Dealing with Stress Simply
How we deal with stress is important. Here are some simple, easy and cost-effective tips to alleviate and manage it.
Local acupuncturist Linda DiAgostino says, “Acupuncture does help relieve the symptoms of stress, and this is supported by studies that show endorphins (natural painkiller hormones) are released into our system after the insertion of the acupuncture needles. This, in turn, helps quiet the mind, which then helps with stress relief. We know acupuncture helps balance the body's energies, which helps calm the person.”
An article in Psychology Today points out, “Acupuncture significantly reduces anxiety and stress, as well as improves depression. The evidence is clear: acupuncture can improve depression, anxiety and stress.”
New Cumberland Chiropractor Michael Treichler says, “When the body isn’t properly aligned, the communication within the body is ineffective. So, if you’re properly aligned, you’ll have less interference within the body, which will help you deal with stress much better.”
The Palmer School of Chiropractic Medicine says, “Chiropractic adjustments release muscle tension, soothe irritated spinal nerves and improve blood circulation—changes that can often alert the brain to switch off the fight-or-flight response, so the body can return to a more relaxed state. A chiropractor can also recommend nutritional supplementation, rehabilitative exercises, deep-tissue massage, relaxation techniques and postural changes to help patients manage stress.”
Meditation and quieting the mind works wonders. Using an app or finding a guided meditation can be beneficial to assist in making time for meditation. One of the best guided meditations for stress, Meditations to Relieve Stress, by Belaruth Naperstek, is available on iTunes and Amazon.
Simple yoga poses such as legs up the wall, child’s pose, down dog, and savasana (a relaxing lying down pose) can be done in the office or at home.
Stress generally increases the desire to turn to foods that are mass produced like candy and salty foods like chips. Instead, look to nature for stress-busters. Prevention Magazine suggests choosing foods like berries, asparagus, avocado, cashews, garlic, beef, oatmeal and 70 percent cacao dark chocolate.
Nothing helps beat stress better than a good cup of tea. Avoid caffeinated teas by choosing green, chamomile, lemon balm, peppermint, passion flower and rose teas, which are available at local grocery stores.
The Emotional Freedom Technique, or tapping, is free and easy to learn. Visit emofree.com to learn more. Exercise is also an excellent stress buster. The Anxiety and Depression Association says that the best types are aerobic-based exercises. Look for videos on YouTube or download a free app for beating stress, such as Breathe, 10% Happier, Headspace or the Calm App.
Ignoring stress can lead to long-term, detrimental effects. The Mayo Clinic says chronic activation of the stress-relieving system and overexposure to cortisol and stress-relieving hormones can result in anxiety, depression, digestive problems, headaches, heart disease, sleep problems, weight gain and memory and concentration impairment. Take care of stress now to live a long and happy life.
Cindy Beers, MS, 500-RYT, is the owner of Red Head Yoga, in Mechanicsburg, and the author of Mindful Yoga for Teen Anxiety and Mindful Yoga for Adult Anxiety.