The stress of the past several years has affected just about everyone. Between the pressures of the pandemic, and the constant daily grind of school, work, and home, it’s possible to be under astronomical levels of stress. Controlling that stress in an era where it’s hard to find some items in the stores or go where you want can be difficult. That’s why it’s essential to find new ways of controlling stress.
Meditation has been around for millennia, but many people are just now learning how to use this technique to manage their stress. If you have never meditated before, start with simple guided meditations, and work up to longer sessions that you control on your own. Meditation can be simple or complicated; many people can reduce their stress levels by following a basic breathing pattern. If you suffer from bouts of anxiety, complex meditations can be a great tool to get you through panic attacks.
No, we’re not talking about stress-eating. When our bodies undergo stress, one reaction is looking for food. It is believed that this is a holdover from a time in which human beings under pressure would need to build up calories to deal with the object or event that was stressing them. Today, however, this often serves as a hindrance. Eating while stressed typically only leads to weight gain.
Choose healthy foods that can keep you fueled to balance both of these opposing forces. Then, try some of these foods the next time you feel like panic-eating.
1. Swiss chard – This lettuce is packed full of nutrients such as magnesium that have been shown to reduce the signs of stress. Antioxidants can reverse the effects of stress, helping skin to appear younger and assisting the body to break down toxins that build up during a panic attack. Swiss chard will not contribute to weight gain as an almost zero-calorie food.
2. Sweet potatoes – Foods heavy in carbohydrates have been shown to reduce stress hormones such as cortisol. Of course, the problem with these foods is that excess consumption of carbohydrates is not healthy. Sweet potatoes are full of nutrients, however, making them one of the best choices as a way to get your daily amount of carbohydrates.
3. Eggs – This food is high in choline, which is only found in a few foods. Eggs are one of the easiest ways to find choline and prepare.
Rather than adding these foods to your diet, try to replace them with less healthy foods. Replacing these foods will also help improve your overall diet, which can (over time) help to reduce the stress in your life.
There are plenty of benefits to drinking more water. Water helps flush out toxins, reduce blood pressure, and control appetite. While drinking water may not directly reduce stress, it can affect many other bodily functions and cycles that can contribute to reducing stress.
It can be hard to sleep when you’re stressed, so start to regulate your sleep before it gets to the point of full-blown insomnia. Start by keeping a regular bedtime routine in which you avoid screentime at least one hour before bed. If possible, try to schedule this for the same time every day. Not only will this help to regulate your body to fall asleep simultaneously, but having a routine will also help regulate your overall pattern, which will help reduce your stress.