How to cope better with stress
Stress is a natural part of life. As much as we try to keep all of our ducks in a row, sometimes life throws you a curve ball and you can’t do much about it. I think many people are feeling overwhelmed and just a little anxious in the current climate.
There is a lot of information about how to destress, but sometimes that is just not an option! So instead let’s look at a few ways to help your body better handle stressful times.
Legs up the wall
Laying on the floor with your heels up agains the wall for 15 minutes will give your overactive nervous system a little break. It forces you to breath deeply and will activate your parasympathetic nervous system. The part of your nervous system is also called the ‘rest and digest’ system, when you are in this mode you produce less stress hormones, and your body is able to do the repair processes it needs to, to keep you well.
Eat real food
When we are stressed and overwhelmed it can be easy to opt for the packaged and processed foods out of convenience. Yet, these are not usually the foods which will nourish you and help your better cope with stress. Stress naturally depletes several B vitamins as well as vitamin C, so it’s important to top these up. These same nutrients can decrease stress hormones when levels are optimal. I recommend packing your fridge with easy to cook whole foods so that you can whip up a quick meal even if you don’t feel like putting great effort in.
Image sourced from Pinterest
A few easy combos:
Eggs + spinach + whole grain toast + avocado
Whole grain or gluten free pasta + tuna + cherry tomatoes + pesto
Tinned chickpeas + rocket + balsamic dressing + steam broccoli + crushed almonds
Calming herbs + Adaptogens
Use nature to help you through the stress. Chamomile, lemon balm and passionflower tea are just a few of my favourites to help reduce stress hormones and promote more calmness. Tulsi and withania are two adaptogen herbs which help to calm the nervous system and uplift your mood. Both can be used as a tea or a tonic.
Maintain your sleep routine
It’s really important to keep a regular bed time and wake time, this helps to regulate your stress hormones and helps you get quality sleep. Try to switch devices off 1-2 hours before bed, use the same wind down routine, and dim your lights to help you fall asleep easier. Quality sleep is essential to managing your stress levels, supporting your immune system and for allowing your body to best repair itself.