There’s been some talk about stress here before. Nevertheless, it’s important to understand what stress is, and what it does to our life.
Today’s world is a madhouse. It leaves very little, if any, time to properly rest and to be at peace, to calm the mind, to really put those tensions behind. So, if you don’t want stress to become the master of your life, you need to take some action, keeping in mind all we mentioned before – nutrition, regular exercise and relaxation.
Signs Of Stress
So, how do you know you’re stressed out? Stress impacts the whole human being – body, mind, feelings and behavior, so it can produce all sorts of symptoms. Keep that in mind when you feel some strange neck pain, headaches, back pain, feeling of a lump in the throat, nervous laughs and ticks, sudden mood swings and similar. Other than that „mild“ sensations, stress can lead to more serious conditions and symptoms, like high blood pressure, digestion problems, migraines, insomnia, dizziness and lack of energy, heart palpitations and many more.
It’s often hard to objectively evaluate yourself and to really know how stressed you are. So, look for the usual signs. Do you feel nervous, anxious, at the edge of crying, do you suddenly lose your temper or change the mood? Do you jell at people, people close to you? Do you sleep badly? How hard it is for you to focus and take the right choices? Do you have trouble talking to other people? Do you eat when not hungry, or skip meals entirely? Do you need to take a smoke or to drink a shot to get through a bad day? If you see yourself in more than three questions it’s time to take that stress under control.
Now, it’s impossible to exclude the stress out of your life, simply because it’s a normal part of human existence. Some people manage, and they do it so well, to use stress as a fuel to overcome some challenges they face in life. If you embrace that attitude stress can actually be a good motivator, so long you know how to relax and to keep it under control.
When thinking about the impact of stress people tend to look only the negative sides. But, from body and mind standpoint, any stress, even the most joyful and happy moments in life, has a similar impact, similar physical response, and imprint. Remember all those gurus from the old east and their “you shouldn’t be nor too happy, nor too sad method” of reaching your true potential? Well, looking at it from a stress perspective, it really is true.
Sources of stress are many. Humankind is fighting stress from civilizations early history, although we were better at resolving stress in those early ages. Today life is much more organized, our lives are on schedule, and we lead a more controlled lifestyle. And humans are creatures of habits, we don’t like changes of any kind, we have a strong fear of the unknown. So many of life’s big changes will produce some stress. And the consequences won’t be so frustrating if we know how to deal with stress.
Physical Response To Stress
When under tension our body starts with the production of adrenaline, the stress hormone. That’s what’s causing the pumping heart feeling you sometimes notice. The heart rate goes up and the blood pressure levels are rising. At the same time, the blood flow to our digestion system starts to drop, because more blood is needed in our muscles, so the person can experience some stomach sensations or cramps. Adrenaline is also responsible for releasing fatty acids and glucose to our bloodstream, as a base for providing more energy to deal with the stressful situation. So the fat and cholesterol levels will start to rise. That alone can cause some serious dangers to your health. That’s why you need some exercise or physical activity, not only to burn fat but to resolve negative impact stress can have on your health.
Relax – the Best Way To Reduce the Damage Of Stress
If you want to feel better you’ll need to find a way to relax, because you have no alternative. If you are persistent in chasing your goals that will put a tremendous amount of stress upon you, you might burn out. Know your stress level and do not go outside of it. Deal with your choices, with your relationships, and resolve or try to resolve all that’s making you uncomfortable, angry, sad…. use your regular yearly vacations, do something good for yourself, enjoy your time. Exercise regularly. Engage in yoga, some other relaxation techniques, deep breathing exercises, meditation. In other words, find some interests that will take your thoughts off stressful situations. Time under tension should be leveled with the time in relaxation.
Fight the Stress With the Right Food
Now, under stress some of the nutrients get depleted very fast, so think about incorporating them in a balanced nutritional food plan.
The first are the B vitamins, for the release of energy and maintaining the stable nervous response. You’ll find them in green veggies, potatoes, fruits, brown rice and whole wheat grains, eggs, milk and dairy products, seafood, nuts and seeds, fresh lean meats.
Then you’ll need vitamin C, for boosting the immune system and fighting inflammation. Fresh fruit, especially citruses and black currant or freshly squeezed juices, are the perfect source. Think about supplementing this vital vitamin for your great health and long functional life.
Also, the mineral zinc will do well for supporting all of these functions. Red meats, liver, egg yolks, dairy, seafood, are also good sources of zinc.
Plan your carbs intake right, lower GI number and complex carbs are your best choice when dealing with stress.
Note for the end – alcohol, coffee, harsh spices and similar, should be taken under strict control because they can do more damage than good when you are stressed out. Do not make things worse by adding boosting substances like caffeine to your already pumped up system.
And relax people…