Winter can be a tough time. Not only is the weather dull and gray, but everyone around you is also down with cold and flu. Nearly 300 million people in the world suffer from anxiety and depression, seasonal or otherwise, according to WHO. However, there are a number of ways to get over anxiety, and what could be better than a hot steaming cup of tea?
With the New Year just beginning, it’s a good time to take control of your life and keep depression and anxiety at an arm’s length. Here are some tips to brew tea to ward off those pesky winter blues:
Chamomile for insomnia
Sleeplessness is one of the major symptoms of depression, as well as anxiety disorder. Luckily, chamomile tea is an easy way to cure insomnia. Chamomile tea has proven to be effective in aiding sleeplessness and lifting your mood. In fact, it can also help build your immunity, relieve headaches and aid digestion. In addition, it helps you relax and fall asleep much faster.
Chamomile has been used as an antidepressant for many years. Back in the old Egyptian times, people used chamomile as a remedy for various anxiety disorders. A popular study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology in 2010 showed that having chamomile tea decreases anxiety. So, the next time you brew some tea, remember to add some chamomile to the mix!
A pinch of turmeric
Turmeric, popular for being a natural healing agent, can also be used as a mood lifter. Turmeric heals you from inside out and keeps you healthy and fit.
A recent study published in the Phytotherapy Research Journal tested the use of turmeric as an anti-depressant against the drug Prozac. The results show that curcumin (found in turmeric) can be used as an effective method of treatment in patients with depression, without the risk of any side effects. It can even help with the onset of dementia.
When you feel better physically, your mental health will improve too, thus your anxiety levels will go down.
Lemon Balm for relaxation
Lemon Balm, originally from the mint family, is a memory boosting and anti-anxiety herb. Lemon Balm also contains a muscle relaxant which allows relaxation and restful sleep. This herb is mostly used for anti-anxiety purposes. In addition to its anti-anxiety properties, Lemon Balm tea can also be used to provide relief from fatigue and digestive problems like bloating, gas, vomiting, heartburn etc. This herb may also help women with menstrual pain and can sometimes even stimulate weak menstrual cycles.
Brew rose petals
Rose petals are great for your skin and tea made out of it works well as a natural anxiety reliever. Rose bud tea has an amazing fragrance and is packed with vitamin C and antioxidants. This makes it the best tea for times when your mind and body need a boost. Rose bud tea can help ease the mind and reduce stress, thereby, reducing anxiety levels. It can be made with both fresh or dried rose petals, however, remember to wash dried rose petals prior to use. Additionally, Rose tea can also help improve your skin, hair and acne problems. The caffeine-free, breathe easy tea boosts the immunity and digestive systems, and can even help with weight loss!
According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, a study shows that steeping one tea spoon of died passionflower in a cup of boiling water for 10 minutes can help you relax. This herb helps by increasing the levels of relaxing neurotransmitters in your brain and thus lets you go to sleep peacefully. Some studies also show that this herb increases the production of gamma-aminobutyric acid or GABA in the brain. GABA is an amino acid that promotes a sense of calmness and improves the mood. Ideally, this tea should be taken one hour prior to your bed time.
All of these teas should be sipped while hot to reap maximum benefits of the herbs. For the best experience, have a cup after some meditation or yoga. Aside from drinking herbal teas, you can also make some alterations in your diet and reduce the intake of refined and processed food, as they may be linked to higher anxiety levels. Instead, opt for a balanced diet of carbs, proteins, fats and minerals.