Stress is normal but what happens when it gets too much?
Everybody experiences stress, but the most prevalent stressors are usually those linked to work pressure, finances, health, and relationships. As there are many ways to overcome stress, there's also this alternative, a much-debated method of stress reduction that you might want to try: dietary supplements!
Although these are not for everyone, therapeutic amounts of the recommended supplements can be effective stress-relieving complements to a healthy diet and lifestyle. Supplements are touted to alleviate stress, but do they really work?
Let's see what these supplements are and how they can help you relieve everyday stress.
Stress Statistics In the UK
Did you know? The Mental Health Foundation reported that 74% of adults in the UK have experienced stress levels high enough to make them feel helpless or overwhelmed. Comparatively, 67% of men agreed with this statement, while 81% of women did. Those aged 18 to 24 were more likely to say this (83%) than those 55 and older (65%).
Among adults, 32% reported having suicidal inclinations due to stress, while 16% reported engaging in self-injury due to stress.
The Risk Factors of Stress
Chronic stress has adverse effects not only on our physical health but also on our mental health. Researchers at the National Institute of Mental Health have found that long-term stress can contribute to a myriad of health issues. It includes:
- Sleep issues
- Mood swings
- Cardiovascular diseases
Unmanaged stress might reduce your lifespan by years. It should not be taken lightly.
Are Stress Supplements Effective?
Stress has been a problem for thousands of years. People in the past relied on herbal treatments for stress management, which are now highly regarded in traditional Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine.
It is true that there is no "magic pill" that would totally eliminate stress. However, several promising supplements can help. Despite the often exaggerated nature of such promises, research has shown that supplements combined with a healthy diet and other lifestyle changes can effectively lower stress levels.
What Supplements Help With Stress?
It is important to note that dietary supplements are not regulated the same way as drugs. Thus, you must discuss any supplement use with your doctor before use.
Do you feel sceptical about stress supplements? You can have faith that long-held views about the effects of herbal medicines are backed up by modern clinical investigations.
So, here are four (4) supplements that could help reduce stress so you can start your journey to a healthier and more relaxed one.
Ashwagandha (winter cherry or Indian ginseng) is an adaptogen in Ayurvedic medicine. It is known for its potential to improve the body's response to stress by lowering cortisol levels to help you feel calmer and more focused. In addition, ashwagandha has been shown to inhibit the development of a number of diseases and disorders that could potentially be fatal.
In an eight-week, prospective, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical study, 58 people with stress and anxiety were given an aqueous root extract of ashwagandha to see how it worked. The results showed that the Ashwagandha root extract treatment was much more effective than the placebo.
Did you know? KSM-66 Ashwagandha is known as the world’s leading adaptogen. This award-winning herb that has been linked to a variety of health benefits, including reduced stress and fatigue, enhanced mood and cognition, and decreased inflammation.
2. Holy Basil
Holy basil, also known as "Tulsi," is an Ayurvedic plant that functions as an adaptogen by nourishing the body, mind, and soul and promoting calm and well-being. Popularly known as t "Elixir of Life" in the Ayurveda system, it possesses powerful curative properties that effectively treat a wide variety of common health ailments. According to some, holy basil has a soothing effect similar to yoga, promoting mental clarity and a calmer and more relaxed demeanour.
Researchers have conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled study on holy basil's efficacy in managing general stress. It was found that the herbal supplement was well-tolerated by the participants and concluded that it can alleviate stress symptoms up to 1.6 times or 39% compared to the placebo group.
Green tea contains a particular type of amino acid called L-theanine. They can also be found in some mushrooms. L-theanine is known for its potential to promote a feeling of relaxation.
L-theanine supplementation was demonstrated to have positive effects in decreasing stress-related symptoms and cognitive enhancement in healthy people. This is based on a trial that was conducted for four weeks.
4. Rhodiola Rosea
According to a study published in the Current Pharmacology Reports, the Rhodiola Rosea plant, also known as the golden root and arctic root, is used as a treatment for stress. It can be found growing in the mountainous areas of Europe and Asia, as well as in the Arctic.
A study revealed that participants suffering from stress-related fatigue had improved mental performance and reduced cortisol levels or stress after a repeated treatment using Rhodiola rosea supplement.
Ways To Cope With Stress
Stress-related symptoms can include having difficulty sleeping, eating, or feeling agitated and worried. Managing stress involves a combination of multiple approaches. Thus, one should not only rely on supplements to overcome stress. In combination with your stress supplements, here's what you need to do to live a less stressful life the healthy way:
- Stay active and exercise regularly. Exercise improves sleep and helps you have a positive outlook on life.
- Eat a healthy diet. A healthy and nutritious diet is good for your mind and minimises stress.
- Meditate daily. Meditation offers excellent benefits for the mind and body, helping you sleep better, have more energy, and have a better mood.
- Take some time to relax. Get out of the house and do something fun!
- Socialise. Share your worries and feelings with people you trust. This could be a parent, friend, counsellor, doctor, or pastor.
- Steer clear of booze and drugs. These may appear to be helpful, but they can actually make things worse and make you feel more stressed than before.
- Learn to ask for help. Talk to a professional counsellor, social worker, or psychologist if your issues persist or if you are having suicidal thoughts.
Our Take Away
Supplements such as ashwagandha, holy basil, L-theanine, and Rhodiola Rosea have been linked to reduced stress symptoms.
There is no doubt that stress is an issue that has to be addressed. And it's great to know several beneficial methods for alleviating stress. You'll just have to make sure you maintain a healthy diet, follow a sleep schedule, exercise frequently, talk to friends, see a mental health expert, and practice relaxation techniques and meditation.
Food for thought: Sometimes, you can turn it around by seeing stress as a powerful driving force, not an obstacle. ―Bill Phillips
Get all these stress relief goodness in one bottle!
Stress can ruin even the most fantastic days. The circumstances of your life may be out of your control, but how you view them is entirely in your hands. Combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle, you may opt to try using supplements that can help you relieve stress.
Earths Secret's Calm Complex has them all! It is a combination of five natural, vegan-friendly supplements—KSM-66 Ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, Holy Basil, L-Theanine, and Organic Black Pepper—that work together to increase serotonin levels and reduce stress.
How has stress changed in the modern world? Click here to learn more.