Book Review | Herbs for Stress and Anxiety: How to Make Herbal Remedies to Strengthen the Nervous System

Rosemary Gladstar
Herbs for Stress and Anxiety: How to Make Herbal Remedies to Strengthen the Nervous System

Storey Basics, Storey Publishing, North Adams, MA 2014

When is the last time you felt peaceful? Bursting to-do lists, media overload, ISIS and Ebola; no wonder so many of us live in a state of chronic stress, an unfortunate path to illness and depression. But what can we do about it? Herbal matriarch Rosemary Gladstar wisely explains a good place to start is in strengthening our nervous systems. She shares almost a half-century of tried and true techniques in Herbs for Stress & Anxiety. Many of the remedies, both herbal and complementary treatments, seem particularly appropriate for the challenges we face today. To combat travel stress and a possible compromised immune system, take echinacea for one week before air travel. Because panic attacks often stem from unconscious fears, Jungian dream work, soul retrieval work and herbal plant spirit medicine can offer effective therapy. Negative reactions to chemical additives can be an underlying cause of panic attacks, so know what's in the food you're eating. A group of herbs known as nervines are remarkable in helping nervous system disorders. While conventional medicine tries to block receptors and information to calm you down, supportive herbal nervines help your sensory system become more receptive to healing. Herbal stimulants such as ginseng, holy basil, and rosemary, gently increase circulation and blood flow to nerve endings and enhance the nervous system. Unlike the cup of coffee or sugar-rich candy bar that depletes our energy even further when we're worn out, these gentle activator herbs actually restore and renew our systems.

Gail Lord is a freelance writer living in Massachusetts. Please send book review copies to 51 North Street, Grafton, MA 01519 or email

Read more book reviews from the Winter 2014 issue:
The Heal Your Gut Cookbook: Nutrient-Dense Recipes for Intestinal Health Using the GAPS Diet
Tuning the Human Biofield: Healing with Vibrational Sound Therapy
How Do You Pray? Inspiring Responses from Religious Leaders, Spiritual Guides, Healers, Activists and Other Leaders of Humanity