In modern society, we are becoming increasingly desensitized to the feeling of stress. Tight work deadlines, caffeine consumption, busy family schedules, being stuck in traffic and scrolling through the latest current affairs on social media, can all contribute to the body being stressed.
Although it is difficult to avoid our stress in today’s fast-paced environment, the insidious effects that stress can have on our health means that it should be managed.
Research shows that elevated cortisol levels (the hormone released when we are stressed) can put an extra load on the body and can have a serious impact on our mood, energy levels, physical and emotional health, immune and digestive function and overall quality of life. Not surprisingly, stress has been linked to chronic headaches, insomnia, high blood pressure, weight gain, heart issues, diabetes, skin conditions, asthma, depression, and anxiety.
In order to manage our stress naturally, it’s important to prioritise activities that can actually reduce our stress.
Making a conscious effort to destress and make time for relaxation should be just as important as going to the gym, eating healthy food and spending time with our loved ones.
How to Manage Stress Naturally
Here are 5 tips to start de-stressing today:
1. Take a bath or warm shower – Heat supports the muscles and can also soothe the mind. Stock up on your favourite bath salts, get a bath pillow and decorate your bathroom with candles. Make time a few times a week to take a bath and unwind. If you don’t have a bath, find a local sauna or steam room and treat yourself.
2. Listen to relaxing music – research has shown that relaxing music can have a significant impact on how we feel and the slow tempo can support a calm state of mind by slowing down our breathing and heart rate, Relaxing music can be particularly beneficial when you’re getting ready for a tough day at work when you’re stuck in traffic, or, if you’re lying in bed trying to free your mind of stressful thoughts
3. Drink a relaxing cup of Green Tea – Green tea contains theanine, an amino acid that gives the flavour to green tea and has shown in studies to supports relaxation. Although green tea contains caffeine, theanine can is a caffeine antagonist, which means that it can counter the stimulating effects of caffeine. Create a tea-making ritual and spend 15 minutes to really take in the experience.
4. Step away from the screen – We know you have heard this time and time again but science has proved that not only does screen time makes you stressed it is also linked to mental health conditions. One Swedish study showing heavy cell phone use showed an increase in sleep disorders in men and an increase in depressive symptoms in both men and women. While it can be hard to put the phone down, your mind will thank you for it later. Monitor how much time you are spending on your phone (most phones can now tell you your average daily activity) and set a limit. Before bed, turn on DO NOT DISTURB mode and make time for other activities that will help you unwind and benefit your wellbeing, such as reading, talking with a loved one or journaling.
Stress can result in high levels of cortisol being produced in the body, which can dysregulate our sleep hormones. Specific nutrients such as vitamin C and magnesium can help support high levels of cortisol in the body, which is why our product Essential Sleep and Stress Nutrients contains vitamin C and magnesium to not only support deep, restorative sleep but also to support your stress levels. Call us on 0800 345 999 for a free 15-minute sleep consultation with a qualified Sleep Specialist to see if Essential Sleep and Stress Nutrients is right for you.