Chances are if you have anxiety, you’re on some kind of supplement or medication.
If they’re helping you, amazing!
If they’re not, then maybe it’s time to switch things up or dig a little bit deeper to figure out why they’re not working.
There’s a few things I want to let you in on today, specifically main reasons people find supplements or medication doesn’t work for them.
The thing with supplements (vitamins & minerals) is that your body needs certain compounds to actually absorb them.
SO, if you don’t have these compounds, or don’t have enough of them, you’re probably not absorbing what you think you are.
My clients usually come to me after they have tried all.the.things. and nothing is working.
And tried all the things they have… their intake forms often are accompanied by a long list of supplements and/or medications that someone (*ahem* google) told them was going to help their anxiety.
Here are the three I see most often:
- Vitamin B12
Supplements, just like medication, should not be taken as the “cure all magic pill”. Both are *supplementary* to diet and lifestyle changes.
Here’s why 👇
If you’re looking for vitamins to help combat your anxiety, the B vitamins are what you need.
You can easily do a quick google search and find tons of articles about how beneficial the B’s are for mental health.
The ones most studied are B9 and B12.
B9 (aka folate) together with B12 are needed to boost mood and combat anxiety and depression. A 2017 study found that people deficient in B12 were more likely to experience depression and anxiety.
Why are those two such an anti-anxiety powerhouse?
Because of their role in cognitive health—supporting proper brain and nerve function.
But in order to absorb these vitamins, specifically B12, you need something called intrinsic factor… IF for short.
IF is a protein produced by very specific cells that line the stomach wall.
Here’s the twist… if you don’t have enough stomach acid (which is one of the most common digestive imbalances I see in my clients), then you aren’t producing IF.
And if you’re not making that IF, you may as well throw the money you spent on your B12 supplements right out the window. You also won't be absorbing any B12 you get from real food either.
Becauuusee, and I’m going to get a little nerdy here... the intrinsic factor attaches to B12 and forms a complex. This complex is what carries B12 to the small intestine. The complex (B12 + IF) bind to the mucosa of the ileum (a portion of the small intestine) allowing vitamin B12 to be absorbed into the bloodstream.
Without this complex, B12 cannot be absorbed into the bloodstream.
Want to decrease anxiety? Get your stomach acid in check so you can absorb all that anti-anxiety B12 from both your food and supplementation.
If you've ever been so ridonkulously sore from a workout, you may have heard of the magical muscle tranquilizing powers of magnesium.
Or you may know that magnesium is known as the "anti-stress" mineral.
And tbh if there’s ONE nutrient you probably can’t live without, it’s magnesium. In fact, right before I sat down to edit this blog, I popped some magnesium.
Why? Because it’s needed as a co-factor in more than 300 biochemical reactions needed to maintain balance and order in the body. That's kind of a big deal.
Annddd, it plays a key role in the activity of psychoneuroendocrine systems…
I geek out HARD over psychoneuroendocrinology. It’s a field of study that examines the interactions between the nervous system, your hormones and your behaviour. AKA everything I teach in my programs.
Magnesium plays a role in all of the above (nervous system, hormones & behaviour). Making it an awesome mineral for anxiety because it helps to nix that stress response.
If you’re taking mag supplements already, kudos to you first off, but then why do you still have anxiety?
Magnesium may help to nix that stress response but it will not make up for poor
diet & lifestyle choices.
Skipping meals, eating high amounts of sugar or gluten, not sleeping, engaging in toxic relationships, working over 8 hours a day (I'm terrible for this even now), not taking time to rest and relax ... these are lifestyle choices that no amount of magnesium - or medication - can overcome.
This is exactly what I did and what my clients are doing before I get my hands on them.
I spent so much $$$ on supplements and medication without making the necessary diet + lifestyle changes 🤦♀️
Take it from someone who tried 4EVER to supplement her way out of lifestyle changes.... it does.not.work.
If your anxiety was anything like mine, you've been on meds.
Back then, when I was mid anxiety attack I definitely wasn’t poppin’ magnesium or B12.
No thanks, gimme the hard stuff.
But what about those scripts you take daily?
Prozac? Lexapro? Zoloft? Celexa? Paxil?
What exactly are they doing?
The goal of anti-anxiety meds is to keep certain neurotransmitters— serotonin in the case of SSRIs —in the brain longer, helping to elevate your mood.
But the problem is they’re not actually creating MORE neurotransmitters… they’re just hanging onto the ones you have for dear life.
Which makes you dependent on them. And the second those meds wear off, you feel like crap again.
If coming off medication is your goal (and it doesn’t have to be) … you gotta start giving your body the building blocks she needs to create MORE neurotransmitters. This will help massively with those annoying AF withdrawal symptoms when (and if) you are ready to come off.
PS. you do this through diet 😊 (and maybe a little bit of supplementation in the beginning)
Supplements can be extremely useful when they are working to correct a specific imbalance but they do not replace a diet filled with high protein, healthy fats, tons of fibre, vitamins & minerals from REAL FOOD. And they do not replace stress management techniques.
So what *exactly* should you be doing if those supps and scripts haven’t been enough to tackle your stubborn anxiety?
I'm glad you asked!
I’ve put together a free 4-day protocol to guide you through the four pillars of natural anxiety management. Master these four pillars and you’ll be one step closer to that sweet, sweet #anxietyfreedom 👊
Click HERE to join the protocol 💜 See you on the inside!