Herbs for stress
Stress can interfere with all aspects of your life. It can make it hard to sleep and make you feel tired or anxious during the day. Stress can have a detrimental effect on your health. Is there a natural approach to relieving the symptoms of stress? When stress makes it hard to sleep, an herb called valerian root may help. A number of studies show that valerian may make it easier to fall asleep and improve sleep quality so you can get a restful night's sleep. However, more evidence is still needed to support its effectiveness. Some research also shows it reduces anxiety that people experience in stressful situations but other studies have shown no effect so results remain mixed at this time. Kava is another herb that may help ease anxiety symptoms to calm the mind and promote relaxation. However, more research is needed to prove the effectiveness of kava. Other herbs used to reduce stress include ashwagandha and rhodiola. These herbs may help your body better deal with stress with fewer side effects than prescription medications. Researchers are studying the possibilities that rhodiola may reduce stress-related fatigue and help with depression. St. John's wort is an herb recommended by some health care practitioners as a natural approach to treating depression. Some studies suggest it may be as effective as some prescription medications used to treat depression but others have not and it is not a proven therapy at this time. Ongoing studies are still needed to confirm the full benefits of herbs for stress and depression.
Herbs for Stress Relief: Are They Safe?
Herbs can have side effects. The types of side effects you experience will vary with the herb. Stress-relieving herbs are available in a number of forms - capsules, tablets or in the form of a tea you drink. Some herbal supplements contain a mixture of herbs. Some of these herbs may interact with other herbs and supplements and with prescription medications. You should be cautious using herbs if you're taking prescription medications, especially medications that thin your blood. Talk to your doctor before starting any type of herbal supplement. Based on your history and the medications you're taking, your doctor can help you choose the one that's right for you and help follow your progress.
This summary is intended for general informational purposes only, and should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of purity, strength, or safety of the products. As a result, effects may vary. You should read product labels. In addition, if you are taking medications, herbs, or other supplements you should consult with a qualified healthcare provider before taking a supplement as supplements may interact with other medications, herbs, and nutritional products. If you have a medical condition, including if you are pregnant or nursing, you should speak to your physician before taking a supplement. Consult a healthcare provider if you experience side effects.