Anxiety can affect your whole life, but you can regain control and feel better with these simple suggestions.
1. POP A DAILY MULTI
Your regular multi can do wonders for your mood, according to a meta-analysis published in Psychosomatic Medicine. After analysing eight studies of 1300 adults who took a multivitamin for about a month, researchers found that those individuals felt less tired and experienced a 65 per cent reduction in stress and a 68 per cent decrease in anxiety. Supplements containing higher doses of B vitamins were strongly associated with this improved mood, possibly because everyday stress can deplete your body’s supply of the stuff.
2. FEAST ON FISH
The ever-versatile omega-3 fatty acids found in many types of fish can lower your diabetes risk, improve your heart health, and even help boost your mood. One study suggests these polyunsaturated fatty acids may drop anxiety levels, too. Shoot for 90 to 120 grams of oily fish three times a week – think salmon, rainbow trout, tuna, or sardines.
3. BREW UP SOME CHAMOMILE TEA
Feeling jittery? Chamomile is known for its sedative effects, as it contains apigenin, a flavonoid that binds to the same brain receptors as Xanax and Valium, two common anti-anxiety medications. While more research needs to be done, some studies suggest that regular cups of chamomile tea can soothe worry over time.
4. HAVE EGGS FOR BREAKFAST
Eggs are a great way to start the day because they contain choline, a compound that enhances cognitive functioning and overall brain health, says psychiatrist Dr Drew Ramsey. One study found that low choline levels were associated with increased anxiety symptoms.
5. PLACE A FLOWERS ON YOUR WINDOWSILL
In a study of 90 people, women who sat near a bouquet of colourful flowers felt relaxed during a five-minute task, while those sitting near a foliage-only plant didn’t, say US horticultural therapy researchers.
6. HAVE A LAUGH
Watching a silly YouTube clip or a favourite comedy TV show can work miracles on your body and brain. After viewing just 20 minutes of funny scenes, participants in one study had significantly decreased levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that can hinder focus.
7.BOOK IN A MASSAGE
Treat yourself to a professional rub-down. It’s no secret that a good massage can help relieve painful muscle tension, a common symptom of anxiety. According to one experiment, published in the journal Depression and Anxiety, anxiety sufferers experienced a 50 per cent decrease in their symptoms after a series of 10 one-hour massages over three months.
8. BREAK A SWEAT
Researchers studied nearly 3000 people with a variety of medical conditions and found that those who exercised regularly (from walking to weightlifting) reported a 20 per cent drop in anxiety symptoms compared with those who didn’t get up and move
9. PUMP YOURSELF UP
Saying “I’m excited” instead of trying to relax right before tackling an anxiety-inducing activity may help you perform better, according to a recent study. Researchers had 140 people prepare public speeches. Before they spoke, they were instructed to say either “I’m excited” or “I’m calm”. Participants who verbalised their enthusiasm gave longer, more persuasive speeches than those who tried to remain cool.
10. CONQUER YOUR CLUTTER
Mess causes stress. UCLA researchers have found that clutter has a strong effect on mood and self-esteem, as it overwhelms your senses, distracts you, and can make you feel unorganised. Just tackle one area at a time, so you don’t feel swamped. You’ll soon reap the benefits of your hard work!