The Rise in Mental Wellbeing Concerns and People Looking for Natural Solutions.

The Rise in Mental Wellbeing Concerns and People Looking for Natural Solutions.

The Rise in Mental Well-Being Concerns

We are all very aware of the growing mental health crisis in the UK. The NHS is struggling to cope with meeting this great need and according to the Office for National Statistics, the number of adults struggling with depression has almost doubled since the Coronavirus pandemic, with over 16% of adults across the UK showing signs of depression (1). To give you an idea of how extreme the situation is, in February 2022 alone there were 301,481 new referrals for adults requiring mental health services, which was 76% higher than the same month in 2020 (2). And in August last year, the number of people in the UK waiting for community mental health care support was 1.2 million. And it’s important to note that not only has there been an increase in demand for adult mental health services, but there has also been an increase in the severity of cases.

We are all very aware that the NHS is struggling to cope with meeting this great need. The demand for mental health support is overwhelming and has led to more and more people who are turning to natural solutions to help with mental health conditions like anxiety and low mood.

Health expert and chartered psychologist, Dr. Naomi Newman-Beinart, shares her top lifestyle tips to help support mental health. Dr Naomi has a PhD in health psychology and is passionate about natural solutions that help people lead happier and fuller lives. 


Dr. Naomi's Top 5 Tips for Mental Well-Being

  1.     Most of us understand that our daily diet can influence our physical health. For example, we know that if we eat a lot of unhealthy food, we are likely to gain weight. But in recent years there has been more of a focus on the relationship between diet and mental health, with research showing clear links between what we put into our body and how we feel. Studies have found that the classic Mediterranean diet is associated with a lower risk of depression when compared to people eating a traditional Western diet (3). The reason for this has been suggested to be due to the anti-inflammatory foods comprising a large part of the Mediterranean diet, e.g. fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and legumes, compared with the higher calorie and higher fat Western diet. Since some mental health problems have been linked to inflammation, it makes sense that a higher anti-inflammatory diet should be linked with reduced mental health disorders. Of course, there is still a way to go to understand more about the links between diet and mental health, but the science certainly leaves us something to think about when it comes to deciding what type of diet we choose to follow.  


  1. Fresh air is always the best thing when you're feeling a little lethargic or mentally low. Research shows that that going for a walk not only has a good effect on general wellbeing, but also leads to positive changes in your brain (4). The researchers stated that the benefits of this may also affects concentration, working memory, and the psyche as a whole. Getting outside and going for a walk in a green space will allow you to clear your mind and get a bit of exercise whilst you're at it. If you live in a city, try to head to a park or a larger green space so you can really immerse yourself in nature, and perhaps listen to a motivational or inspirational podcast whilst you're out and about. Most likely you will come home feeling more positive and upbeat.


  1. Just like eating and drinking, sleep is an essential human need. Sleep is essential to maintain a calm mood and reduce anxiety and stress. While we sleep at night, the brain processes emotions and experiences, promoting emotional balance and resilience. Getting into a sleep routine before bed can make a huge difference in the quality of sleep, and for most people having a nightly routine works well for them. It’s important to find what works for YOU, and many people try self-care rituals before bedtime, such as, taking a hot bath with essential oils or bath salts, lighting aromatherapy candles, or listening to relaxing music and reading.


Rise in Mental WellBeing

  1. For some people, eating well, getting fresh air and exercise, and having a nighttime routine, can be really helpful when it comes to emotional support. But sometimes we feel that we need a bit more help to manage anxiety around a busy lifestyle, and this is where plant-based remedies can play a role. From oils and tinctures to topical products, CBD (Cannabidiol) has taken the natural health industry by storm. There’s still a lot to learn as CBD is a relatively recent area of research, however preliminary results are really promising. Fascinating research in the Archives of General Psychiatry found that CBD oil was able to modulate the stress response in people’s brains, as shown on MRI brain scans (5). This means that researchers could see CBD working to regulate the brain’s response to stress. Another study investigated the effects of CBD in a clinical population of patients with anxiety and found that anxiety scores decreased within the first month in almost 80% of patients and remained decreased for the duration of the study (6). So, CBD may be a useful option for some people to help manage symptoms of anxiety in daily life. But before you try CBD oil, do talk to your GP as CBD may interact with certain medications.


  1. If you feel like you need something extra to support your emotional health, then think about adding more mushrooms to your diet. I’m not talking about button mushrooms from your local supermarket - I’m talking about functional mushrooms like Reishi, Cordyceps and Lion’s Mane. These types of functional mushrooms are traditionally used in many parts of Asia as a mood tonic or ‘adaptogen’. Adaptogens are natural substances that are said to help the body adapt to stress and protect against some of its negative effects, and have been shown to improve mood, relieve tiredness and encourage better sleep (7). Cannabotech's Mood Support products are a great, natural alternative to uplift your mood and provide gentle focus and energy. 




  7.   doi:10.1186/s13020-018-0214-9

Bea Lyus

Bea Lyus is an experienced Naturopathic Nutritional Therapist. She is a member of the British Association for Applied Nutrition and Nutritional Therapy (BANT), the regulatory body for Nutritional Therapists and is registered by the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council (CNHC).