5 Totally Natural Ways to Reduce Anxiety

Looking for natural ways to reduce anxiety? These 5 simple, all-natural techniques can help. Try them - you'll be glad you did.

Graphic of natural ways to reduce anxiety, including yoga, breathing, meditation, diet, and friendship

So, the bad news first, Anxiety is a major issue for a lot of us.  We even have anxiety about our anxiety.  It is not fun and can be downright debilitating.

The good news is that most of us can reduce and even relieve anxiety through various natural techniques.  If you are interested in an alternative way to reduce anxiety and achieve a more balanced life, then dive into the list.  All of these can be tried worry-free, so see what can help you right now.

  1. Exercise, like Yoga.
  2. Breathing with more focus
  3. Prayer and Meditation
  4. Good food and supplements
  5. Friendship

Exercise, like Yoga

Most articles on natural ways to reduce anxiety start with exercise. And with good cause. Exercise has so many benefits for a person.  On a physiological level, it increases “feel good” hormones and promotes your bodies ability to regulate in general.  

For those us looking for a fresh start, it is most important to do something, rather than get caught up in the “optimal physical exertion.”  I enjoy shooting hoops or hitting some golf balls at the range, so that is a great place for me to start.  

Once you start somewhere, then you can look towards optimizing it.  A more intensive workout, guided if possible, will get you better results.  For example, Yoga exercise has helped countless persons reduce stress and anxiety.  You can find great instruction for free on platforms like YouTube. For beginners, Yoga with Adriene is a great way to get started.

Of course, you can also sign up for classes at various gyms, spas, or community centers.  

Breathing with more focus

Breathing with more focus is a simple and great way to reduce anxiety.  Our bodies can feel like they “take over” during an anxious time, and these techniques help you take back control.  Here are 8 techniques you may find helpful.  

Be sure you are kind and patient with yourself as you learn and adapt and apply.

Prayer & Mediation

Prayer and Meditation connects our minds and our bodies, while anxiety disconnects us. Sometimes the biggest resistance to trying prayer or meditation, is thinking it “doesn’t do anything.”  Research studies show conclusively how beneficial it really is, even a small amount each day.  

Not sure how to get started, check out this quick guide by mindful.org.  Apps such as Calm or Headspace are also really helpful.

Not sure about meditation given your faith tradition? Not to worry. Apps like Hallow and Abide are made for Christians. 

Good Food & Supplements

Do you know how connected your gut and brain are?  It’s being called the gut-brain axis, and science is unraveling just how important our microbiome is to our overall emotional health

But what is the microbiome? 

The term “microbiome” refers to all the bacteria—good and bad—that lives in your body, especially your gastrointestinal system.  As it turns out, our internal bacteria (especially the good bacteria!) is hugely important in regulating hormones associated with stress and anxiety, such as cortisol.

Research shows probiotic gut bacteria can alleviate depression and anxiety.  Here’s a good guide for picking a probiotic and here’s some thoughts on choosing probiotic supporting foods.  

What is also interestingly connected to the gut-brain access is the rising role of hemp CBD supplements, largely because of CBD’s role in reducing inflammation.  The combination of a good probiotic and a good CBD product could go a long way to naturally reducing anxiety.

Either way, the bottom line is that we need to take care of our gut!  And CBD can help with that.

Friendship

Friendship is so important for reducing anxiety.  The human to human connection causes our body to re-regulate hormones like serotonin, dopamine and cortisol.  Good friendships take effort, like anything good, so do not ignore or brush aside the benefits from building friendships.

A problematic side-effect of anxiety is that it tempts us to disassociate with people, precisely when we need connection the most. If your anxiety is tempting you to withdraw, do yourself a favor, pick up the phone, and call a good friend. Your brain will thank you for it.

Good news first!  There are so many natural ways to help reduce anxiety.  Given our many stressors, both external and internal, it is no surprise that a lot us are suffering from anxiety. Picking one or several of these ways to start addressing it, can be a great way to build momentum towards reducing and relieving it.  

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John Paul Slonkosky

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