*Disclaimer: I am in no way a medical professional. The below recommended vitamins and minerals are things I found and now use to manage my own anxiety, however, before you take any of the below vitamins please discuss with your doctor. Use my recommendations at your own discretion.
Anxiety is something that I had to work hard to figure out, and I still haven’t figured it out one hundred percent. I don’t think anyone ever does. I have had to really research and look into anxiety, try new tips and tricks, as well as use coping skills in order to manage it to the point that I am now.
One of the easiest things to help me manage my anxiety is simply taking care of my body’s basic nutrient and vitamin needs. In the midst of researching, I found a lot of information on being aware of what nutrients your body needs to be the best it can be physically, mentally, and emotionally. I would have never thought that vitamins and supplements would make that much of a difference, but they really do. Upon researching, I decided that I needed to know if I was getting proper nutrients, and if I had deficiencies. I became intrigued with the idea that certain vitamins could really help with my anxiety. It sounded too good to be true, but it wasn’t.
Vitamins and minerals are extremely important for your body’s overall health and function. In my research I found vitamins that make a big difference in both mood and anxiety. I also found that some vitamin deficiency’s result in rapid heart beat, nervousness, and fatigue…hmmm, I remember thinking… that sounds oddly like my anxiety. Is my body making my anxiety worse, because I am not being aware that it needs a certain vitamin?
It was fascinating to read that you can manage your mood and anxiety simply by taking a vitamin pill, or by eating a lot of foods that are rich in a specific vitamin. When I first started having anxiety, I was unsure of what I could do that would actually work. A dear friend of mine recommended looking into and researching vitamins and minerals that help with anxiety, and man am I glad that I did. There is a very real connection with what vitamins our bodies need and how that relates to anxiety. Do yourself a favor and check to make sure you are getting the vitamins below.
This is my number one recommendation for a vitamin that I use weekly to manage my anxiety. Seriously, I can’t talk enough about how awesome magnesium is, and how much it has helped me manage my anxiety. If I can’t sleep, I take magnesium. If I feel anxious, I take magnesium. If I know I am going to have a stressful day that might bring out my anxiety, I take magnesium. If you are deficient in magnesium it can cause weakness, fatigue, nervousness, and rapid pulse; all of which make your anxiety much worse. If you are deficient in magnesium this can bring on an anxiety attack when you otherwise wouldn’t have had it. It not only works to manage and stay on top of your anxiety when you take magnesium daily or weekly, but if you are in the midst of a panic attack or having a particularly anxious day you can take it to help calm down in that moment. I use Natural Calm, and it is amazing.
I know most people think of calcium and associate it with their mom trying to get them to drink their milk for strong bones. However, lots of things in your body depend on calcium to work properly. Your heart, muscles, and nerves need calcium to function properly. Guess what else calcium effects? Your mood. Calcium is important for regulating our mood. Calcium acts as a natural sedative with calming and relaxing effects. I get the Natural Calm (my magnesium supplement I mentioned above) with added Calcium. This lets me kill two birds with one stone. These two supplements combined in my daily Natural Calm dose help me manage my anxiety extremely well.
3. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a well-known antioxidant, and guess what? Antioxidants are super important for your body, and they even help you manage anxiety symptoms. Vitamin C helps to combat stress and repair the damage that is done to your body by stress and anxiety. Drink that orange juice, eat that kiwi, or take that Vitamin C tablet. Vitamin C also helps keep you healthy by boosting your immune system. Get your Vitamin C people!
4. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is a mood and energy booster. That means if you are deficient in Vitamin D it can make you more tired, it can effect mood changes, and can make you irritable. Yikes, right? All of the symptoms of a Vitamin D deficiency make anxiety worse, and can spiral you into anxiety even if it was under control. So get your tush outside and soak up some sun, or take yourself a Vitamin D supplement.
5. Vitamin B
Vitamin B helps the body make the hormone serotonin, which influences mood. If you do not have enough Vitamin B in your body, your mood will be effected. This of course directly effects your anxiety. Take that Vitamin B!
Probiotics are good for you in so many different ways. Maintaining a healthy amount of gut bacteria, which is what a probiotic does, helps your body have a healthy response to chronic stress. Probiotics have also been shown to promote good mental health. Pick out a good probiotic, and start taking it.
7. Fish Oil
You need fat. Yep, you heard that right. Get your fat! The right fats are extremely important for you to have, so make sure you get them into your diet. I take a Fish Oil each day. Fish Oil, Omega-3, is the basic building blocks of the brain and nervous system, so taking fish oil helps maintain a healthy level for brain function.
These are the seven vitamins I take on a daily or weekly schedule to help with my anxiety. I feel powerful making sure that my body is equipped with what it needs to help me conquer and manage my anxiety. Knowing that my body is fueled with the right things to help my anxiety is extremely important. I would love to hear the vitamins or supplements that you may take to manage your anxiety.
Until next time,
Tomorrow is my daughters’ first birthday (sweetness), so I want to share a personal reflection of a time when I had to deal with anxiety in this first year of motherhood. One night shortly after I had our daughter, I was stricken with heart fluttering anxiety that left me shaking. I was not able to go to sleep, because I had just read an article about heart problems related to women after delivery. Terrified that I was now developing this problem, I didn’t want to close my eyes for fear that something would happen in the night, and I would no longer be with my new daughter and husband the next morning. Dramatic much? Yes, but that is also how I truly felt.
I was holding Eleanor in my arms, and as I watched her sleep, I fought for the control I needed to overcome the irrational anxiety I was feeling. I needed to sleep and relax my body, so that I could be the mother and wife I wanted to be. I did not want this perfect little human to feel any of my stress. I was exhausted after 30 hours of labor and a complicated C-section, and I was pooped trying to exclusively breast feed my baby who was eating around the clock like they do in those first few days.
I confided in my husband and asked him to help me somehow. I needed to not think about the heart problem, I needed to relax enough to go to sleep, and I needed to be able to stop the overwhelming feeling of fear I had as I laid in bed. I asked him to hold me, to talk me through it, to distract me, etc. Instead, he got frustrated that I wouldn’t go to sleep. Chris told me to just turn my brain off and that I was so sleep deprived that I was having anxiety and stress related to that. “Just close your eyes and you’ll be fine”, he said. Chris was dismissive of my fears and worries that night, and in that moment made me feel like there was something wrong with me, because I couldn’t turn off the thoughts and go to sleep.
That said, I laid there that night allowing myself to get more and more worked up and I wrote to him what I was feeling. I did this not so he would feel bad the next morning, but so that he would maybe understand me better and what I needed.
A quick goodnight kiss and a mumbled love you, is that all I get tonight? You did not have time to hold me, to tell me it was going to be okay, or to distract me with one of your jokes? I just needed you to make me feel safe. I just needed 5 minutes of you time. You knew I was having a really hard time tonight, and I needed you. I can’t do this on my own when I am dealing with anxiety like this. I got nothing from you, and you are the person I view as my protector. I have told you countless times over the years how sorry I am that you have to live with my anxiety. I know it effects you as much as it does me.
As hurt as I am that you won’t even comfort me, more than anything I am overwhelmed with shame that this is all in my head; and that there’s something wrong with me that makes you judge me as less than the woman I am. I am broken that I annoy you when I get like this, and there is nothing I can do right now that I am not already doing to get over these feelings. I have spent the last hour crying in an attempt to let it all out, calm down, and win a battle against my worry. I have read scripture and I have been praying.
I know you think that I can control my fear and anxiety since I do most days, but sometimes I can’t do it on my own. I can’t just feel and say “it will be fine” to the worry and fear. In this moment, right now laying next to you, I feel that this fear is valid and it is real. In this moment, it consumes me.
It breaks my heart that the person I count on the most is not able or willing to come love me through this right now. I know that is a lot of pressure to put on you, but you are always my rock and tonight I needed you. I feel let down, and at the same time I feel horrible that I expect this much from you. I feel guilt that I look less than I should in your eyes because of this horrible thing I live with. I am so sad that I am angry at you for making me feel alone and unsupported tonight, when I am scared and hurting. I am mad at myself that this anxiety is making me feel less towards you than I should tonight. I hate that anxiety is affecting us.
I know in the morning I will regret sending this to you, because in some ways I know this will make you feel bad. I hope you know that you will never be viewed as any less of my hero, and that I will never doubt your love for me. I just want you to be able, for just one moment, to understand how I feel and know what I need. Next time, I need you to love me through this and not just ignore it. It will not just go away because it has been swept under a rug.
I will be working on myself and trying hard to be a better wife for you and mother to Eleanor. I know my anxiety has been much better these past few years. I’m afraid though that every now and then I may still have to deal with the intensity of my anxiety, and next time I want you to understand how it feels.
All my love forever and always.
Your imperfectly perfect wife,
Now let me say that Chris is ALWAYS my number one support and has seen me through the worst of times with a smile on his face and nothing but pure love/care for me in his heart; but that night he was exhausted himself and he was spent after helping care for a five day old baby girl. Chris could not be there for me, because he needed to sleep and rest. Looking back, I understand that he was not in a position to help me when he had nothing left to give. The next morning, Chris hung his head and apologized profusely and I held my head in shame that I had made him feel that bad. Chris has since then ALWAYS made it a point to not dismiss me, and he told me he did not not know how he made me feel when he dismissed my feelings until this note.
I am sure I am not alone in my thoughts and feelings, which is why today, I wanted to share a very personal aspect of my anxiety.
Until next week,
Hey all you awesome people reading my blog. I'm Ginger and this blog chronicles how I live my life fabulously with anxiety.