Updated: Nov 14, 2021
What ailment could a toddler, a high schooler, a new parent, a baby boomer, and
Spot the dog, experience alike? Anxiety is one of the most pervasive complaints
in our society, and at this unique time, it is top of mind. As a naturopathic doctor,
I offer natural long lasting treatment options, while digging deeply for the root
cause of these feelings.
The oxford dictionary defines anxiety as a feeling of worry, nervousness, or
unease about something with an uncertain outcome. It is a natural response, but
when it begins to interfere with daily activities like eating, sleeping, or working, it
is calling our attention.
Types of Anxiety
Anxiety comes in many different shapes and sizes. It can look like obsessive-
compulsive behaviors, phobias, posttraumatic stress, panic, avoidance of specific
activities and / gatherings, insomnia, and more. It is estimated that at least one
in ten Canadians suffer from anxiety, and the numbers are climbing now faster
than we can study. The first step is to acknowledge it.
In my practice, when patients present with anxiety, a number of physical issues
are assessed. Top investigations include:
o thyroid function
o blood sugar regulation
o food sensitivities
o nutrient deficiencies (including iron)
o drug reactions (including caffeine)
o cardiac function
o respiratory health (i.e. asthma)
A comprehensive work up also includes testing stress hormone levels (i.e.
cortisol), and urinary neurotransmitters (i.e. serotonin, GABA, and
norepinephrine). In addition, a family history is taken and an inquiry into a
Commonly, a patients’ anxiety boils down to an intricate web of physical
imbalances, lifestyle habits, and genetic coding. A unique treatment approach is
tailored to each case.
Diet is always addressed including meal frequency, and consumption of
stimulants. Optimizing a patients’ sleep, establishing a work-life balance, and
incorporating regular movement are paramount to any anxiety busting protocol.
Cardio exercise is crucial, as well as deep relaxation from yoga, breath work,
There are several herbal remedies that work to balance anxiety symptoms.
Nervines like passionflower and chamomile and adaptogens like withania and
rhodiola are excellent choices. Supplements like L-theanine (from green tea)
and 5-HTP can also help balance neurotransmitters.
Finally bodywork is extremely effective to calm and relax an overactive nervous
system. Acupuncture and craniosacral therapy are invaluable tools in
addressing anxiety and patients can experience the benefit immediately.
Give us a call today to discuss how anxiety impacts your life, and lets get you
started on a plan to get you coping better and feeling great!
Dr. Stephanie Peltz has been practicing naturopathic medicine since 2008. Her area of expertise is in women's and childhood health including preconception care, fertility concerns, pregnancy, and postpartum care. You can find her at Dupont Naturopathic Family Centre on Tuesdays, Thursdays and every other Saturday. Click here to make an appointment