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Motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca), is an important herb for your natural anti-stress arsenal. Motherwort is part of the Lamiacea family in the mint family. You may hear it referred to by other common names like Lion’s ear and Lion’s tail. Motherwort’s Nervous System and Heart Benefits Motherwort is both a heart and nervous system tonic. Herbalists have long used motherwort to ease tension and encourage a happy heart. While it calms the nervous system, motherwort uplifts the heart if you’re feeling sad, angry, or frustrated. The German Commission E approves its use for...

These are the top three tools I like to use to reduce stress. These are things that can help you in the moment, as well as to help you build up resiliency to stress as time goes on.  I always make sure to have these with me. Aromatherapy The first tool I like to use to reduce stress, and reduce it quickly, is aromatherapy or essential oils. Many scientific studies have been done on its usage and how effective it can be for stress. One that I like to use is lavender. Many...

Considered one of the most potent nervines in the world, passionflower has earned an important place in Western herbalism. The name, passionflower, originates from the “passion of the Christ” because its flowers resemble a crown of thorns. One poet of the time wrote that passionflower was a witness at the crucifixion. The Greeks, Japanese, and Israelis all call it clock flower because its uniform flowers resemble the face of a clock. Passionflower is truly a beautiful herb to behold! Passionflower: Nervine Supreme The Aztecs of Mexico used passionflower for insomnia, nervousness,...

You’re stuck in traffic and you’re late for an important appointment. Your palms are sweating…your heart is racing… your muscles tighten… you may become angry or start to shake. You’re definitely feeling the effects of stress and it doesn’t feel good. Here’s what is happening to your body during high stress: Your sympathetic nervous system kicks into gear. This reaction starts in the brain, sparking a chain of events through the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) in the endocrine system. Your brain sends the message to the pituitary gland to produce ACTH (Adrenocorticotropic hormone). ACTH...

Also called Arctic Rose or goldenroot, rhodiola rosea is another key stress management herb. It grows in the arctic wilderness areas of Europe and Asia, and is widely used in the traditional herbal systems of China, Russia, and Sweden. It’s a classic herbal adaptogen, used to increase endurance, and resist all types of stress. Today, rhodiola is on the healing radar in the West for its role in enhancing health. Rhodiola flourishes in a cold, harsh climate and it carries this benefit energetically through to people who use it. People who use...

Lemon balm, or Melissa officinalis, has been used therapeutically since ancient Greek times. The Greeks hung it on the front door to ward off evil spirits. They used the crushed leaves for scorpion stings and dog bites. They drank wine mixed with lemon balm to reduce fevers. It became especially popular for melancholy, and also to strengthen memory. Today, lemon balm is widely used in herbal therapy everywhere. It’s important in crops for cosmetics and household cleaners, and is grown to attract bees (good news for beekeepers). A member of...

Holy basil has been grown and used in India for over 3,000 years. It’s often referred to as Tulsi, or the Incomparable One, and is considered one of the most sacred plants in all of India. Many Hindus believe holy basil carries the essence of Vishnu and his wife Lakshmi, and worship the plant as a god. The ancient Padmapurana text says,“Every house, every village, every forest, where Tulsi grows, there misery, fear, disease, and poverty do not exist.” Here in the West, we are just tapping into its role in...

Being a parent isn’t easy. Whether you have one child or many, an infant, school-aged child, or a moody teenager, life can be stressful. There are simply never enough hours in the day. Someone always needs your attention—for homework help, for rides to ball games and dance lessons, for feeding and clothing, or for bedtime stories and goodnight kisses. It’s a tough job and although you probably wouldn’t trade it for anything, the constant balancing act between children, work, and your own needs can take its toll. Parenting is both...

Often called Indian Ginseng or Winter Cherry, Ashwagandha is one of my favorite herbal tonics for stress. Ashwagandha grows in India, Pakistan, Spain, and parts of the Middle East and Africa. It’s used extensively as a libido enhancer and rejuvenative herb in Ayurveda, the oldest system of healing in the world. Here in the West, Ashwagandha has gained popularity as an adaptogen, with an important role in formulas to de-stress and revitalize your body. Evidence Points To Ashwagandha to Relieve Stress and Burnout Like other adaptogens, one of Ashwagandha’s main roles is...

I think it is safe to say that one of the top reasons people experience stress is due to money or lack thereof. Since working in the stress field and in the natural health field since 2000, one of the underlying causes for health issues, quality of life issues, and overall life satisfaction is always in direct correlation to stress levels, with finances being one of the main stressors. It’s understandable. We need money to take care of all of our basic needs: food, shelter, warmth, health, and in some...

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