Disarm Yourself: Reduce NorepinephrineJul 04, 2020
by Henry Emmons, MD
[adapted from The Chemistry of Calm]
p.s., If you haven't read Part 1 of this series, head there first.
Disarm Yourself: Reduce Norepinephrine
With depression, there's often too little NE, but in anxiety it's frequently elevated and needs to be toned down. Norepinephrine (NE) raises your level of alertness and arousal. It puts the amygdala on high alert to set off all the alarms in case danger arises.
That alarm system is good if you’re doing something like hunting or evading capture, but not helpful if you're speaking in front of a group or if you've developed panic anxiety for any reason.
How do you know if NE is excessive?
Norepinephrine is the brain’s version of epinephrine, which also goes by the name “adrenaline.” You've probably had the experience of “running on adrenaline.” It's similar to the feeling of drinking too much caffeine, which also elevates norepinephrine’s effects.
Physical Experiences: May be a rapid heart rate, shallow and rapid breathing, elevated blood pressure, cold extremities, and muscle tension and shakiness.
Emotional Experiences: You may feel panicky as if something awful is about to happen.
Mental Experiences: Your mind may go blank as you find that you can’t think clearly or remember things, no matter how hard you try.
Supplements to Balance Norepinephrine
*Note: Some of the supplements discussed in this article can cause side effects, but many people tolerate them much better than prescription medications. They are generally considered safe, however, they should not be started without your doctor’s knowledge and supervision. If you are taking medication already, be sure to talk with your doctor before adding any of these items. If you are considering going off medication, remember never to stop your medication suddenly—always consult with your doctor about how to safely taper off any psychiatric medication. See terms (link terms).
**These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
L-theanine supplements for anxiousness
Researchers have found that l-theanine changes brainwaves as measured on EEG, promoting the relaxed and alert state associated with alpha-brain waves. That makes it unusual because it can sharpen mental focus and calm anxiety at the same time. Read more.
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