Relaxing Herbs To Calm The HPA Axis

Corpse Pose-Relaxation

Corpse Pose-Relaxation

Recently I wrote on stress and depression. Since then I’ve gotten a few emails asking what kind of herbs are good for calming the hypothalamus.

HPA Axis
The hypothalamus is what tells the pituitary that there is a stressful situation. The pituitary tells the adrenal glands that help for dealing with stress is needed. The adrenal glands produce stress hormones that, among other things, tells the hypothalamus there is a stressful situation. The loop can continue even if the stressor is removed.

Herbs Are Individual
The best herbs for one person may not be the best for another. Fortunately, there are formulas that take a broad approach. This offers a synergistic affect that is often needed with herbs, and there is more variety so broad spectrum formulas are more likely to have something for most people.

Herb Quality
One of the biggest problems with herbs is quality. That is why I use MediHerb when I can because their standards are the highest. That’s not practical for most people though for several reasons. You can buy national brands as a good second choice, but be sure to get a formula that is made from powdered herbs, lose or in capsules. Look for formulas that are designed for helping cope with stress.

Nevaton is probably the best relaxing herb that MediHerb has. I have seen it work well for almost everyone who uses it. One tablet two or three times a day works for most people. Increase to four a day if needed.

Calming Herbs
Here is a list of some common nervine herbs, a western classification for herbs that help to calm.
immature oat seeds
passion flower
lemon balm
kava kava

A lot of people include St, Johns wort. That is fine if it has a good effect on you, but it is more for depression than anxiety or stress and may not help ease the issue the way other herbs do. Also, it’s best avoided if you are on most medications.

Valerian is also recommended by some herbalists. It is more of a tranquilizer, more for acute stress. Also, its effects tend to diminish if used too frequently.

Calming Herbal Formula Examples
Here are the ingredients of a formula that has helped a few people I know: chamomile, passion flower, fennel seeds, hops, freverfew and marshmallow

Another formula that has been helpful for a couple of people I know: passion flower, kava kava, Siberian ginseng, gotu kola, kola nut, schizandra, wood betony and lavender flower

Herbs are best taken on an empty stomach. However, many people find it more convenient to take supplements at meals.

If your dealing with adrenal fatigue, These herbs will help most people that are dealing with adrenal fatigue. Take them two or three times a day, more if you feel. Most are pretty benign, but be sure to head any warning labels, or find what the best dose for you. You are sure to notice the effect fairly soon.

Meet the Author

Hello and welcome to my blog! There are several reasons I decided to start writing a blog on natural self-healing. The main thing I want to do is to share information on health and healing so that people can take action to heal themselves using natural techniques. I have met so many people who couldn't afford natural health care. They may have had health insurance, but they didn't trust that model. Many people want to know how to be healthy naturally. They want to know what really works and what doesn't. They want to be health conscious and often fail because of poor information, lack of knowledge, bad science and other factors. This blog is intended to help demystify the body and its various functions and to help people understand what is really needed to obtain optimum health. One of the great things about knowledge of the body is that once you know and understand how it works it becomes easy to know what the right things to do for it. And, it is much easier to do the right things when the consequences of the wrong things are fully understood. To do this I will be drawing from the knowledge of many people that I have learned from. I will talk about biochemistry relating that to what is needed to obtain optimum health. There will be information about the physical structure of the body and how to keep that aligned and functioning well. A major part of yoga has to do with health, so information about yogic techniques will be included. Mental and emotional health are important for the health of the body/mind, so articles about these topics will be included. And, there will be an occasional article about me and what I am up to. Hopefully I can relate that back to some health issue as well. The title Self Adjusting Technique comes from my technique for self-adjusting the structural part of the body, that is adjusting the body's various vertebrae and joints. For this blog it will include the idea of how to adjust health issues for yourself and those you care about. With a little knowledge there is a lot people can do to help heal themselves and stay healthy. I want to explain complex information about the body in a way that is easy to understand and useful. The comments section will help in that goal as people can ask for clarification if there is something they don't understand. And maybe we can get some helpful input from people smarter than me that will benefit us all. I hope you find information that can help you with your health issues. Kalidasa

2 comments… add one
  • Garth Nov 5, 2010, 7:48 pm

    Yes I don’t know if these will work with general anxiety/panic, as myself and others (anxiety forums) tried something similar called Gaba (Stress Relax – Relief for Nervousness and Acute stress) and it actually had the opposite effect and increased our anxiety.

  • Kalidasa Nov 5, 2010, 10:32 pm

    GABA is completely different, it is a brain chemical. I have also seen GABA have the opposite effect, and I’ve seen it work literally overnight. Of course, the opposite tends to happen overnight as well. However, these herbs should help in most cases. The main cause of panic attacks is an imbalance in brain chemistry which can be caused by long term adrenal fatigue.

    Brain chemistry is balanced with supplements, detox, exercise etc. The main supplements are amino acids, but they often need other factors to work.

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