Ever heard of neurotrophin-3? We hadn’t either up until a couple of weeks ago. But, if you regularly battle with bouts of anxiety then it’s a molecule worth learning about. According to a new study neurotrophin-3, or a lack of it, plays a key role in how and if we respond to outside threats.
Neurotrophin-3 is a growth factor that helps boost the production of new nerve cells and their connections. Researchers at the University of California and the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that when levels of neurotrophin-3 were high in the brain, anxiety was reduced. “There are millions of people worldwide who suffer from debilitating anxiety and depressive disorders,” says Andrew Fox, an assistant professor in the UC Davis Department of Psychology and study researcher. “These disorders are also some of the leading causes of disability and days lost to disability.”
It’s likely that in the coming months and years there will be an increase in supplements promising to help top up the neurotrophin-3 in your brain, but in the meantime there are several supplements you can take to help relieve anxiety.
What are the best supplements for anxiety?
The soothing effects of a cup of Horlicks isn’t just a marketing stunt, there is some science to the idea that milk can help to ease our nerves and as a result in a better night’s sleep. It is the vitamin D within milk that is thought to help increase your serotonin levels. For those who don’t like the idea of drinking a glass of milk before bed, it is worth looking into Bioactive Milk Peptides by Life Extension. Using bioactive peptides found naturally in milk, these supplements can help you to unwind and relax, and they can be used during the day without causing drowsiness.
Those who regularly suffer with anxiety, or with long bouts of it, should look at Florassist Mood by Life Extension, which is a probiotic blend that has been formulated to help boost your mood and tackle stress and anxiety. Plenty of studies have highlighted the link between our gut and our nervous system. In 2017 research by the University of Virginia Health System discovered that lactobacillus in yoghurt can help improve our mood, while a study published in General Psychiatry earlier this year concluded that rebalancing your gut using probiotic foods and supplements can help reduce anxiety. While Florassist Mood is the perfect mood-boosting probiotic supplement, incorporating fermented foods such as kefir, sauerkraut and kimchi can also help the bacteria in your gut to flourish and enhance your mood.
How else can you ease anxiety?
It’s not just about what you eat. A recent survey by the Tea Advisory Panel (TAP) found that three in five Brits find solace in a cup of tea when they’re having a stressful day. Whether it’s a cup of builders tea or a pot of Pukka Herbs Relax Tea, Brits believe there is some truth in the saying ‘a cup of tea is the answer to every problem’. While we’re on the subject though, it’s worth noting that a small study found 3g of Matcha green tea can help decrease stress and anxiety.
For those who want to avoid spending any money whatsoever should embrace the ‘nature pill’. Research has shown that those who live near green spaces or regularly spend time around nature are generally less stressed. In April this year, Frontiers published a study highlighting that spending just 20 minutes in a place that you can connect with nature helps to reduce stress levels.
While there is still a lot of research to be done around anxiety, the breakthrough around neurotrophin-3 allows scientists to hone in on particular molecules that could have the potential to revolutionise how we approach mental health. “It’s one of potentially many molecules that could have this affect. There could be hundreds or even thousands more,” says Fox.