Dr. Kathleen Jones
10 Anxiety-Fighting Vitamins You Should Know About
Mental health counseling and lifestyle changes are an important part of a holistic approach to anxiety management, but did you know that certain vitamins can also help you reduce anxiety symptoms? Here are 10 supplements that have been shown to balance the body’s stress response and optimize nervous system function.
Magnesium is often called “nature’s Valium”. When your body encounters a stressor, it uses stored magnesium to stimulate neurotransmitters in your brain to help you relax and center yourself. It’s estimated that 75% of Americans are magnesium deficient because of a lack of whole grains, nuts, and green vegetables in the modern diet, so a magnesium supplement is a great way to make sure your body isn’t burning through its supply too quickly.
GABA is an amino acid that helps your brain produce serotonin, which makes it a very important part of mood regulation. When your serotonin levels are too low, stress hormones increase and GABA is depleted, causing feelings of anxiety to spiral out of control. Taking a GABA supplement can help replace lost GABA and get you back to a calmer state of mind.
Ashwaganda hails from a group of supplements known as adaptogens, which have been used for hundreds of years in Indian and Russian medicine to manage symptoms of anxiety and stress. Ashwaganda supports the overall
function of your nervous system, and recent research has revealed it also has positive effects on the adrenal and immune systems.
Rhodiola is known as the “golden root” in Siberian and Chinese medicine. It is often associated with higher energy levels and endurance. Studies suggest that Rhodiola supplements are most beneficial when integrated into a long-term routine.
Probiotics may not be the first thing that comes to mind when discussing anxiety, but the relationship between digestive health and stress is a complex one - a healthy balance of bacteria can help the body respond better to stress. You can increase your probiotics intake with a vitamin or by supplementing your diet with foods containing active cultures.
6. Fish Oil
Fish oil has been shown to balance mood and is believed to reduce symptoms of depression, which often co-occur with anxiety disorders. Fish oil contains omega-3 fatty acids, which are important for your heart and nervous system.
Like GABA, 5-HTP is a serotonin-booster that has been hailed for its all natural anti-anxiety benefits. If you are currently taking an antidepressant medication, it’s important to talk with a healthcare practitioner before taking 5-HTP.
Lysine is an amino acid naturally occurring in fish, beans, and meat products. Lysine supplements are regularly used to lower stress hormones, and a placebo-controlled study published by the National Library of Medicine in 2007 found that Lysine supplements significantly reduced anxiety symptoms and cortisol levels in men and women.
9. B Complex
The B complex vitamin is a combination of several important types of B vitamins - all essential for a healthy nervous system and promoting lower stress and overall feelings of wellbeing.
L-theanine is an amino acid found in green tea, black tea, and certain types of mushrooms. It is believed to play an important role in balancing serotonin, dopamine, and cortisol, making it a dynamic anti-stress vitamin.
When choosing supplements, it’s important to know what you are buying. Many companies offer vitamins and supplements at low prices, but they often cut corners when it comes to quality. Because the health of my patients is my top priority, I source all of my vitamins from Metagenics and FullScript - both offer high quality products from reputable companies who maintain rigorous testing standards. To learn more about our vitamin selection, call us at (614) 985-1435 or visit our online store at https://www.eohinfo.com/store.
Anxiety and Depression Association of America.
Jahns, Erin. 2021. The 10 Best Vitamins for Anxiety, According to Experts. The/Thirty. https://thethirty.whowhatwear.com/vitamins-for-anxiety
Hull, Megan. 2020. Best Supplements for Anxiety. The Recovery Village. https://www.therecoveryvillage.com/mental-health/anxiety/related/vitamins-for anxiety/
Smriga, Miro et al. 2007. Oral treatment with L-lysine and L-arginine reduces anxiety and basal cortisol levels in healthy humans. National Library of Medicine. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17510493/