Most people don’t know it, but stress can be downright deadly.
Chronic stress triples your chances of dying before your time.1 And it raises your risk of many of the deadliest health conditions. In fact, it’s linked to the six leading causes of death.
Not only that, stress is responsible for up to 90% of all doctor’s office visits in the U.S.
But you can help fight it with these five soothing herbs:
This small shrub that grows in India is a powerful adaptogen. That means it helps the body resist stress. In one study, people with a history of chronic stress took two 300 mg capsules of ashwagandha extract each day for 60 days. It lowered their levels of a stress hormone called cortisol. And participants reported feeling less stress, anxiety, and depression.3
This flower reduces mental stress and relaxes tense muscles.4 Make chamomile tea by steeping two to three heaping teaspoons of the dried petals in boiling water. Let them soak for 10 to 15 minutes. And enjoy a cup three to four times a day—between meals.
Chamomile is in the same plant family as ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, and daisies.5 If you are allergic to any of these, try lemon balm tea instead. Prepare it the same way.
Studies show passionflower is as effective as prescription medications at reducing anxiety. But unlike antianxiety pills, this herb doesn’t cause side effects.
Researchers gave passionflower extract to patients suffering from generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). They found that it was as effective as 30 mg of oxazepam.6 The difference? Oxazepam impairs job performance, causing drowsiness and difficulty concentrating.7
4. Eleuthero Root
Like ashwagandha, eleuthero root—also known as Siberian ginseng—is an adaptogen. Researchers from the Swedish Herbal Institute found eleuthero root extract lowers cortisol and nitric oxide levels. These rise during times of physical or emotional stress. Reducing them makes it easier to cope with stressful situations.8
The aroma of this flower is well known for inducing relaxation and sleep. As an oral supplement, it’s even more powerful. In one study, a group of participants with GAD took lavender oil extract for six weeks. The other group took a sedative drug called lorazepam.
People taking the lavender supplement experienced a 45% decrease in anxiety symptoms.9 Lorazepam was 1% more effective… But it comes with an increased risk of dementia and addiction.
All five of these herbs are easy to find online and at health food stores.
Do you use herbs to calm your nerves? What do you find the most helpful? Tell us in the comments section below.
In Good Health,
Publisher, INH Health Watch