As we head pell mell into the supercharged political smackdown season of the 2012 presidential election, it is evident that we are in for a tumultuous ride. On the GOP side, it is only a matter of time before some bare-knuckle brawling separates the leader from the rest. That process is sure to cause discomfort among the American people, who will be televised to, radio contacted, spammed, Tweeted, blogged and canvassed until they are blue in the face.

Meanwhile, not many people seem to like President Obama right now, and any credible candidate running against him is going to have to mount a ferocious attack on the president’s policies and positions. The same media machinery will blast out the story on the hour, and we are sure to experience some genuine malaise.

I believe we’re going to want to keep some natural remedies on hand to cope with what I’d like to dub "Political Malaise Syndrome." 

We’ll want to stock up on digestive aids, and remedies for nausea, vertigo, mental funk and sleeplessness.

Just the recent last few weeks of politicking has already induced indigestion among many people. For this, I recommend papaya enzyme tablets. Papaya enzyme derives from tropical papaya fruit. The enzyme is called papain, and helps to break down proteins much more easily. If you’ve had a tough time digesting dinner as a result of recent candidate events and interviews, coupled with regular president-bashing, these tablets, available at natural food stores, may make the road ahead much easier. NOW Foods makes a good papaya enzyme supplement.

Even amidst the point-gains and great moments that can and do occur in presidential elections, nausea often accompanies the protracted wrangling, finger-pointing and general mud-slinging that typifies elections with highly opposed ideologies. For nausea, I know of no better natural aid than ginger root. It’s simple, it’s safe, and it is highly effective. In human studies, ginger root proves every bit as effective as Dramamine for motion sickness, and better on boats. And on land? A cup of ginger tea can quell nausea in minutes. You can buy ginger tea, or you can grate fresh ginger and make your own strong tea. Traditional Medicinal Teas makes a wonderful ginger tea, widely available.

And in California and Colorado, citizens can go into their neighborhood medical marijuana dispensaries, and purchase cannabis, a proven effective aid for relieving nausea. If it works for chemotherapy patients, you know it’s effective medicine.

When political candidates play fast and loose with facts, shift positions and contradict themselves, there can be a sense of vertigo, a loss of balance, a feeling that the floor has dropped out. Ginkgo biloba supplements, made using a leaf extract of an ancient species of Asian tree, may help to ease these paranormal sensations. Ginkgo improves circulation to fine vessels in the ear, and that has been shown to aid people who suffer from vertigo. Look for Nature’s Way Ginkgold standardized ginkgo extract supplements.

Mental funk is a broad description for the combination of low mental energy, blues, and bewilderment that besets people after many months of ceaseless political mixed martial arts in the national octagon. Among all remedies, the one I unhesitatingly recommend most is Rhodiola rosea. In dozens of human studies, Rhodiola has been shown to improve mental alertness, concentration, memory and reaction time, increase overall energy, improve stamina and endurance, and significantly brighten mood. I like to call Rhodiola rosea a “gateway herb.” Use it, and you’ll understand the actual power of herbal remedies.

Look for Rhodiola Energy capsules by Enzymatic Therapy, or Rapid Rhodiola spray by Europharma.

Inevitably many will lose sleep over the protracted presidential election as blood sport. Many will toss and turn, stare at the ceiling and try to will themselves to sleep. This generally does not work. But a good extract of Passion flower can drop you off into sleep easily and safely. Passion flower has been around as a sleep aid and anti-anxiety remedy for centuries, and human studies support its effectiveness. Try either the Gaia Herbs or Herb Pharm brands of passion flower extracts, and get a decent night’s sleep.

As the wise saying goes, “this too shall pass.” Today’s arguments, debates and urgent dispatches are forgotten in tomorrow’s headlines. The remedies described above will help to get you through Political Malaise Syndrome. They’ll ease the process, and make life more comfortable. Make sure to take time out from the 24/7 coverage, have some fun, enjoy family and friends, and do things you love. That will help too.

Chris Kilham is a medicine hunter who researches natural remedies all over the world, from the Amazon to Siberia. He teaches ethnobotany at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he is Explorer In Residence. Chris advises herbal, cosmetic and pharmaceutical companies and is a regular guest on radio and TV programs worldwide. His field research is largely sponsored by Naturex of Avignon, France. Read more at www.MedicineHunter.com.

Chris Kilham is a medicine hunter who researches natural remedies all over the world, from the Amazon to Siberia. Chris advises herbal, cosmetic and pharmaceutical companies, is a regular guest on radio and TV programs worldwide, and is the author of fifteen books. Read more at MedicineHunter.com.