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Suffering from stress and insomnia? Doctors suggest using these 4 types of herbs
Written by SOT.COM.AL 7 Nëntor 2023
Stress is now an everyday occurrence, with people eagerly looking for all kinds of ways to combat it, relax and feel better. Others turn to physical methods such as yoga and breathing exercises, while some take the more drastic route of pharmaceutical solutions. Anti-anxiety drugs, however, like all types of drugs, contain unwanted side effects that are unpleasant for anyone who comes face-to-face with them.
So, if you want to try more natural ways to fight stress, without the side effects, you can look at plants like chamomile, sedge, and more, according to Dr. Debra Rose Wilson, professor at Austin Peay State University.
Each herb affects the body in different ways. For example, some work by lowering blood levels of cortisol, the stress hormone. Long-term exposure to high levels of circulating cortisol increases the risk of developing chronic stress.
Other herbs help create a feeling of relaxation by changing signal processing in the brain. For example, extracts of valerian root modify G-aminobutyric acid receptors in the brain, promoting relaxation and reducing feelings of anxiety. Many also claim that anxiolytic herbs such as sedge root can also help with sleep problems.
Some herbs that help relieve stress:
A small 2016 clinical trial investigated the efficacy and safety of chamomile as a long-term treatment for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). All 93 participants received 1,500 mg of chamomile per day for 12 weeks. After this period, some continued to take chamomile for 26 weeks, while others were given a placebo. The researchers observed that, after 12 weeks, participants who continued to take chamomile were just as likely to experience a recurrence of their anxiety disorder symptoms compared to those who took the placebo, however, in cases of recurrence, the symptoms were less severe. .
In some cases, consuming chamomile can cause an allergic reaction, especially if it interacts with certain medications, such as warfarin and cyclosporine.
People have used valerian for centuries to treat a variety of sleep problems, anxiety and depression. According to some studies, valerian is shown to be able to calm feelings of anxiety, while it seems to be useful in some pathological conditions related to the nervous system. The benefit of this herb is mainly attributed to the action of valerenic acid, as well as the enhanced activity of the neurotransmitter GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), which contributes to relaxation and stress relief. Among other things, it is more likely to help people with mild to moderate insomnia, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, hyperactivity, and restless legs syndrome (RLS).
Many people use lavender to calm their nervous system and relieve stress, either as a drink or as an essential oil. Lavender essential oil (LEO) contains chemicals called terpenes. A 2017 review showed that two of these terpenes, linalool and linalyl acetate, have a calming effect on chemical receptors in the brain, suggesting that the oil provides an effective short-term treatment for anxiety disorders.
It is a family of plants with about 550 different species. Passion flower increases GABA levels in the brain, promoting relaxation. Some studies show that a particular species, P. incarnata, available in tablet form or as a liquid solution, may be effective in treating anxiety and nervousness. One study found that preoperative use of the drug reduced anxiety in patients about to undergo surgery. Another study in rodents showed that the herb reduced anxiety and improved memory within four weeks.