I was diagnosed with Anxiety Disorder in 1994 in the seventh year of my recovery from addiction, by a specialist in the field. I know I’m not the only one. Many of us deal with the debilitating symptoms of anxiety at different times in our lives.
For a few years medication helped to blanket my brain with the chemicals it didn’t produce on its own. With the help of this medication and coupled with psychotherapy , I committed myself to healing. Sessions started weekly, then monthly, and eventually, to carrying my therapists number in my pocket just in case.
Time frame in healing is as individual as recovery. For me, I needed the support of a twelve step program, a concentrated nutrient dense food plan to follow, psychotherapy, a psychiatrist for medication modification, all complimenting each other, to become healthy in mind body and spirit. It’s an understatement to just say it worked. It has been life altering and given me a profound new freedom. I lived free of any major anxiety for many years.
The old fears that blocked me are gone. Memories come up from time to time, but the old levels of fear are not a high trigger point any longer. They have become right sized. I moved from a victim mentality, to taking responsibility for my life. On occasion, I can feel a need to stay close to home when I am feeling rundown. The tools I’ve learned, help me to know how to take care of myself at these more vulnerable times.
These are some of the anxiety symptoms we can experience:
- Sweating, hot or cold sensations
- Dizziness and or shortness of breath
- Feelings of being trapped so avoiding social events
- Fear of dying
- Unable to focus or pay attention
- Lightning jolts through the body for no apparent reason
- Fight or flight response leading to a more severe panic attack
- Racing heart and increased blood pressure
- Nausea or vomiting
- Distress bowel and/or frequent urination
Could you be feeding your anxiety?
As I mentioned above diet and nutrient dense foods are mandatory to stay healthy and in touch with our needs. If I am running my body on nicotine, simple sugars, high carbs, coffees, diet and or caffeinated beverages, as well as living a highly stressed and or busy lifestyle, then I assure you, your anxiety is being fed and it’s growing big and strong.
It makes total sense that we have feelings of anxiety when we are burning the candle at both ends. The lie that anxiety tells us, is to speed things up, move faster, but, what we need to do is quite the opposite.
Sometimes it’s as simple as slowing down. You can do a spot check list so see if you’re covering the basics.
When did I last eat something….
Am I thirsty….
Can I take a catnap….
Do I need to call a friend to talk about something that’s bothering me….
Maybe I just need to breathe….
Perhaps take a 15 to 30 minute walk….
First Things First.
Top of the list in health overall, is the friendly bacteria in our digestive system, our plumbing, referred to as the gut, and healthy microbes. Believe it or not when our gut health is out of balance anxiety and depression increase. Many other problems including any inflammatory conditions that are usually associated with Chronic pain levels.
We need to eat food that helps our body make the good microbes. Fermented foods like Kefir and sauerkraut are great choices. However, it usually is wise to take a supplement form to be restored to a proper balance. It’s important to choose a good product. For best, trusted and safe options see my product website here.
So roll up your sleeves and let’s get to work.
My recommendations for combating anxiety symptoms on a nutritional level go like this!
- Proper Hydration is key. Often just drinking a full glass of purified water is what we need
- Avoid caffeinated beverages, hot or cold, they only serve to stimulate and increase anxiety
- Refined sugars feed the adrenaline, increase stress and deplete gut health
- Desserts, candy, ice cream, breads, cereals, and pastas for the most part, are broken down into refined sugars
- It is now recommended to have 6-11 servings of good fats a day and 2-3 servings of the grain groups
- Omega 3 fatty acids taken from New Zealand pure waters (see my site) can relieve symptoms of ADD/ADHD, Anxiety, Depression and other learning disabilities
- Foundational Pure Protein Shakes and Multi Mineral Supplements aid overall health
- Taking a properly balanced Probiotic to feed the body the friendly microbes and eating fermented foods daily
- Eating protein in smaller portions and mixing them up in the day
- Eat more real and wholesome foods throughout the day
- Magnesium is a common aide to Anxiety along with Vitamin D and Calcium
Taking time to be still.
Meditation is mandatory for me. There are so many ways we can add this support to our lives. What best suits you and meets you where you are?
Being still with nature, taking a bath, aromatherapy, getting a message, listening to guided meditations, calming music to turn off the thinking? There are many ways to meditate and they all don’t involve sitting still. Do some research and choose what’s right for you.
If you have unresolved issues therapists can help. Many offer non addictive anxiety medications that are very successful at treating symptoms of anxiety.
Remember, there are lots of reasons we can have anxiety and our hope is in removing the causes, not just treating the symptoms. With the correct healing, meeting nutrient needs, exercises, and mindfulness practices we learn to reprogram our mind and body responses.
Please feel free to leave comments below. I invite you to take advantage of the complimentary assessment at my site TODAY!
Here’s to your Health,
Kathleen Russell, CNC.HC
Disclaimer: The information above is meant to be suggestive only. Take what you need and leave the rest. When choosing to implement any changes to your diet consult primary medical team.
Great article. I find certain foods, especially sugar can put me in a tailspin. You also mentioned meditation, so important. I have to listen to my body and slow down or even stop some days. That has been so helpful. I find I am actually more effective during my day if I slow down.
Thanks for leaving your supportive comment. It is amazing when we can be mindful of the self care and move into the solution. Working with a proper group of support opens up our freedoms to what works best. 🙂
Great article….Lots of stuff I already know, but fall into the category of chronic pain for many years now. Some days it is even hard to go to the store for the proper foods…I am getting better at choosing the right things to do…but I have to admit when dealing with pain, I find it easy to drop back to comfort foods…not good…progress not perfection. Thanks Kathy.
Thanks so much for your comment. I appreciate hearing from You.
I can relate to the rougher days~ I too when the low days are present I am less inspired to make a meal that is best serving.
What tools can you put in place in advance to set up for these rougher days?
I speak of the pre-planning tool as this one saves me the most. When I am up to the challenge, (and I look for one day a week to do this) I shop for the quick fix healthier options.
Pure Protein Shakes and bars at the Product site are fantastic. They offer the balance of what we need and help us get out of the funks because they feed the core that also effects mode and chronic pain.
I like to say that “the abcs” Essentials- Amino’s, Omegas, and Minerals) allow the body to do for us what it can not do without our help.
Please don’t hesitate to to connect with me at my site or at the
“Health is Wealth Women in Recovery facebook page for ideas support and connection.
Good Job Kathy!!!
I use “Calm” app. It’s a yearly fee but soooo worth it and it has adult bedtime stories too. There is a trial period. We tell people to meditate, but not how to do it. Not until the last 5 years or so have I heard more on meditation, and that possibly is because I got into trauma recovery.
I am passing this onto my pigeons. It’s up to them whether they pick up the tools or not.
Keep up the good works!! HUGZ