Know your Outlets:
Identifying our outlets for relieving stress are crucial to combating both acute and chronic stress. Outlets can include meditation, yoga, exercise, reading, and massages. Incorporate restorative activities into your daily routine so they are not forgotten.
Guided nightly meditations and use of essential oils can be helpful in support of adequate sleep hygiene. Sleep in a cool environment and avoid screens for 2-3 hours before bedtime including TV, laptop, and smartphones. They have a blue light frequency that turns our brains into awake mode.
Products like HeartMath and breathing exercises are efficient ways to easily incorporate stress outlets into our busy days.
- Appropriate supplementation during acute periods of stress, and for chronic stress management, can be quite helpful.
- B vitamin complexes are useful as they nourish the nervous system, will replenish levels of B vitamins that are depleted during stressful times, and are essential for production of our stress hormones.
- Magnesium supports muscle relaxation, combating tense muscles that develop under stress. Oral nightly supplementation with magnesium or epsom salt baths lend to a zen state before bed.
- Several adaptogenic herbs are also great options for curbing both high and low cortisol responses, including Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, Astragalus, and Ginseng. Talk with your healthcare provider about the safest and most effective herbs for your stress management.
Don't Let your Diet Drag you Down:
- With increased stress and food cravings, we’re more likely to make poor foods choices.
- Pack your diet with adequate protein, fiber and fat to avoid reaching for sugar in times of low energy. Plan for regular meals to avoid a dramatic drop in blood sugar that can further lead to poor food choices led by convenience.
- Carry healthy snacks and be prepared. Nuts and seeds, Epic Protein Bars, and vegetables with hummus are simple and filling options.
Sarah Silverman, ND