Anxiety, depression, and other emotional problems affect millions of Americans each year. Despite our advances in modern medicine the number of Americans affected by mood disorders is increasing rather than decreasing.

While a better understanding of mood disorders is necessary much evidence emerges that lifestyle, nutrition, and genetics have a significant impact on how we feel. Some of us have a genetic predisposition and are more susceptible to anxiety or depression than others. With a proper understanding of their biochemistry and lifestyle adjustments many can lead a perfectly happy and fulfilled life.

Often it is our lifestyle which makes most of us sick. Too much stress and lack of good nutrition can easily deplete vital nutrients, hormones, and neurochemicals and cause us to feel tired, depressed, and anxious.

Here a few tips on how to ease your anxiety:

  • Eliminate caffeine, diet pills, and decongestants — if you suffer from chronic congestion or allergies, look for an acupuncturist who will help you eliminate those
  • Manage your stress — meditation, yoga, acupuncture, and other relaxation techniques combat stress and reduce anxiety
  • Get proper sleep — sleep does not only provide you with more energy but is crucial in processing daily stress and trauma. If you have problems sleeping, consult with an acupuncturist
  • Take a look at your diet — what we eat and how we eat greatly influences how we feel
  • Exercise regularly — find something that’s fun to release your built up stress. But don’t exercise too late if this interferes with your sleep
  • Try to shift your attitude towards a positive one — conscious effort to look at the glass as half full can pay off over time
  • Visualization — regularly imagine yourself handling stressful situations calmly and confidently. Over time you will notice yourself handling those situations differently in real life
  • Seek out professional help — counseling can be very helpful to deal with reoccurring stressors in life, especially stressors from personal relationships. Cognitive-behavioral therapy can help shift your reflex responses to stressful situations. Herbs and supplements can be a powerful alternative to prescription medications
  • Let your family and/or close friends know what’s going on — Support is key!