Anxiety and mental health issues have become a worldwide epidemic. More and more people are being diagnosed with anxiety disorders with the condition also greatly affecting the economy due to the number of days lost at work. In fact, by 2030 the cost to the global economy of all mental health problems could amount to £13 trillion, according to the World Economic Forum. A new trial has shown that taking a certain natural supplement could greatly reduce the symptoms of anxiety. What is it?
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Clinical trials have shown that pharmaceutical quality lavender oil helps relieve anxiety, improves the mental health condition of patients and improves health-related quality of life when taken orally as a daily capsule.
Lavender oil capsules work by modulating hyperactive nerve cells in the brain that cause anxiety.
More than 15 clinical trials show that a daily capsule of uniquely prepared, pharmaceutical quality lavender oil can relieve the symptoms of anxiety, with benefits evident in just two weeks.
The capsules were found to be as effective as commonly used anti-anxiety medications.
In one study, 70 percent of those taking the specially prepared lavender oil capsules rated a “much” or “very much” improved improvement of symptoms of anxiety.
The uniquely prepared lavender oil available Kalms Lavender One-A-Day capsules could help improve the psychological effects of anxiety.
CEO of Kalms, Nicky Lidbetter said: “Anxiety is one of the most prevalent mental health conditions in the UK with one in five people reporting feelings of anxiousness a lot or all of the time (and) more than 45 million working days have been lost due to anxiety in the past three years.
“Psychological symptoms of anxiety include worry, spinning thoughts and insomnia due to a racing mind.
“Anxiety can also affect the body causing issues such as racing heartbeat, nausea, headaches and muscle tension. These symptoms can be very distressing.”
The feelings of anxiety occur due to an imbalance in the way the body processes environmental and sensory stimuli.
A disproportionate ‘excitatory’ response and excessive release of neurotransmitters between nerve cells in the brain, leads to overstimulation of the nervous system and feelings of anxiety.
Research suggests the uniquely prepared, pharmaceutical quality lavender oil can reduce excessive neurotransmitter activity, thus reducing overstimulation and hyperactivity of the nervous response and improving symptoms of anxiety.
The results are comparable to the effects seen form commonly used anti-anxiety medications, including the benzodiazepine lorazepam and selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) paroxetine prescribed in generalised anxiety disorder.
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Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans of participants’ brains also suggest that compared to placebo, the unique lavender oil significantly reduces the binding potential of the neurotransmitter Serotonin in the regions of the brain that are involved in the regulation of anxiety.
Professor of psychiatry Dr Siegfried Kasper said: “This is a very exciting development for anxiety as the research demonstrates the lavender oil capsules not only reduce both physical and psychological symptoms of anxiety but also have a beneficial effect on health-related quality of life, without problems such as sedation, addiction or interaction with other medications.”
The NHS added: “For centuries, people have used lavender in the belief that its distinctive smell is relaxing.
Many people swear by lavender spray on the pillow to help them sleep. But although the relaxing effect of lavender is widely recognised, we don’t know how it works or which chemical pathways in the body are involved.
Lavender’s smell is due to the chemical linalool. It’s interesting that actually smelling linalool, rather than simply inhaling the compound, seems to be essential for the calming effect to take place.
There are also many things you can do yourself to help reduce your anxiety, such as exercising regularly, cutting down on alcohol and caffeine, and learning to relax.
If the scent of lavender helps you relax, that may be worth trying.”
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