What are anxiety disorders?
Anxiety is the most common mental condition, globally. About one-third of people who experience anxiety seek any type of formal treatment. Anxiety causes people to explore holistic modalities. Excessive stress can occur both because of genetics and as a consequence of the surroundings. The development of pathological anxiety can be avoided with the assistance of preventive measures. Ayurvedic herbs and treatments for anxiety disorders start with identifying the root cause and develop a personalized plan of treatment.
How does Ayurveda view anxiety?
Ayurveda views anxiety as a dosha imbalance in which surplus Vata has collected in the nervous system. Stress is an expression of excess Vata in Mano vaha srota, the station of the mind. The ayurvedic treatment approach is to bring back the equilibrium and balance of the excess dosha. Ayurveda experts believe that excessive stress is due to an imbalance of Vata dosha. Vata is just one of the three doshas — or constitutions that encourage our homeostasis. Vata dosha embodies element air and space energy, the psychological wind. When Vata goes out of equilibrium, the excess energy can cause the so-called Citta vritti (literally, monkey mind).
Ayurvedic herbs & therapies for anxiety
How is anxiety disorder treatment in Ayurveda different?
Anxiety disorder therapy in Ayurveda takes a detailed view of a person’s physical, emotional, and spiritual problems. These attributes have an impact on prana Vata, a subsidiary of Vata dosha, that becomes aggravated with stress, anxiety, and depression. Pranavata weakens the nervous system and activates mental imbalance. Additionally, it weakens the neuro-hormonal system and nerve impulses. Ayurvedic treatment of anxiety disorder could entail controlling aggravated Pranavata and raising sattva guna, which envisages a secure and calm mind through self-realization and self-control, and appropriate changes in lifestyle and diet.
1. Diet & Foods: Ayurveda applies a holistic approach to treating stress and anxiety disorders, attempting to calm the brain. For the treatment of this imbalanced Vata dosha, herbal therapy is recommended, in addition to a diet which includes relatively fatty, but not heavy foods. The fats found in the avocado, salmon, olive oil, nuts, coconut, whole milk are an excellent treatment of our Vata. Also very helpful is to eat zucchini, rice, quinoa, and red beets. The recommended sweet fruits are plums, melons, and red grapes.
Ayurveda recommends the raw foods should be avoided for increased Vata. Spices that could boost our Pitta (fiery) dosha are utilized, such as cumin, nutmeg, dill, ginger, cinnamon, coriander, and cardamom. Warm drinks with honey are another way to balance Vata dosha. Additionally, it’s a great idea to eat in certain hours, as it is a part of their overall lifestyle change that Ayurveda supplies within this treatment.
Oils in any form are very effective in treating imbalanced Vata. All sorts of massages with essential oils are recommended, and before going to bed, you can massage your feet with these oils. This massage helps to enhance the quality of sleep, which is vital for managing anxiety. Though It is very useful to combine the herbal and dietary Regime of Ayurveda with physical action, you should not overdo it when it comes to intensity. The energy of raised Vata manifests in sudden tides. Vata dosha doesn’t react well to overload and fatigue.
Ayurvedic procedures for the treatment of anxiety disorders can be used together with the treatment prescribed by modern medicine, with respect to medications, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. It’s important to know that these ailments can be treated with high levels of success. Although anxiety typically doesn’t disappear completely, there’s a chance it can be handled in a way, so the individual can live a healthy and happy life.
2. Know your triggers: Even though you might not be able to control everything about your anxiety, you can start to elevate your consciousness around what components trigger it. Keeping track of your symptoms over time provides you insight into potential triggers. Include everything in your diary from everything you ate/drank, where you were, that caused some of your symptoms.
3. Concentrate on your breath: Sama Vritti (balanced breath) is a simple breathing technique for beginners, which you can do anytime, anywhere. Practicing this breathing exercise will calm your mind. How do you do it? Sit in a comfortable, cross-legged position with your back straight, or lie down to get a more restorative practice. Close your eyes and bring your awareness into your normal breath. Just observe, and don’t alter anything at first. When you are ready, start to inhale a count of 5, and exhale on a count of 5, then matching the amount of your inhale and exhale. Over time, experiment with counting to greater numbers–only ensure that your inhale and exhale remain the same length. Keep on breathing this way for many minutes, or until you feel your body and mind relax.
4. Shirodhara treatment: Ayurveda views regular body function as part of a healthful lifestyle.
The expression Shirodhara comes from the Sanskrit words Shiro (mind ) and dhara (flow). It’s a traditional Ayurvedic body treatment where a steady, gentle stream of warm oil is always poured on the forehead to help soothe and heal a frayed nervous system.
According to Ayurvedic teachings, the gentle but continuous application of oil stimulates healthy blood flow to the brain and adrenal gland. At the same time, certain additional herbs and essences can offer relief from symptoms of anxiety, migraines, insomnia, and neuralgia. Shirodhara works mostly on the mental sheath or “manomaya kosha,” as it’s known in Ayurveda. It’s intended to cultivate a feeling of deep mind/body comfort from head to toe, providing your nervous system the chance to start repairing itself organically. Studies indicate that Shirodhara contributes to a state of alert calmness like the relaxation response observed in meditation.
5. Ayurvedic herbs: Ashwagandha: Ashwagandha has been used in India and Africa as a Rasayana (rejuvenating) herb, Ashwagandha has recently gained fame in Western herbalism for its adaptogenic qualities. According to ancient Ayurvedic texts, one that regularly takes Ashwagandha “obtains longevity, regains youthfulness, keeps a sharp memory, remains free of disease, has a lustrous complexion and strength of a horse.” Typically there is Ashwagandha in powder form, made of the dried plant origin. The berries and leaves are also used in some circumstances, but this is much less common. Mixing Ashwagandha with pungent spices and ghee is a traditional Ayurvedic treatment for people who suffer from stress. The spices help in the absorption of the Ashwagandha, while the ghee is a carrier with a very good source of healthy fat.
6. Integrative Ayurvedic treatments: An allover Ayurvedic approach to stress may include yoga, meditation, dietary modifications, and time in nature. It might also include Ayurvedic herbs. Vata imbalance can be connected with a hyper-excitable nervous system and difficulty sleeping. If you have ever heard somebody say they feel “ungrounded,” that is a classic description of Vata imbalance. It has too much energy in mind, not enough in the feet. Thus, If Vata is upset, you are feeling ungrounded–disconnected from the ground. To deal with stress /Vata imbalance, you need to stabilize your energy-calm the nervous system, relax the mind, release obsessive ideas, connect to your own body and into the earth, and finally surrender to the flow of the Universe.
7. Meditation: Meditation is a wonderful, evidence-based instrument for healing anxiety. It’s an early technology for gaining control over the mind. Meditation involves diligent practice, letting go of ideas, regulating the breath, and surrendering into the open area of the present moment. Meditation could be considered training for the remainder of life. If you become proficient in controlling your mind while seated on the meditation cushion, you can more easily handle your head during the remainder of the day. In meditation, you become jaded by the strength of your thoughts. You learn to be compassionate to the struggle – the struggle to have a moment of stillness and the battle to have peace for the rest of your life. Surrender lets you become less attached to what might happen, is happening, or did occur and can help you concentrate instead on finding your way to your heart in each moment. To cure anxiety at its roots that you would like to attempt and discover a way to be loving in the face of anxiety.
Lifestyle changes for anxiety
Lifestyle factors to balance Vata and reduce anxiety
1. Ayurvedic diet: Eat hot, nourishing food (steamed veggies, homemade soups, and baked squash) for many meals of the day (until stress improves considerably and remains that way). Continue this diet more lasting if your primary dosha is Vata or Kapha.
2. Time management: Create a relatively good structure for your day. Follow a routine and avoid erratic lifestyle options. This routine implies work at regular times, exercise regularly (and at regular times), sleep at regular times, and spend some time outside every morning and evening. The therapeutic function of character is a part of ancient Ayurveda and endorsed by science.
3. Yoga: Get into 15-plus minutes of yoga routine every day. Yoga has been demonstrated by multiple great quality scientific studies to be helpful for stress. It’s soothing for the nervous system, which is agitated when Vata is out of equilibrium and/or you’re anxious. Yoga raises glutathione, a natural antioxidant (helps you seem youthful and glowing, prevents illness, and detoxifies the body). Combine meditation after doing yoga in the morning.
4. Meditate for 10-15 minutes every day. This is best built into a routine after yoga each morning.
5. Relaxing bath: Have a nightly bath in sea salt and ginger powder while at the same time drinking ginger tea. Ginger is very warming. Vata is regarded as cold or cool energy, so hot temperatures are balancing for this trendy, chaotic energy. Too much ginger can be aggravating to the Pitta dosha long term.
6. Herbal remedies, along with the behavioral approaches, can help people improve nervousness, lower Vata to lower stress levels. Many have used it over centuries, and scientific research is confirming the same.
Your anxiety may show you how to best care for yourself and encourage you to research resources that your unique mind-body-spirit system needs to flourish in this world.
Anxiety is a common but complex problem and has no easy solutions. The best improvements come with integrative therapies that include diet, yoga, meditation, and lifestyle changes. Many experience dramatic improvements in their stress levels if these suggestions are always and diligently practiced. Some individuals are more sensitive and more vulnerable to anxiety. Realistic expectations are useful, particularly if you think yourself to be somewhat more vulnerable to stress and nervousness.