How Can Botanical Medicine Help Mental Health Issues?
Wednesday Mar 25, 2020
Botanical medicine has been the medicine of the people for centuries because of the anti-inflammatory and neurohormone balancing effects. The inflammation blocks detoxification pathways and increases pain in the body. Neuroinflammation is prevalent in mental health issues such as anxiety, ADH, dementia, schizophrenia, depression, bipolar, and PTSD. Chronic neuroinflammation presents in many cases with neurotransmitters imbalances. Neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, GABA, and acetylcholine modulate behavior, sleep, gut health, energy, motivation, mood, and appetite. Balancing neurotransmitters is essential in mental health.
Certain plants are believed to provide support in the neurotransmitters pathway and modulate their responses. For example, mistletoe and nettle support neurotransmitter acetylcholine and can be helpful in dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. GABA neurotransmitters can be supported by plants like St. John’s wort, valerian, pokeroot, passionflower, and shiitake extract. These plants play multiple roles in the body with the potential of boosting the neurotransmitters and hormones at the same time. Vitex works by promoting the dopaminergic transmission by affecting the pituitary gland, dopamine, and progesterone.
Plants like Griffonia simplicifolia, passionflower and nettle were found to be of support for the precursors to serotonin and reducing inflammation. St. John’s wort plant is well known to act like an SSRI (anti-depressant). Lemon balm is anxiolytic, anti-inflammatory and antiviral, providing relief from insomnia, anxiety, and herpetic outbreaks. A good daily supply of extracts from macuna, Centella, vitex, and periwinkle can boost memory, mood, acuity, concentration, and motivation. Botanical medicine in combination with amino acid therapy can work synergistically in supporting the neurotransmitters pathways.