Avoiding stress has become impossible these days as chronic stress is an epidemic in our society where faster are better.
According to a meta-analysis involving 300 studies, chronic stress damages immunity makes you fat and has a huge impact in diabesity. A study published in the journal Appetite found that stressed-out women had higher waist circumference than non-stressed ones.
The link between stress, blood sugar, and belly fat is long known. Chronic stress leads to an increase in insulin, which in turn contributes to insulin resistance, weight gain, and diabetes.
When you`re under stress, the adrenal glands release hormones like cortisol and adrenaline which increase blood pressure, raise the heart rate, cause blood clots, increase belly fat storage, and damage the brain`s memory center. In brief, they negatively affect the entire body.
The hormonal havoc causes many adverse consequences. For instance, most people who are pressed for time tend to have a gigantic coffee in the morning along with a muffin. Coffee is known to increase stress hormones, which combined with sugar in the muffin, increases insulin as well. Consequently, this leads to inflammation and increase in the stress hormones. Simply put, sugar makes you stressed out even if you don’t have any reason to be stressed!
Managing Stress Starts with Your Diet
The right diet can help a lot when it comes to reducing stress and its impact on your life. Eating whole, real foods helps restore balance to insulin, cortisol and other hormones.Eliminating caffeine, sugar, and refined sugars from your diet help maintain an even-keeled mindset during the day.
Food controls hormones, metabolism, and your gene expression, meaning that eating right food restores hormonal balance, keeps blood sugar in check, and reduces stress`s impact on your day-to-day activities.
Reduce Stress with these Simple, Powerful Techniques
Stress is defined as the “bodily or mental tension resulting from factors that tend to alter an existent equilibrium.” Your thoughts become unbalanced.
Stressors can be real or perceived. For instance, you might imagine your partner is angry at you and regardless of whether they are or not, you perceive this as stressful and raise your stress levels.
The good news is that there is a way to manage stress and make your duties and day-to-day activities easier. Among them are:
Tapping is a combination of Chinese acupressure and modern psychology. To learn more about this technique, get a copy of The Napping Solution by Nick Orther.
2. Address the Underlying Causes of Stress
There are many different causes of stress, including gluten allergies, mercury toxicity, and magnesium or vitamin B12 deficiencies. All of them change the body, which is turn changes the mind.
Humans are designed to be constantly doing something and even if we are not working, our mind is focused on work. Learning how to relax is very important. Regardless of whether it is drinking beer, sitting in front of the TV, walking, or jogging, stick to what works for you best.
4. Learn New Skills
Try learning new skills, such a biofeedback, taking a hot bath, walking in the woods, getting a massage, yoga, or progressive muscle relaxation.
5. Move Your Body
It has been scientifically shown that exercise helps burn off stress chemicals and treats depression even more effectively than Prozac.
To balance your stress response, take supplements like B-complex vitamins, magnesium, zinc, vitamin C, and pantothenic acid.
Use herbs which balance your stress response, such as ginseng, Rhodiolarosea, Siberian ginseng, cordyceps, ashwagandha, and other adaptogenic herbs.
8. Use Heat Therapy
Sauna, taking a hot bath, and any other heat therapy helps the body relax and set on a relaxation response.
9. Change Your Beliefs
Change your beliefs and point of view to common situations to reduce stress and its impact on your daily life.
10. Find a Community
Work on building a new network of friends and family members which are best tool to reducing stress and achieving satisfaction.
Deep and slow breaths are key to improving stress response as this activates the relaxation nerve, which goes through the diaphragm. Take 5 deep breaths and see how you feel afterwards.
Do a little research on your own to find guided meditations and relaxation techniques and see which one works for you.
Sleep should be your priority. Aim at getting 8 hours of sleep a night and take a nap in case you missed some. Lack of sleep increases stress hormones, which is something you want to avoid.
Sources: Suzanne C. Segerstrom and Gregory E. Miller, Psychological Stress and the Human Immune System: A Meta-Analytic Study of 30 Years of Inquiry, Psychol Bull. Author manuscript; available in PMC Feb 7, 2006.
Macedo DM1, Diez-Garcia RW2., Sweet craving and ghrelin and leptin levels in women during stress., Appetite. 2014 Sep;80:264-70. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2014.05.031. Epub 2014 May 28.