Anxiety is a natural, normal response to perceived threats, which puts your body into a heightened state of awareness.
At times anxiety is beneficial and can keep you out of harm's way… the anxiety you may feel while you perceive a danger like heights or fire for instance, will cause you to be more careful in your movements.
For many people however, anxiety may occur even when there's no real threat, causing unnecessary stress and emotional pain. While many believe anxiety and stress to be the same, constant anxiety sets up a different experience in your brain.
What Happens When You feel Anxious?
Anxiety causes the same "fight or flight" response that stress does, which means, like stress anxiety will trigger a flood of stress hormones like cortisol. This innate mechanism is designed to protect you from harm so that when there is danger you can escape...your reflexes, heart rate, and circulation are stimulated to escape from the danger.
Feelings of stress can occur with feelings of anger, sadness or even happiness and excitement. Anxiety, on the other hand, virtually always involves a sense of fear, dread, or apprehension, and while stress may occur due to an external source (like an argument with your spouse), anxiety tends to be a more internal response.
Brief anxiety may coincide with a stressful event (such as speaking in public), but an anxiety disorder will persist for months even when there's no clear reason to be anxious.
The National Institute of Mental Health explains:
"Several parts of the brain are key actors in the production of fear and anxiety… scientists have discovered that the amygdala and the hippocampus play significant roles in most anxiety disorders.
The amygdala is an almond-shaped structure deep in the brain that is believed to be a communications hub between the parts of the brain that process incoming sensory signals and the parts that interpret these signals. It can alert the rest of the brain that a threat is present and trigger a fear or anxiety response.
The emotional memories stored in the central part of the amygdala may play a role in anxiety disorders involving very distinct fears, such as fears of dogs, spiders, or flying. The hippocampus is the part of the brain that encodes threatening events into memories."
Your Brain May Become Wired for Anxiety
It's thought that anxiety disorders may result from a combination of nature (your genetics) and nurture (your environment). For instance, if you grow up in an environment where you are constantly threatened (emotionally or physically) your brain learns to function in a stress response all the time. It becomes wired that way and is always on alert for danger. What this means is that you live in a constantly elevated state of stress and feel anxious. The response becomes habitual, like a mouse running on a treadmill that can’t get off.
Consequently your brain becomes "wired" for anxiety, such that any potentially undesirable event or emotion becomes cause for alarm.
Worse yet, some people are so used to feelings of anxiety that they don't realize there's a problem and simply suffer in silence. As anxious feelings intensify, it can lead to social isolation, physical symptoms, and related mental health problems, like depression.
Despite this, it's estimated that only one-third of people with anxiety disorders receive treatment, which is highly recommended if you're struggling with anxiety - but keep in mind "treatment" doesn't necessarily mean drugs.
Unfortunately, most people who suffer with anxiety either do nothing or resort to pharmaceutical drugs – many of which are ineffective and capable of destroying your health and sanity further. Commonly prescribed drugs include benzodiazepine drugs like Ativan, Xanax, and Valium.
They exert a calming effect by boosting the action of a neurotransmitter called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the same way as opioids (heroin) and cannabinoids (cannabis) do. This in turn activates the gratification hormone, dopamine, in your brain.
Since the identical brain "reward pathways" are used by both types of drugs, they can be equally addictive and also may cause side effects like memory loss, impaired thinking, and dizziness.
Ironically, the symptoms of withdrawal from many of these anxiety medications include extreme states of anxiety – some of which are far worse than the original symptoms that justified treatment in the first place.
Neuro Training Helps Rewire Your Brain
Neuro Training and Kinesiology can be very effective for helping you to actually retrain your Nervous System and your body's reactions to the unavoidable stressors of everyday life.
This includes both real and imagined stressors, which can be significant sources of anxiety. Neuro-Training is the result of an integration process spanning over 35 years of research. Its focus is on Recuperation from the events in life that have 'trained' us to 'be' the person we are now. The use and implementation of the principles of Recuperation, the development of innate competence and the challenge of developing congruence is what Neuro Training is moving toward.
Neuro-Training does NOT use computers as a feedback device. Neuro-Training does not use any gadgets or addition devices to help the client get the changes they need. Neuro-Training does use the innate responses of the nervous system to monitor changes in the subconscious and the body circuits.
The universal laws of recuperation, their principles and practice are woven into Neuro-Training. Throughout the evolution of what has become Neuro-Training today, there has always been a focus on training people to use their strengths and their resources to move beyond their current limiting metaphor in life.
Neuro Training can be done by yourself or in a private consultation, or via online video services, like Skype or Face Time. By doing so, you help retrain your nervous system to recuperate from its old habits, mental, emotional and physical. We regularly hold Neuro Training One Day To Wellness Seminars so check the website for details. www.renewyou.com.au
Since these stressors and old habits present as your symptoms, many diseases and other symptoms improve or disappear with Neuro Training Sessions. By combining Neuro Training with Kinesiology your specific nutritional, homeopathic and or herbal supports can be individually identified to further support your recuperation to better health and happiness
The Major Contributor to Anxiety That Hardly Anyone Knows
Increasingly, scientific evidence shows that nourishing your gut flora with the friendly bacteria known as probiotics is extremely important for proper brain function, and that includes psychological well-being and mood control. It may sound odd that bacteria in your gut could impact emotions such as anxiety, but that is exactly what the research bears testimony to. The probiotic known as Bifidobacterium lactis, for instance, has been shown to normalize anxiety-like behaviour in mice with infectious colitis.
In a very real sense, you have two brains, one inside your skull and one in your gut (the so-called "enteric nervous system"), and each needs its own vital nourishment. Your gut and brain actually work in tandem, each influencing the other. This is why your intestinal health can have such a profound influence on your mental health, and vice versa; as well as the reason why your diet is so closely linked to your mental health. A Kinesiology Neuro-Training session can create more balance between these brains for better integration and so function.
Prior research has also shown that the probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus had a marked effect on GABA (an inhibitory neurotransmitter that is significantly involved in regulating many physiological and psychological processes. The probiotic affected the GABA levels in certain brain regions and lowered the stress-induced hormone corticosterone, resulting in reduced anxiety- and depression-related behaviour.
So optimizing your gut flora with beneficial bacteria is a highly useful strategy. This is done by eliminating sugars and processed foods and eating plenty of non-starchy vegetables, avoiding processed vegetable oils, and using healthful fats. Additionally, using plenty of fermented vegetables or a high-potency probiotic would be useful to re-establish a healthy gut flora.
Your Diet Plays an Important Role in Your Mental Health
If you suffer from anxiety, it would be wise to look into nourishing your gut flora, and the best way to do this is to regularly consume traditionally fermented foods, which are naturally rich in beneficial bacteria. Pasteurized versions will NOT have the same benefits, as the pasteurization process destroys many, if not all of the naturally-occurring probiotics. So you will need to seek out traditionally fermented, unpasteurized foods like fermented vegetables, or make them yourself.
If you do not eat these types of foods regularly, then a high-quality probiotic supplement can help fill in the gap and give your gut the healthy bacteria it needs. This is the first part of the equation. The second part of the equation to optimizing your gut flora lies in avoiding the many factors that can throw your bacteria equilibrium way off balance, such as eating sugar, refined grains and other processed foods or taking antibiotics.
Additionally, your diet should include a high-quality source of animal-based omega-3 fats, like krill oil. The omega-3 fats EPA and DHA play an important role in your emotional well-being, and research has shown a dramatic 20 percent reduction in anxiety among med students taking omega-3.
Exercise Is Frequently Helpful if You Have Anxiety
Some psychologists swear by exercise as a primary form of treatment for depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders. Research has shown again and again that patients who follow regular exercise regimens see improvement in their mood -- improvements comparable to that of those treated with medication.
The results really are impressive when you consider that exercise is virtually free and can provide you with numerous other health benefits, too. The benefits to your mood occur whether the exercise is voluntary or forced, so even if you feel you have to exercise, say for health reasons, there's a good chance you'll still benefit.
In addition to the creation of new neurons, including those that release the calming neurotransmitter GABA, exercise boosts levels of potent brain chemicals like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, which may help buffer some of the effects of stress. Many avid exercisers also feel a sense of euphoria after a workout, sometimes known as the "runner's high." It can be quite addictive, in a good way, once you experience just how good it feels to get your heart rate up and your body moving.
If you struggle with anxiety, you really can't go wrong with starting a comprehensive exercise program – virtually any physical activity is likely to have positive effects, especially if it's challenging enough.
Researchers recently published a review of more than 100 studies that found yoga appears to be particularly beneficial for mental health, although I also recommend high-intensity interval training and resistance training as well, in addition to flexibility and core-building exercises like Pilates and yoga.
At Renewyou Happiness Centre we help retrain your Nervous System to come out of its habitual stress response. We help your nervous system learn to function without the automatic stress response that drives your stress response and anxiety. Kinesiology and Neuro-Training programs generate new options for your Nervous system, your brain and your glandular systems to recuperate and function better.
Help is just a phone call away...so take the first steps to getting your health back on track by having a Kinesiology/Neuro-Training session.
For more information on recuperation from your anxiety and stress contact Lyndy at Renew You Happiness Centre 0421 607 948...And be a happier, healthier you.