The three herbs you need for stress and anxiety

Common hops
Common hop is an ingredient in most beers

By Caroline Tran, KOL Editor for NutriSmart

Many herbal plants have been used for centuries in traditional medicine to alleviate common health conditions. While symptoms of stress and anxiety were common with our ancestors, it has skyrocketed into much higher levels in today’s society.

Below is the combination of three natural herbs you can use to manage symptoms of stress and anxiety.


Valeriana Officinalis in the wild.


Valeriana Officinalis Root (Valerian)

Valerian root is a plant native to Europe and parts of Asia and North America. It is a staple in sleep supplements due to its sedative effects for treating stress, anxiety and sleep disorders.

Valerian is believed to increase GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) production in the brain. GABA is an amino acid naturally occurring in the brain with its primary function to calm neuron activity in the brain and central nervous system, which helps decrease stress and anxiety.

Studies have found that valerian can provide neuroprotective effects to aid with stress and anxiety by controlling fluctuations in the hippocampus. In one placebo-controlled trial, subjects received valerian extract and were measured on their physical and mental stress levels. The results showed that the group receiving valerian root extract had significantly lower cortisol (a chemical released during stress) levels than the placebo groups.


Humulus Lupulus Flower (Common hop)

Common hop is a flowering plant native to Europe, southwestern Asia and North America, with a long history for its use in relieving symptoms of stress, anxiety and poor sleep.

Common hop is believed to exert antidepressant effects, which works as a reaction to aid with sleep quality and decrease stress levels. Like valerian, it can also enhance GABA production.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled study of healthy young adults with self-reported symptoms of stress and anxiety found that after four weeks of common hop extract supplementation, it significantly improved all marker symptoms of stress and restlessness.