Whether it’s because of relentless schedules, increasing responsibilities, or a genetic predisposition, anxiety disorders are now one of the leading mental health issues in America. Public health experts estimate that up to 19% of us struggle with the symptoms of high anxiety levels — such as insomnia, restlessness, and even panic attacks — at least once a year.
If this is currently your struggle, now’s the time to learn more about the best vitamins for anxiety and depression.
Can supplements and vitamins boost your mental health?
In short, yes: even if they can’t always completely eliminate the symptoms of anxiety by themselves, vitamins can help you manage your stress levels, improve your sleep quality, and keep chronic mood disorders at bay.
Usually, mental well-being depends on a careful balance of physical and environmental conditions, so it can’t be easily fixed with a single “one size fits all” medication. Anxiety often overlaps with depression symptoms, and therefore, it’s often treated with the same antidepressants. However, these medications can temporarily increase restlessness or sleep disorders, and they can’t lower your levels of cortisol (the stress hormone that often sets off anxiety) by themselves.
Instead, the most effective methods to treat generalized anxiety disorder include combining anxiety medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes. Just like with depression, IV vitamin infusions can help see you through the darkest times, and play a critical role in supporting long-term recovery.
What are the best supplements to combat anxiety?
Vitamins, minerals, and other micronutrients can all impact brain function and regulate the nervous system. They can support the natural production of “happy neurotransmitters” like serotonin, lessening the scarier physical symptoms of anxiety attacks like high blood pressure, or increasing your overall energy levels — which will make it easier to deal with the side effects of medication, and help you stick through the other parts of your holistic mental health plan.
So far, researchers have been able to verify the benefits of the following vitamins:
1. Vitamin B6 for anxiety
Also known as pyridoxine, this vitamin helps set off many chain reactions involved in amino acid digestion. As a result, it is well established as an energy booster, and for its importance in keeping hair, skin, and muscle fibers healthy.
But as some studies show, an extra burst of vitamin B6 can go further. According to a recent randomized controlled trial, high doses of vitamin B6 can lower the intensity of anxiety symptoms amidst a crisis. The researchers believe this is because pyridoxine can boost the production of GABA — a brain chemical that can slow down the nervous system.
2. Vitamin B12 and anxiety
The link between B12, anxiety, and overall mental health is often a dramatic one. This vitamin’s main role is to regulate the nervous system, so even slightly low levels of B12 (or cobalamin) can leave you feeling jittery, weepy, and de-energized. In more advanced stages, a lack of vitamin B12 can cause complex health conditions, such as anemia, psychosis, or loss of muscle function.
What’s more, it is relatively easy to lack vitamin B12. Our ability to absorb it decreases as we age, and it is notoriously difficult to find for vegetarians, vegans, and those with chronic digestive conditions such as inflammatory bowel disease.
3. Does vitamin C help with anxiety?
A powerful antioxidant, vitamin C is also one of the best vitamins for nervousness and anxiety; it plays an important role in neutralizing the effects of stress. If you are battling chronic major depressive disorder alongside anxiety, a steady supply of vitamin C will help you face the “crunch periods” that could otherwise trigger a more severe episode.
As a secondary bonus, its effect on the immune system will also protect your treatment continuity: no more passing touches of flu to get in the way of your healthcare plan!
4. Vitamin D and anxiety
The relationship between vitamin D and anxiety is well-known and well-documented. Vitamin D deficiency is one of the main factors behind Seasonal Affective Disorder or SAD, which can cause severe symptoms of anxiety and depression during the winter months.
As a result, there are many placebo-controlled studies (and even a major systematic review) showing that both vitamin D supplements and UV lamps (which boost vitamin D levels) can have a noticeable effect on the frequency of anxiety symptoms.
5. Does magnesium help with anxiety?
Magnesium is not a vitamin, but an essential mineral. Yet, we feel we need to include it because of its ability to boost brain function as a whole. Magnesium supplementation has been shown to:
- Directly lower symptoms of anxiety.
- Increase attention and concentration, therefore lowering a major source of stress.
- Regulate the mood swings and restlessness that accompany Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS).
What about herbal supplements for anxiety?
Currently, there is no shortage of options to treat anxiety naturally. However, not all natural supplement brands will offer high-quality, easy-to-absorb ingredients, and not all herbs are equally supported by research.
Still, it’s undeniable that many supplements and capsules can bring major benefits. If you’re interested in researching this option further, here’s a quick rundown of the most popular options:
- Valerian and chamomile have strong natural calming agents, which can offer a short-term effect when you’re feeling on edge.
- CBD or cannabidiol can lower the intensity of chronic anxiety symptoms. However, it won’t address an impending crisis (such as a looming panic attack), and not everyone is comfortable with it.
- Fish oil or other omega-3 fatty acids are believed to improve overall brain function, including mood, memory, and resilience to stress.
- Green tea has high levels of L-theanine, which may boost GABA production. Just be mindful of the caffeine content.
- Ashwagandha is a commonly-touted “adaptogen” that can help the body deal with the physical effects of stress. Its effect on the psychological ones is still under research.
- Passionflower has a soothing aroma and it’s often included in “proprietary” anti-anxiety blends. However, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health warns that the evidence behind it is inconclusive.
Keep in mind that herbal supplements are not approved by the FDA and may have negative interactions with prescription medications. Always check with your healthcare provider before adding any supplements to your routine.
Do you need vitamins that help with anxiety and depression? Go the IV route!
Whenever discussing the therapeutic effects of vitamin infusions with a new patient, this question eventually comes up in one way or another: “So, why can’t I just take a multivitamin every day and be done with it?”
When we look at which vitamins are good for anxiety, it’s easy to notice that most of them come in capsule or tablet form. Vitamin B complex tablets, for example, are cheap and sold at almost any drugstore in the world.
But do they yield the same effects? Unfortunately, no. When you take oral supplements, you’ll rarely be getting the full dosage advertised on the bottle. Instead, most of it will immediately degrade as it comes into contact with your stomach acids. Then, what’s left will still need to pass through your digestive system and your liver before you can feel any effects. And with some brands, the compounds offered are not even formulated in a way your body can use them!
Only IV (intravenous) infusions will allow you to consistently control the dosage and quality of your vitamin therapy. This will deliver your ideal vitamin combination directly to your bloodstream. Each vitamin will be absorbed immediately, and you will feel its effects all around your body, rather than just on your stomach.
Looking for IV infusions that combat depression near LA?
At IV Vitamin Therapy, we offer a full-service boutique-style medical office, where we help each patient identify the recipe they need to achieve optimum health.
We work with a variety of vitamins, minerals, and natural nutrients, all specially formulated for intravenous injection or transfusion. Our founder, Dr. Nazarian, is thoroughly experienced in supplementary and sports medicine and specializes in providing tailored support to maximize your performance in every facet of life.
You can access our expert medical advice and services from our Beverly Hills office. In this spa-like environment, you can recharge your batteries both inside and outside, in a calm and elegant space. Alternatively, our concierge house call service can provide you with IV vitamin therapy sessions from home or your private office.
We serve clients across the Los Angeles Area, in Beverly Hills, Bel Air, West Hollywood, Santa Monica, West Los Angeles, Culver City, Hollywood, Venice, Marina del Rey, Malibu, Manhattan Beach, Redondo Beach, Downtown Los Angeles, Encino, Woodland Hills, Sherman Oaks, Calabasas, Burbank, Glendale, Hidden Hills, Agoura Hills, Northridge, North Hollywood, Topanga, Canoga Park, Reseda, Valley Glen, Chatsworth, West Hills, Winnetka, Universal City, Silverlake, Echo Park, and many more.
Schedule an appointment online or call 855-999-5577 today!