Alternative medicine

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Certain supplements may help relieve anxiety, although it isn't clear about how much they help or what possible side effects they might have. Some supplements used to treat anxiety include:

  • Kava. This herb is reported to relax you without making you feel sedated. Some studies have linked kava to liver problems, so it isn't a good idea to take it if you have a liver condition, drink alcohol daily or take medications that affect your liver.
  • Valerian. Most commonly used as a sleep aid, valerian has a sedative effect and may also relieve anxiety.
  • Vitamin B and folic acid. These nutrients may relieve anxiety by affecting the production of chemicals needed for your brain to function (neurotransmitters).

Talk to your doctor before taking herbal remedies or supplements to make sure they're safe for you and won't interact with any medications you take.

Aug. 23, 2011