Many people are dealing with stress, anxiety and/or depression on a daily basis, and it can make it hard for some people to live their life normally. Antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications are often prescribed, but they don’t always help, and the root cause may not be in your mind. Research has shown a possible connection between gut health and the development and severity of certain emotional problems like anxiety and depression. Stress and vitamin and mineral deficiencies may also play a role, so let’s take a look at some possible ways of fighting anxiety and depression naturally.
There are certain types of bacteria in your gut that produce neurotransmitters like dopamine, GABA, and serotonin. These chemicals play a key role in mood, anxiety, ability to relax, stress management, and many other things. If the gut is unhealthy and the bacteria are unable to produce these neurotransmitters in the right amounts, it couldcontribute to the development of depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Improving gut health can also help improve immune system function, digestion, and nutrient absorption.
There are many things you can do that may help improve the health of your gut. Cutting out inflammatory foods and replacing them with fresh, whole foods is one of the most important changes you can make. Inflammatory foods include frozen or boxed meals or food mixes, high-sugar foods like candy and soda, unhealthy fats like canola oil and margarine, and foods that have long ingredients lists with ingredients you don’t recognize. Cutting down on the chemicals we consume and use around the house is a great step towards reducing our toxic burden and the accompanying inflammation. You can replace these foods with organic fruits and vegetables, homemade meals, high-quality meats, healthy fats like coconut and olive oil, and replacing sodas and fruit juices with water.
Another possible cause of certain mental health disorders is a vitamin or mineral deficiency, or multiple deficiencies. Different vitamins and minerals play different roles in the body, and many of them help regulate mood, anxiety, and stress. For example, vitamins B12 and B9 (folate) play important roles in regulating mood, vitamin B5 helps support the adrenal glands which are affected by stres, and vitamin D deficiencies have been linked to anxiety disorders. These are just a few examples of why it is important to ensure you are getting all the vitamins and minerals your body needs on a daily basis, but it’s often difficult to get all of these nutrients through diet alone. Suppplementing with a high-quality multivitamin can help you get some of the nutrients you may not be getting enough of from your diet, or you may want to include a B vitamin complex like B Complex Ultra. You can also get routine lab work done so your vitamin D levels, iron levels, and cortisol can all be checked.
These are great changes you may want to consider implemeting in your life, but if you need a little help along the way you could try taking EZ Relax which may help if you have a hard time unwinding or falling asleep at night, or you could try Pantothenic Acid Complex which contains rhodiola extract and other adaptogenic herbs, along with pantothenic acid that work together and may help reduce stress and anxiety. Sometimes people notice a big improvement with just taking a b complex or starting a yoga routine, but everyone is different. You should never be afraid to ask for help from your family and friends, or your healthcare professional. Do your best to focus on the good days rather than the bad days, and surround yourself with positive, healthy, and encouraging people and habits.
While these healthy changes could make a big difference, this advice is not meant to replace medical treatment. Always consult with your doctor before making any changes, especially if you are on medication.