A feature on Stress & Anxiety

When we’re stressed it affects all other aspects of our health. Our body prioritises making stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol) over other functions in the body, for a fight or flight response to the stress.

Over a prolonged period of time stress can have a very negative impact on many areas of our health including: gut health, immune health, female hormones, heart health, weight and moods.

If you are struggling with any stress or anxiety, we can support you - click here to complete our online interactive questionnaire, and book a FREE Health Check in.

Here are some top tips to help you support your body if you have stress or anxiety.

FOOD & DIET TIPS
  1. Eat fresh, unprocessed foods with: plenty of vegetables, wholegrains, quality protein and good fats (olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, nuts and seeds)
  2. Eat Omega 3 essential fats – essential for brain health, including memory, moods and cognition. Eg salmon, sardines, mackerel, anchovies. Vegetarian/vegan sources include: chia seeds , flaxseeds, hemp seeds and walnuts
  3. Avoid sugar and refined carbohydrates– too much causes an imbalance in blood sugar levels, which makes us less able to deal with stress and has a negative effect on moods and energy levels.
  4. Have protein with each meal – this helps balance blood sugar levels and provides building blocks for neurotransmitters in the brain, eg serotonin (needed for good moods). Sources include: nuts/ seeds/ eggs/ chicken/ fish/ meat/ beans/ lentils/ tofu.
  5. Reduce the caffeine (black tea / coffee) – it’s a stimulant and can affect anxiety. Switch to green tea, which has less caffeine in and herbal teas.
  6. Avoid alcohol – too much can rob the body of vital nutrients and have a negative effect on stress and anxiety levels

Consider a supplement for additional support for stress or anxiety:

  • Magnesium is often referred to as ‘nature’s tranquiliser’, it is particularly useful for helping the body relax and is rapidly used up in stress.
  • L-Theanine – an amino acid found in green tea, that promotes a feeling of calm and relaxation, without drowsiness.
  • Lemon Balm – traditionally been used in herbal medicine as a relaxant.
  • Ashwaganda – an adaptogenic herb that helps balance the body’s response to stress and relax the nervous system.
  • B vitamins – need to support the nervous system and support energy levels
  • Omega 3 – essential for brain health, including moods.
  • Probiotics – beneficial bacteria that support gut health. There is a strong link between the gut and the brain, via the nervous system, so these may also be helpful.

LIFESTYLE TIPS

  1. Take time out – find something you enjoy and make time for it regularly. Learn to say no! Get outdoors, close to nature.
  2. Sleep – make it a priority to get enough sleep. This is vital for rest and repair. When we’re under stress we need more sleep around 8-10 hours
  3. Exercise – it produces endorphins (in the brain) which make you feel good – don’t overdo it however as excessive amounts can cause stress in the body.
  4. Use essential oils for example in a diffuser (try a ready-made blend of oils for relaxation/stress.) Add a drop or two of lavender oil to the underside of your pillow at night
  5. Try a lavender wheat pillow, heated, to put around your shoulders as you sit and watch tv/read a book in bed.
  6. Have a hot bath with Epsom bath salts to help relaxation. Or even add them to a bowl of hot water to put your feet in.

And finally, don’t suffer alone.

We all know how important it is to have people around us to support us, and at Inside Out Health we want to help support your health. You can pop into the shop and we also offer FREE 15 minute wellness check ins by phone as well as full consultations (in person or via skype/telephone). All of these are with our registered Nutritional Therapists.
 
You can contact us today on 01737 223499, or by clicking on the links below:
 

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