Going through the daily grind is stressful for most of us, and can send our stress hormone levels soaring. Life as we know it has come a long way today from when our parents were young. Trying to eke out an existence in the modern world of smart devices and media-controlled lifestyles send stress levels soaring through the roof. Add to that the stress of trying to get well when one is sick. Talk about pressure!
There’s no doubting the fact that stress is highly detrimental to one’s mental and physical well-being. Research has shown that heightened stress levels are closely associated with the release of the catecholamine hormone in the bloodstream. Our body produces catecholamine when we are stressed, and the scary part is that, the greater the levels of this hormone in our blood, the more prone we are to heart and heart-related diseases. This is mainly because catecholamine increases one’s heart rate and raises the blood pressure as well.
The sad reality is that stress is part and parcel of most people’s lives and getting rid of all the things that cause it is next to impossible. At the same time, heart disease is no joke, as it can have a severe impact on your lifestyle. This is why it is critical to reduce the amount of stress in your life. Now, although this is easier said than done, you will be surprised to know just how easy it is to lower your stress hormone levels and lower your risk of heart disease by making a few changes to your hectic day-to-day living.
Exercising to Reduce Stress Hormone Levels
Stress management is the call of the hour, and one of the best ways to beat stress is to exercise. When you exercise, your body releases a hormone known as endorphins, a natural “high.” Endorphins are known to block pain, reduce appetite and give a great feeling overall (the exercise high). This greatly helps ease stress levels and acts as an excellent mood stabilizer.
Another advantage of exercising is that its not just your biceps, triceps, stomach muscles, thigh muscles, calf muscles or any other muscles of your body that are trained, but it also exercises the most important muscle in your body: your heart. Keeping the heart in good shape will result in it serving you without problems for years to come. Apart from the above mentioned, when you exercise you also rid the fat in your arteries which helps you to maintain normal blood pressure levels.
Thus, beating stress can be as easy as counteracting the stress hormone through exercise. Start this week by waking up every morning and going for a jog or walk coupled with a few stretching and warm-up exercises. You can also explore other methods of busting stress such as spending a relaxing day at the spa or going in for a relaxing massage.
Meditation to Reduce Stress Hormone Levels
Perhaps, also one of the best ways to conquer stress is to attend meditation classes, as people who meditate on a regular basis swear by the soothing powers of meditating. So try out any of the methods mentioned above and discover a happier and healthier lifestyle, free from stress.
Supplements and Food to Help With Stress Levels
Sometimes (most of the time!) stress levels are aggravated when we don’t get the proper nourishment in our bodies. I have found the following supplements to be helpful.
- Probiotics: Stress hormones deplete natural gut flora that will ultimately cause yeast overgrowth and other intestinal issues. Taking probiotics counteract the bad bacteria caused by stress, medications and illness.
- Magnesium: Almost everyone is deficient in magnesium because of our poor soil, but thankfully, it is an easy thing to supplement. If you have trouble digesting Magnesium you can use Topical Magnesium Oil.
- Gelatin or Bone Broth: Treat your hair and skin while reducing inflammation at the same time. In the “old days” people would eat the meat and then suck on the bones to get the gelatin (yeah, crazy, huh?) and use bone broth in soups and sauces. Heard the term “soup bone?” Today bone broth and gelatin are increasing in popularity as people learn our grandparents had it right. Most people eat too much meat and not enough bone marrow. I have found that adding gelatin is easy and economical compared to bone broth and both offer the same benefits.
Get Enough Sleep
You simply must get good sleep. I take melatonin each night, and sleep like a baby. Someone I know had an issue sleeping and found (through a sleep study) that she has sleep apnea. She uses a machine to help her sleep. The truth is if you don’t sleep your night time cortisol levels increase, which affects your body’s ability to control stress.
Eliminate Caffeine From Your Diet
Caffeine increases cortisol production in your body, so if you are prone to stress drinking coffee and other caffeine drinks will simply escalate and elevate the pressure. One 12 oz mug of coffee increases blood cortisol levels by 30% in one hour and can remain elevated for up to 18 hours in the blood.