Stress and anxiety holistic treatments
Everybody feels stress! The good news is that stress can be a very beneficial emotion. Stress in its healthy form can help us get things done and to reach our goals. Stress can help us to be more efficient and can even help to improve our memory. A little stress before a big exam is just enough to get us through.
Stress is also the bodies alarm system which produces the bodies fight or flight response when we find ourselves in trouble. When we perceive danger the brain and glands flood the body with hormones like epinephrine, norepinephrine, cortisol and adrenaline. This causes an increase in blood pressure and heart rate. This helps all our senses to sharpen and makes us ready to move to avoid the stressful situation – like jumping out of the way of a moving car.
Stress has been shown to have other health benefits. Researchers believe it helps to build the immune system, causes your heart to function better and to protect you from infection.
Now for the bad news about stress.
Too much stress or prolonged stress can be very damaging to the body. Long term high stress levels can destroy the immune system, raise blood pressure, cause fatigue, depression, anxiety and heart disease. How do we know when stress is getting out of control? There are several warning signs to look out for.
- Inability to concentrate or complete tasks.
- More colds, flues,sickness
- Body aches and pains
- Headaches (muscle tension)
- Insomnia or too much sleep
- Can not eat or eat too much
- Angry and anxious behavior
What can we do to reduce stress?
Diet changes can really help. Lets start with foods that increase stress and should be avoided. Coffee and caffeinated beverages. Fatty and fried foods. Reduce animal foods. High protein foods elevate dopamine and norepinepherine which both increase anxiety and stress
Exercise should be done daily for 30 minutes. Aerobic exercises like running, swimming, or riding a bike are great. Yoga and tai chi can be relaxing.
Massage deep tissue. Epsom salt baths.
Supplements: my favorite stress reducers are Beta carotene, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, B6, B12, C, calcium, magnesium and zinc. Call New Life for doses.
Herbs: chamomile, lemon balm, passion flower and melatonin
Mind and body techniques: deep breathing, drop shoulders, prayer and meditation, laugh, adopt a pet, listen to calm music, walk, talk to friends, yoga, biofeedback, psychotherapy and my favorite fishing.
Aromatherapy aromas that are known to relax are lavender, rosemary, sandalwood, chamomile, and geranium.
Chiropractic regular chiropractic adjustments improve body function, improve body response to stressors and decrease body aches and pain. For more information about stress reduction come to New Life Chiropractic of Virginia Beach.