Anxiety is on the rise with the stresses of contemporary life and fragmentation of society based on increasing social distance, rising expectations around productivity, and device-based culture focused on electronic communication. Anxiety is a social-behavioral issue and psychological issue, but it is also a biologic function of how our bodies react to stress. Our energy levels and nervous system functioning are regulated by important vitamins and minerals that we obtain through our diet and other sources. However, many people are vitamin deficient in critical areas due to skewed diets (e.g., keto, paleo, vegetarian, etc.), nutrient depleted soil, and overprocessed foods. Just as anxiety is starting to rise, we lack the critical vitamins to better cope with these stressors on the body.
Will my daily vitamin safeguard against anxiety? It is likely that you are taking an over-the-counter multivitamin, or some do-it-yourself vitamin cocktail as a daily routine. In the case of a standard multivitamin, it is likely to fall short on the critical nutrients that you need. These vitamins are dosed for the average diet of a healthy individual and recommended daily allowance (RDA) levels of nutrition. The dosing of a standard multivitamin is typically far below RDA levels, and almost never aligned to the leading scientific evidence of when a nutrient will impact your deficiencies. If you are cobbling together a “DIY” vitamin cocktail, there is a good chance that you are selecting vitamins that might not have a direct impact on anxiety issues, or taking a combination of vitamins that does not promote optimal absorption. Many vitamins work in tandem to assist with the absorption process. You might also be selecting herbal supplements with limited scientific evidence; thereby, assuming you are getting an improvement in your anxiety levels, when in fact, it may be simply a placebo effect.
Personalized Vitamins As A Pathway To Better Anxiety Control
Personalized vitamins are calibrated to individual needs. Typically, you start the process by completing a digital assessment around your health and lifestyle with questions around diet, fitness, medications, and so forth. These data points are used to construct your optimal daily vitamin routine. Nearly all personalized vitamin assessments have some degree of question around mental state, including anxiety levels. The benefit of a personalized vitamin is that the product will be properly composed and dosed to meet your individualized needs.
There are a couple of models around personalized vitamins. One model will prescribe a daily packet of several pills of all shapes and sizes. These services are curating standard supplements, and packaging them in a way that makes it easy to take them together on a daily basis. The downside of these models is that they can prescribe 10 or more pills and powders, and charge upwards of $100 or more per month. Many people will struggle to find consistency and compliance in a pill pack model.
Another model is a customized all-in-one multivitamin. These personalized vitamin companies actually build unique products with different ingredient and dosing profiles. The pills are often designed to be easy-to-swallow with integrated formulas that promote absorption. A limitation of these models is that they are not able to offer the same degree of pill selection, and as an example, you might not be able to find the herbal supplement that you have been taking as part of your routine. You are sacrificing some range of supplement options to get an affordable and sustainable all-in-one solution.
Linkages Between Vitamins And Anxiety
There are a variety of vitamins that offer potential benefits for anxiety issues. These are good vitamins to consider:
UnBElievable Bs are a class of B vitamins that also play a central role in the natural treatment of anxiety. They are most important in aiding nerves to function properly and this can mean relaxing nerves that are overly keyed up. Sounds like just what you need?
Marvelous Magnesium is also near the top of our list of anxiety supplements that may help. This important mineral plays many essential roles in the body, mostly helping nerves and muscles to function optimally. We can’t underplay the sheer helpfulness of this supplement for stress and anxiety. T
Vitamin D has not been proven as a vitamin to take for stress or anxiety to date; however, we would like to suggest that it may have some benefit. Science has shown that Vitamin D deficiency is linked with low levels of serotonin. Serotonin is one of the main chemicals in your brain where low levels is known to cause depression and anxiety. Hence, we think it is fair to suggest that taking a safe amount of vitamin D is a good idea for those looking for a supplement for anxiety. And it is a good idea for most of us to take some vitamin D for many reasons, including its important role in immunity.
It turns out there are many simple things you can do beyond taking vitamins for anxiety and stress. The old-fashioned lifestyle suggestions, such as regular exercise and good sleep are still very much advised. In addition to those lifestyle basics, it is also worth spending some time to learn the practice of mindfulness. There are tons of books, Youtube videos, and even phone apps available. These are great tools to add to your armamentarium.
Do NOT take unproven herbs and supplements for anxiety. There are many things out there being advertised as vitamins for anxiety. In particular, you should beware of herbal supplements. Rhodiola, Valerian and the like are hard to obtain in pure and safe forms. These are the types of products that can be laden with unlisted ingredients and contain little of what is listed on the bottle.
Do NOT take any product that is a “glandular” product or suggests it is made to help enhance your adrenal or thyroid glands. Many or most of these supplements for adrenal fatigue or thyroid boost a re full of ground up animal glands (quite unpleasant!) and are both unsafe and potentially harmful. The only vitamin for thyroid support that we endorse is iodine and that must be in safe amounts (which are often lower than those put into these products.
Do NOT take big vitamin packs. These are often contain more products than you really want or need to take (8 pills daily?..who can sustain that routine?). Most people do not stick to these complicated regimens as they develop side effects from some of the pack components. Frankly, they get sick of the whole thing and there are often unnecessary or unsafe amounts of vitamins.
Finally, it is wise to involve your doctor in this conversation and get their feedback on your vitamin chocies.
Personalized Vitamins As A Key Strategy
Now that you understand the linkages between vitamins and anxiety, you can recognize the role for personalization. Personalization ensures that you are getting the right blend of vitamins for your anxiety and dosed in proper amounts. Personalization does not have to be cumbersome and expensive as you can seek out a targeted all-in-one multivitamin designed for your needs at a reasonable cost. While there are many commercials and advertisements out there around personalized pill packs, this is not the exclusive offering in the market, and you should not feel compelled to settle for a package of standard supplements. Search for high quality and high trust companies offering products that are crafted for you needs. Vitamins are one component of an overall approach to anxiety management.