Lifestyle

Stress Management

December 18th, 2013 by

stress-cartoon

The world’s biggest killer may officially be heart disease or cancer but the silent epidemic that is often a major factor in the development of these conditions and which is truly wiping us out is stress.

Unless you quit your job, give your children away and move to a remote Yoga retreat in the mountains, it is impossible to escape stress.

Everyday life is punctuated by razor sharp balls of stress being pelted at us. We just need to learn how to turn these balls from razors to cotton wool. How we deal with stress on a physiological level is determined entirely by our mindset and internal management systems.

Never underestimate how small shifts in your daily routine and behaviour can create huge breakthroughs in your life. Stress is a great example of this.

First up, it has been proven time and time again that if you are not getting enough sleep then you are not going to be able to cope as well with what life throws at you. But the irony is that when you are going through trying times, sleep may not come easily due to thoughts and worries bouncing around your brain. Try Valerian teas to calm you, and fill your bedroom with all things lavender scented to help switch your brain off. Try meditation in the evening, and keep a note pad beside your bed which you can scribble down your worries and then leave them there for the night to allow you to sleep in peace.

What you eat is also significant for stress management. Ensure that you get plenty of protein, as amino acids make serotonin which is the brain’s calming chemical. Also balance all your meals and snacks with protein foods to help balance your blood sugar levels, which is important for promoting a stress-free mind. Incorporate plenty of essential

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fats into your diet, like omega 3 found in oily fish. The brain is made up of 60% essential fats, so you need plenty in your diet to keep your mind in ‘stress-busting’ mode. A colourful plate makes for a colourful mood, so a rainbow coloured diet is your aim.

Many nutrients are drained by stress, including the B vitamin complex, zinc and magnesium. You may even find that you have white flecks appearing on your nail bed – this is an indication of mineral deficiencies often caused by stress. Supplement with a high quality daily multi nutrient, to fill any nutritional gaps and bestow an energising sense of control.

Exercise is a great way to release tension and promote a sense of control. Remember high impact sports are a form of stress on the body – therefore focus on calming activities throughout stressful times such as power walking, swimming, Yoga and Pilates.

There is no better stress release than laughter. No matter how busy you are or how stressed, always make time for those individuals in your life who make you truly happy – whether your partner, your family, your friends or your dog!

 

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