the tincture. Use with caution during pregnancy because of emmenagogic and abortifacient effects.
    5. Passion flower, usual dose is 0.5 to 3 cc daily of the tincture. Passion flower can't be used during pregnancy due to its uterine stimulant effect. It lowers blood pressure, so should be used with caution in states of low blood pressure. It interacts with phenobarbital and secobarbital, which are rarely used anymore. It makes you more sleepy than usual with these agents.
    6. Skullcap, make a tea of 1-2 tsp of the herb to one cup of water, drink 1-3 cups daily. For the powder, take 1-2 gm per day. For the tincture use 2-4 cc per day. Overdose (lots) can result in mental confusion and even seizures.
    7. Valerian, 2-10 cc of the tincture every 2 hours in acute conditions. Of the capsules, 2-4 capsules every two hours, of the infusion, take 1-2 tsp of the root per cup of water every two hours. Large doses can cause nausea, diarrhea, urination, and delirium. Use daily no longer than 3 weeks. Don't take around the time of surgery because it can potentiate anesthetics. The capsules are usually 450 mg of valerian.
    8. St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum). The first report of its efficacy for the treatment of anxiety was a case series of 6 women with depression, aged 55-65, who were treated with hypericine complex, a derivative of St. John's wort. Significant improvement in anxiety levels occurred. (p<.01).

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