The stress of modern life can take a toll on the body. It isn’t healthy to live in a constant state of panic or fear, yet many people feel this way. How do you come up for air and take that much needed deep breath? There are many breathing techniques, exercises, self-care tips, and mindfulness practices that people use to help reduce anxiety, but certain teas may have the same effect.
Could reducing anxiety be as simple as brewing a cup of affordable tea and sipping it on the couch? Since ancient times, various civilizations have used herbal teas to boost overall health and reduce stress and anxiety. To this day, certain teas may help lower stress hormones and improve sleep. It’s all about finding the tea that works best for you, as each person may have a different response to the teas in this article.
Some teas have the power to calm the mind and body, which is beneficial for people who live with anxiety. Other teas tend to be better for overall health or specific health conditions. Some of the primary benefits of drinking different teas, especially herbal teas, include:
- Soothing upset stomach
- Improving sleep
- Aiding with blood pressure reduction
- Reducing severity of menstrual cramps
- Relieving nausea
If you want to help naturally reduce stress and anxiety, consider experimenting with the following teas.
Lemon Balm Tea
Since the 16th century, people have used lemon balm for its mild sedative effects. Even the word “balm” means “soothing” or “restorative.” Lemon balm belongs to the same family as mint, and it is quite common in European, Mediterranean, and certain Asian countries. A December 2021 review found that drinking lemon balm tea helped lower rates of depression and anxiety symptoms. Additional preliminary research supports the fact that lemon balm may be able to reduce nervousness and abdominal pain, two common symptoms of anxiety.
According to a 2020 study, lavender tea was able to reduce scores of anxiety and depression in older adults. It has the ability to calm the mind and body without a sedative effect. Even though there are more than 40 species of lavender, English and French varieties typically end up in teas. A steaming cup of lavender tea may help induce a calming effect, which may contribute to more restful sleep. For this reason, many sleep experts recommend that people with anxiety and insomnia drink lavender tea.
It may seem odd to include a tea that contains caffeine on a list of teas that help reduce anxiety. Research suggests that green tea helps to calm the mind, protect the cardiovascular system, energize the central nervous system, and slow the aging process. The compound L-theanine, which is prominent in green tea, exhibits anti-anxiety effects. L-theanine may also increase levels of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that’s associated with pleasure. Perhaps this explains the reason why it makes people feel alert, but also stress-free.
Ashwagandha Root Tea
If you need a tea to help reduce stress and anxiety, ashwagandha root tea may become a staple in your tea rotation. It has a long history of use in traditional Ayurvedic medicine, primarily because it’s an adaptogenic herb. Adaptogens are certain herbs or substances that help stabilize physiological processes. Several studies found that ashwagandha may effectively reduce stress, anxiety, and sleep issues. In fact, it’s one of the leading herbs for improving sleep quality. Additionally, one study found that taking ashwagandha root extract for 8 weeks helped reduce stress and anxiety levels. Ashwagandha may be able to lower cortisol, the stress hormone, by 25%. Click here to learn more about this impressive herb.
Many people enjoy peppermint tea because of the minty taste and relaxation properties. People commonly consume peppermint tea to help soothe upset stomach and sore throat as well. Peppermint tea contains menthol, a compound in the mint plant that is a natural muscle relaxant and calming agent. You can brew fresh mint leaves in hot water or steep a bag of peppermint tea in hot water; both will yield the same benefits. Lastly, one study found that inhaling peppermint aroma effectively reduced pain and anxiety.