Tension, stress, and anxiety are unavoidable parts of life. Everyone experiences their physical, mental, and emotional symptoms from time to time, but they can take a toll on your overall health and well-being when they are persistent. Natural relaxation supplements can provide a solution for those who wish to learn how to improve their mood.
Some natural stress relief and mood-stabilizing supplements include:
- GABA is an amino acid that is naturally manufactured by your brain. Acting as a chemical messenger, GABA inhibits nerve activity and calms the nervous system. This has led some experts to speculate that GABA benefits people suffering from stress and anxiety. Because studies have found that a lack of amino acids can interfere with sleep, people may choose to take a GABA supplement to address insomnia.
- Magnesium is an essential mineral, a nutrient that the body requires but cannot manufacture on its own. Many adults in the United States suffer from magnesium deficiencies because they do not eat enough foods rich in the mineral. Taking magnesium citrate, magnesium malate, or another magnesium supplement can help to bridge the diet gap and prevent symptoms of deficiencies. In addition, there is some evidence to suggest that the mineral may help to ease stress. Experts believe that the magnesium calming effect is likely linked to its ability to increase GABA levels in the body. As a result, some people take magnesium for anxiety.
Magnesium is also required for proper muscle function. Its role in the musculoskeletal system has led researchers to wonder, "does magnesium relax muscles?" Physiologists have determined that when the body does not have enough magnesium available, cramps and tightness may occur due to excessive contractions of the muscles. Based on these findings, magnesium muscle relaxant supplements are often used by those experiencing muscle tension.
- Chamomile or Matricaria recutita is a flowering plant that has been used as a natural remedy for centuries. It is another example of supplements to relax muscles commonly used by those who prefer natural remedies. Researchers also believe that the herb promotes feelings of calm and may improve sleep.
- Ashwagandha or Withania somnifera is an herb commonly used in Ayurvedic healing. Ashwagandha benefits the body by acting as an adaptogen, a substance that may help to counteract the effects of stress. It reduces excess levels of cortisol, the body’s stress hormone and its potential actions suggest that it is ideal for complementing the calming effects of magnesium.
- Passionflower or Passiflora incarnata has long been used for its potential calming benefits. Scientists now believe that the herb is beneficial due to its ability to raise GABA levels in the brain.
- Theanine or l-theanine is an amino acid produced by various species of tea plants and mushrooms. The amino acid is not commonly found in western diets and is usually taken as a supplement. Research indicates that l-theanine can cross the blood-brain barrier and may assist with nerve signaling and production of alpha waves in the brain, leading to a relaxed, yet alert, sensation. The amino acid may help to improve mental focus and calm the mind and body due to these actions.
- Glycine is an amino acid that the human body manufactures and absorbs from fish, meat, dairy products, and legumes. Studies have shown that glycine may interfere with the activities of norepinephrine, a chemical that is released in response to stress. This suggests that glycine may help to reduce stress.
- CBD or cannabidiol is a substance derived from the hemp plant. When taken on its own, CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system and has beneficial effects on mood, pain, and other areas. CBD is also non-psychoactive, meaning it won’t intoxicate or adversely affect brain function. Many people take CBD to improve their sleep, alleviate anxiety, and promote a good mood.
- Melatonin is a hormone that plays an essential role in balancing your sleep-wake cycle. With age, melatonin production naturally slows. Some studies have found that increasing melatonin levels with a supplement may help to improve sleep and may also beneficially influence immune function.
Ashwagandha, Magnesium and GABA Supplements
Some people prefer to take a standalone supplement that contains one ingredient believed to ease stress and improve mood; however, evidence suggests that taking the right combination of mood boosters may enhance the effectiveness of natural stress relief. Combination magnesium, GABA, and ashwagandha stress relief supplements allow you to reap the benefits of three key ingredients without having to worry about the dosage instructions for multiple products.
About Stress Relief and Mood Boosting Supplements
Keep in mind that research into the effectiveness of mood-enhancing supplements is ongoing. At this time, there is not enough evidence to prove that any supplement can improve mood and relieve tension for everyone who uses it. In other words, no one can say for sure if the answers to the questions "is magnesium calming?" or "is ashwagandha for anxiety effective?" are definitely "yes." Because natural supplements can cause side effects, you must consult your health care provider before using any product. Always follow the dosage instructions provided by the manufacturer unless a medical professional gives you other advice.