Unless you have the privilege of living in a Buddhist monastery high atop a Himalayan mountain ridge, you most likely live with your fair share of stress. Yeah, that seems fair!
Stress can be a good thing and it can be a bad thing. In small amounts, emotional stress can act like a compass, informing us where we are in life, how we feel about it, and how we can move into a better place.
But chronic stress does little more than make us sick of mind, body and spirit. Studies have shown repeatedly that stress can ultimately lead to disease and rapid aging.
That’s the bad news. The good news is, there are simple techniques you can use to combat the effects of stress on your health.
Here are 7 ways you can cope with emotional stress:
Whether it’s cycling, yoga or spin classes, exercise is beneficial in two different ways. One, it helps your muscles burn up the “fight or flight” hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline that your body produces during times of stress.
Second, while it’s ridding your body of bad chemicals, exercise is also creating good chemicals AKA endorphins that make you feel relaxed and happy. That’s a proverbial win/win.
Too many people think of massages as a luxury, something that only the elites do to pamper themselves. But the truth is, massages have been used over the globe for thousands of years as a stress reliever.
Historically, the Chinese used massage as a way to unblock chi, or energy channels. Hippocrates, the father of medicine himself, used massage, or “friction” as it was called back in the day, for physical healing treatments.
Massage is a wonderful way to relax your muscles and your mind. And when you are relaxed, not tense and tight, it sends a signal to your subconscious that you are actually calm and okay.
Meditation is one of the most powerful ways to relieve the effects of stress. It also happens to be a great overall health booster. And the best part is, you can gain these benefits in as little as 10 minutes a day, though longer is more beneficial.
If you’ve never meditated before, don’t feel intimidated. Anyone can do it but it will take a little practice, so expect to spend a little time each day. To commit to it, find a meditation technique that suits your personality – there are quite a few so do some research and pick one and just give it a try!
4. Eat Healthy
Are you an emotional eater? When stress hits do you immediately reach for some comfort food AKA junk food? Most of us make poor food choices when we are feeling stressed out, and this only causes our body more stress.
What you need to do during a stressful period of your life is treat your body as well as you can. Nutrition plays a big role in our overall well-being, so be sure to eat healthy, nutritious, whole foods like grass-fed meat and eggs, healthy fats (dairy, olive oil, avocados) and some fruits and veggies. Cut out refined carbs and sugars and drink plenty of filtered water.
5. Up Your B Intake
B vitamins are really important because they promote proper functioning of your brain and entire nervous system. Oftentimes people who are low in B vitamins can become more easily stressed than people who have the right levels. B deficiency is also a potential cause for irritability and depression, so be sure you get plenty in your diet. Excellent sources of B vitamins are liver, eggs and dairy products, as well as many nuts.
One of the reasons modern man has such as hard time with stress is because we are bombarded with it from numerous sources. It’s really important to unplug and disconnect from negative online friends and 24-hour news cycles.
We live in a culture that celebrates burning the candle at both ends. We are taught to revere people who squeeze the most time out of their day and only allow themselves 4 or 5 hours of rest each night. This is a surefire way to become ill.
As I mentioned, stress takes a toll on our physical body, and we need that important restorative sleep to heal and repair any damage. We also need to be able to think clearly to make good decisions that will help remove the stressors from our lives.
Try to get to bed at a decent time and make a habit of going to bed and rising at the same time every day, even weekends. Also, don’t use electronic devices at night – the blue light that these devices emit disturbs our natural circadian rhythm.
Unfortunately, stress is a part of being alive, and not many of us will be able to live completely stress-free. But if you practice using these stress-busting strategies, you will be able to handle even the greatest challenges and stay healthy while doing so.
While you are practicing these strategies to combat the stress in your life, there is something important you can do to help your body cope. Omega-3 fatty acids have been scientifically proven to help your body fight the effects of chronic stress. Taking a quality supplement is one simple thing you can do for your health.
Our DuOmega 3&7 not only offers Omega-3s, but also heart-healthy Omega-7s. It’s difficult to find that powerful combo anywhere else.