Anxiety and stress disorders can be treated through a number of different conventional and alternative modalities. Feeling anxious is an emotion that most people experience from time to time, however in someone suffering from an anxiety disorder, the feeling anxiousness is so overwhelming that it can interfere with their ability to lead a happy life.
There are several types of disorders relating to anxiety ranging from Panic Disorder, Social Anxiety Disorder, Specific Phobias, Generalised Anxiety Disorder and the list goes on. While the cause in many people is known, there are just as many people with unknown causes for their anxiety.
There are many different approaches to treating anxiety, such as counceling, relaxation therapy, dietary and lifestyle changes, acupuncture and many more. Many of those suffering from anxiety disorders resort to prescription medication. Recent research, however, has shown that there just may be an important vitamin missing from the diet of those who suffer from anxiety disorders.
Niacin or Vitamin B3 is one of the water soluble B-complex vitamins. It is essential for DNA repair, synthesis of steroidal hormones and energy metabolism. Niacin has the ability to relax muscle tissue composing arteries, increasing their diameter - a process called vasodilatation. This leads to increased blood flow and reduces blood pressure, and also raises HDL levels while reducing LDL levels to further improve cardiovascular health. In regards to anxiety, niacin acts as an antidote to adrenaline, which is over-produced in those suffering from anxiety.
Researchers believe that niacin may help to reduce anxiety and depression, while promoting better sleep patterns. According to Biochemical, Physiological and Molecular Aspects of Human Nutrition, its possible that niacin's ability ability to increase blood flow, reduce blood pressure, eliminate excess adrenaline and regulate hormones could contribute to feelings of relaxation, aiding in eliminating stress in those who suffer from anxiety disorders.
The recommended daily intake of niacin varies according to age and gender, so consult a health care professional before taking any supplements to ensure that it is right for you.
Best of Health
Acupuncturist & Naturopath