Natural Remedies For Nausea And Stress

Stress and anxiety are experiences that unite us all. Whether you are experiencing the occasional bout of physical and emotional tension or suffer from a chronic anxiety disorder, the often undervalued array of herbal supplements contain properties that can propel you from a state of dysfunctional agitation, to your feet once more. In this hub I will detail the properties of several well-established herbal cures and their relative uses in the realm of anxiety relief. Not every herbal remedy will serve however, and readers should note that often the unique chemical and biological properties of herbs make them very targeted.

Preface - The Nature Of Stress

Herbal remedies can serve as both a psychological salve as well as a physical one. Society is flooded with prescription medicine aimed at coaxing stress symptoms, and do very little to address the causes of a stressful episode. Fighting stress should be a concert of action, relieving symptoms on the one hand, and understanding the nature and causes of the episode on the other. Many people who suffer from chronic anxiety know very little about the use and biological origin of stress. But understanding stress can go a long way in finding emotional stability.

Panic attacks are a prime example of how the relationship between our minds and bodies is often misunderstood. Our minds have developed into large and complex entities that are able to simulate experience. In doing so, we react to threats that may not actually exist. When we have a panic attack our bodies are essentially reacting to what it considers to be a physical threat (that does not exist!), and the entire fight or flight mechanism kicks in. Your heart pounds as blood is pumped into your muscles to prepare for a fight, your eyes dilate in order to offer better night vision and your experience shortness of breath, not because you cannot breathe, but ironically because you are hyperventilating (breathing too much air -- again, a preparation for action). This is known as survival stress, and understanding that it is your bodies attempt to help you, and that you are not suffering a heart attack can help relieve anxiety.

Other forms of stress include: Internal stress, fatigue and environmental stress. While in many cases, our ability to simulate imaginary scenarios and non-existent threats can lead to biological misfiring, it is important to approach herbal remedies not as a cure, because you are not ill, but as a salve which will allow you to understand the causes and nature of what is occurring to you.


Which stress related symptom do you find occurs most often?

  • Fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Pain
  • Weight Change
  • Mood swings
  • Other
See results without voting

Symptoms Of Stress (things herbal medicine can deal with)

  • Mood swings - Going from excessive crying to feeling numb.
  • Loss of appetite or obesity - Stress can disrupt your eating habits.
  • Substance abuse - Quick fixes: alcohol,drugs and over-medication.
  • Feeling out of control - Life can seem unmanageable.
  • Paranoia
  • Decreased Sex Drive - While only leads to even great emotional stress.
  • Constant fatigue - We've all experienced this, it can lead us to feel that we are ill and aggravate our stress,
  • Immune System Suppression - We become likely prey for illnesses.
  • Digestive disorders - heartburn, acid reflex, IBS and more.
  • Nausea
  • Cramps and spasms
  • hair loss

There are many more symptoms that herbal remedies can help relieve, but note how these symptoms can lead to vicious cycles. For instance the tendency to believe that you are ill is aggravated by immune suppression. Or that hair loss due to stress will worsen stress levels and lead to further loss. The key is incorporating natural remedies to coax the symptoms and understand the vicious cycle and the nature of stress in order to face the problem in general.

In this hub we will be discussing herbs that deal with three common stress related problems: Anxiety (general),fatigue and Nausea.

Relaxant, anti-inflammatory and anti spasmodic.
Relaxant, anti-inflammatory and anti spasmodic.

Part 1 - Calming Herbs

  • Chamomile 
Usually prepared as a soothing tea, chamomile is a popular and well known relaxant. It contains anti-inflammatory properties (particularly indicated for treating rheumatisms) as well as being an anti-spasmodic (menstrual cramps) and a vasodilatory herb (lowers blood pressure).
It is also handy in treating colds, flus and generalized pains due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Warning! Avoid chamomile if you are taking blood thinners!

A popular natural sedative
A popular natural sedative
  • Valerian Root

Valerian soothes the nervous system and lowers cardiovascular stress (lowers heart stress while increasing force). It is usually used to treat hysteria, panic disorders and insomnia.
Valerian is also used as an anti-convulsant and pain reliever used to treat migraine headaches.Due to Valerian's sedative properties, it can be a valid alternative to benzodiazepine drugs.

Warning! Overdoses can occur in large doses, symptoms include:

  • Headache
  • Spasm, 
  • Heart palpitations,
  • Dizziness
  • Gastric distress
  • Sleeplessness
  • Confusion
  • Depresstion

Sedative and analgesic (know the sideffects)
Sedative and analgesic (know the sideffects)
  • Hops (Aged not fresh)
Aged hops are an efficient sedative, not to be confused with fresh ones that do not contain the same properties (although both stimulate digestion). 
Hops are also useful in combating anxiety, insomnia, gout, lupus and toothache or earache. Hops's bitter chemicals improve digestion and stimulate the petite which may be counter-productive if you suffer from stress-related overeating. 
Warning! Hops can induce drowsiness and allergic reactions. It can also interfere with certain common medications such as birth control pills. I recommend discussing the aptness of Hops with a family doctor. 

Improves circulation and brain function.
Improves circulation and brain function.

Part 2 - Combating Fatigue

  • Gingko biloba
This amazing herb provides very specific and beneficial properties to those suffering from chronic fatigue. This herb improves circulation and brain function and has been used to treat dementia and Alzheimer's disease (along with a plethora of other conditions: tinitus,vertigo dizziness and memory loss). 
The chinese once used this herb to increase sexual energy (due to its demonstrated effect on the the bodies vascular system) and it has also been used to treat infertility. 
Warning! Possible headaches and gastric problems.

Not only a world-class aphrodisiac.
Not only a world-class aphrodisiac.
  • Ginseng

Ginseng's ability to reduce fatigue is becoming apparent by way of scientific research. Cancer.net recently (June 2, 2007) wrote an interesting article detailing how Ginseng has been shown to reduce fatigue in cancer patients. A quote:

Participants taking the 1,000 mg and 2,000 mg amounts of ginseng reported lower fatigue levels, compared with those taking the placebo and 750 mg amounts of ginseng. In addition, 25% of people taking 1,000 mg of ginseng and 27% of patients taking 2,000 mg of ginseng reported that their fatigue levels were "moderately better" or "much better," compared with 10% of patients taking 750 mg of ginseng and 10% of patients taking the placebo.


Oh, and incidentally Ginseng is also a reputable aphrodisiac because it stimulates the endocrine glands.

Warning! Rare side effects include lack of concentration and a drop in blood sugar level.

A Brief Interlude - How To Prepare Herbs!

(click column header to sort results)
Herb  
Primary Effect  
Preparation  
Chamomile
Calming
Tea, Liquid Extract, Capsule, Tablet
Valerian
Calming, Sedative
Tea, Liquid Extract, Capsule, Tablet
Hops
Analgesic, Sedative
Tea, Extracts, Capsules
Gingko biloba
Improves circulation, Brain function
Tea (most commonly), Liquid Extract, Powder, Capsule
Ginseng
Stimulant, Increases Stamina
Capsules, Creams, Eaten Raw, Teas
Ginger
Nausea, Gastric Problems
Fresh or dry root, Capsules, Extracts, Cooking and Baking, Tinctures, Teas
Wild Yam
Nausea, Immunity
Capsules,Teas, Extracts

Part 3 - Dealing With Nausea

  • Ginger

Ginger might not seem palatable when feeling nauseous, however it is a renowned digestive aid and is commonly used to treat nausea in cancer patients, motion sickness and pregnancy, making it a useful and adaptable ally against feeling ill and vomiting. 

Ginger also contains antibacterial properties that make it useful in combating ulcers and diarrhea. Beyond this, its is also used as a preventative in cancer because it stimulates bile production in the liver preventing it from developing cancerous tumors. 

Ginger is also known to improve circulation, helping the body fight heart disease and preventing frostbite (by increasing blood flow to the extremities). 

Warning! Overdoses can occur! Despite being handy in fighting nausea in pregnancy it can cause abortions so a trip to the GP should be in order. Ginger can also interfere with anticoagulant medication and cause gastric acidity. Avoid large doses. 

Ginger Explained On Youtube!

Many benefits for very few side effects.
Many benefits for very few side effects.
  • Wild Yam
Wild Yam has often been touted as a useful herb with the following symptoms:
  • Menstrual cramps
  • Nausea
  • Intestinal colic
  • Inflammations
  • Spasms
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Gallbladder colics
  • Ulcerative colitis
The great thing about Wild Yam is that there is very little cause for concern when it comes to side-effects. The most you can expect is a little stomach discomfort or at most a rash if you are allergic to it. One of Wild Yam's most amazing properties then, is its safety and compatibility. 

Take the herbal Quiz!

Conclusion

Herbal remedies are a fantastic lean-to when it comes to fighting stress (although can not do the job all by themselves). However, despite the belief that tea is tea, and therefore not medicine, it can be easy to fall into pitfalls and overdose, ending up worse than when you started. Knowledge is key when integrating herbal remedies in your day-to-day routine, especially if you take medication or have any underlying condition.

I hope you enjoyed this hub as much as I enjoyed writing it, and in the hopes that it help you dribble stress-related obstacles, thanks for stopping by. 

Thooghun. 

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