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Anyone who has struggled with anxiety can tell you that it is a terrifying experience. Imagine experiencing your worst nightmare come true every single day. Those who suffer from anxiety live with fear on a continual basis. It is terrifying and exhausting for those who endure it.
Unfortunately, many suffer from anxiety and simply don’t understand why they feel out of sorts, why they are so afraid or why they feel bad all of the time.
The symptoms of anxiety include:
- Feelings of worry or stress that are excessive
- Fatigue, even after a full night sleep-feel tired all the time for no reason
- Sleep troubles: problems falling or staying asleep
- Easily startled
- A view of everyday problems that is unrealistic
- Unusual cravings for sugar, sweets and/or highly processed carbohydrates
- Feelings of being not normal, different, odd, strange or just not right
- Body aches, as if the muscles are bruised
- Feeling “on edge” frequently
- Lightheaded, feel like you are going to faint
- Nervous energy, excess energy, and feeling of not being able to relax
- Difficulty concentrating
- Tightness in chest or chest pain
- Rapid heartbeat
- Heart palpitations, feelings like your heart is skipping beats
- Feeling cold, having the chills
- Dizziness or vertigo
- Pounding Heart
- Weakness in the arms or legs
- Need to urinate urgently
- Sexual problems, lack of interest in sex
- Difficulty breathing
- Short term memory loss
- Frequently feel overwhelmed
- Feel like you are going crazy
- Fear that you are going to die
- Racing thoughts
- Unrealistic fears
This list is fairly long, but by no means are the symptoms listed every symptom that is encountered when someone is dealing with anxiety. And it’s a terrifying existence living with these symptoms every single day. Unfortunately many live for years with the symptoms before seeking help…..some never seek help, but shut themselves off from the world.
Not feeling normal
People who suffer from anxiety know logically that something is wrong. They simply don’t feel normal. But they don’t know why. Some feel as if they are going crazy. Some feel as if they are going to die.
If you are struggling with anxiety, there is hope. You do not have to live your life locked in prison of the symptoms of anxiety.
I personally dealt with the frightening effects of anxiety at different times throughout my life. While in college, I frequently was awakened by panic attacks. These were caused by a mixture of excess stress. At the time I had a very large class load and was working 30 hours a week. I also had a very unhealthy diet and little time for exercise.
Once I left college, I was actually able to conquer those panic attacks naturally, through a combination of exercise, eating a more healthy diet, and deep breathing exercises.
A trip to the emergency room
But for me, anxiety reared its ugly head again after my mother was diagnosed with cancer. And this time it landed me in the emergency room! I was having severe pain and pressure in my chest, heart palpitations, and difficulty breathing. I really was terrified that I was going to die! It was horrible and so frightening. But after an EKG, blood work, x-rays, and everything else they could possibly do, the doctors told me that my heart looked absolutely wonderful and everything was perfectly normal. They concluded that because of the stress of my mother’s cancer surgery, scheduled the next day was the cause.
After my Mom’s surgery and recovery with a clean bill of health, all of the symptoms subsided……until I unexpectedly lost my job due to budget cuts. I once again began having symptoms that landed me in the doctor’s office. But this time, we knew that it was most likely anxiety. I had yet another EKG with normal results. This time I left with a prescription for an anxiety drug.
That medication did help, but I wanted to look at other avenues of treating my anxiety more naturally because I am sensitive to medications and did experience some side effects that I didn’t particularly like.
A couple of things that can be done to help with anxiety
Find a naturopathic doctor
Please make sure that what you are experiencing isn’t being caused by other health conditions or nutrient deficiencies. It is always best to rule them out. And you will feel better to know that more serious conditions have been ruled out. And a good natural doctor can put you on a supplement regime to assist with any deficiencies that are discovered.
Most people are magnesium deficient and are completely unaware that they are. Magnesium controls hundreds of different processes in the body and helps with the production of neurotransmitters. When your neurotransmitters (brain chemicals) are low, you will deal with mood issues such as depression and anxiety. Magnesium is completely safe to take and it is hard to get too much because the body processes it out. Many forms of magnesium are not absorbed well and can cause diarrhea, so I recommend an ionic magnesium chloride which is much more readily absorbed by the body and will cause far fewer trips to the bathroom! I am sensitive to most forms of magnesium but have no problem with magnesium.
Get tested for hypoglycemia
Many people are unaware that wildly shifting blood sugar levels and actually affect anxiety levels. When your blood sugar is lower, anxiety can peak. A test for hypoglycemia can help determine if fluctuating blood sugar levels are to blame for your anxiety. You can help keep blood sugar levels balanced by reducing the amount of processed sugar that you consume. If you must eat sugar (including fruit), then it’s best to also eat some high-quality protein (preferably from pasture-raised animal sources) and high-quality fat (virgin coconut oil, real butter, lard, tallow). The protein and fat help to prevent the blood sugar from spiking and falling quickly, which can help anxiety.
Deep breathing can actually reduce or eliminate extreme anxiety. The flood of oxygen stops the body’s stress fight or flight response. It only takes a few minutes of slow, relaxed, deep breathing to feel results….and you can do this anywhere!
Regular movement helps the body to produce and release critical neurochemicals such as serotonin and GABA, which when low, contribute to stress and anxiety.
Turn off technology
You can actually become overstimulated by too much input from technology. If you spend a lot of time watching the news or scary movies, it can increase anxiety levels. When feeling anxious, it’s best to surround yourself with soothing things. Some soft music or a funny movie will help your anxiety much more than two hours of the latest horror flick.
Try brainwave entrainment
With brainwave entrainment, you listen to a recording which actually helps to change the level of brainwave activity in your brain. Research shows that people who suffer from anxiety tend to have high amounts of beta brainwaves. Listening to a recording that contains alpha brainwaves (which are what you experience when you are awake but relaxed) can significantly reduce anxiety.
Have yourself tested for hormone imbalance
Overproduction of the body’s stress hormone cortisol can contribute to anxiety. And those with chronic stress often have high cortisol levels. Imbalanced thyroid levels can lead to panic attacks as well. Simple testing can uncover hormone imbalances so that you know how to proceed in getting rid of anxiety for good!
Take some alone time
This is not optional, but it is a necessity when you are dealing with anxiety and are energy sensitive! You need to take some quiet time to be able to listen to your body and discover whether or not the energy you are carrying is even your own! It’s a very simple question, but when you take a few moments to ask and listen to your body, you can discover if you are experiencing someone else’s energy or your energy. If the anxious energy you carry isn’t yours, asking that question will help the energy dissipate. If it’s yours, then it will not. But If you discover that it is your energy, you can take further steps to deal with it more effectively.
You don’t have to continue to feel anxious all of the time. I discovered that excessively low levels of chromium and magnesium contributed to my anxiety. As did large amounts of stress and a high sugar diet which reduced my nutrient levels even more. I was able to reverse my anxiety naturally, without having to take anti-anxiety medications which only treat symptoms, but don’t fix the underlying problem. Knowing that you too can find relief.