Stress—a word so commonly used, that even my 6-year-old asks me, “mamma are you stressed?” Whatever gave him that idea?
Stress is the way in which we respond to external stimuli, and what causes our body to feel stressed is different for each of us. It could be work, family-life, travel, finances, health, traffic, you get the picture. But stress is not always a bad thing, in fact a little bit of stress is what give us our get-up-and-go juice to get things done in the day. The problem ensues when too much of a good thing becomes not a good thing.
Sometimes the body needs to go through a phase of adaption to adjust to the new norm. I know I personally went through this after I became a mom and then a working-mom. I didn’t even realize my body was adjusting and trying to adapt to so many new stressors. Before I knew it, I was suffering from something called adrenal exhaustion. 9 years with 3 kids and I am in a much better place with my physical, mental, and spiritual health now than ever before. All the experiences, good and bad, have resulted in tremendous personal growth and I’ve used nutrition to help build a stronger, healthier and happier me.
Remember it’s not the strongest who survive; it’s those who can adapt.
Here are my top 5 tips to help your body stress less:
- Start your day with a green smoothie. Protein, fibre and good fats first thing in the morning supports the adrenal glands, blood sugar and metabolism. Omega-3s in particular allow your mind to feel calm, yet have focused energy. When you eat protein in the morning it jumps starts your metabolism—(important for busting belly fat). Food is very powerful for the mind.
- Eat 5 times per day and make sure you are eating protein each time you eat. Protein stabilizes blood sugar levels and gives your adrenal glands (your stress glands) much needed support. Proper regulation of cortisol (stress hormones) is essential to help your body deal with daily stress.
- Set up a healthy bedtime routine. I take an Epsom salt bath every night for about 20 minutes with a few drops of lavender essential oils and 1 cup of Epsom salts. The combination of the magnesium and sulfates really helps the body to detox and ease sore and tired muscles. It just screams relaxation.
- Disconnect electronic devices after 9 pm. I used to start working again after I put the kids to bed. But I realized I couldn’t shut my brain off, and instead of getting into a deep sleep I had busy brain. Now I shut off the Wi-Fi and place my phone in a different part of the house. I really enjoy the technology-free time.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. And press repeat. I used to worry about everything. I wanted my life “perfect”, what is perfect anyway?? I have gone through some very big and real stress in my life, so I do know the difference between the big problems and the small ones. So, if I don’t get the beds made in the morning before we leave for school, oh well. If I order pizza instead of cooking, that’s ok too. I also had to learn to say NO to a lot of extras that were taxing on my family. It’s not forever, but I have found that we were just trying to do too much and it was having the opposite effect of fun.
Just remember to take each day at a time, we are given one life; let’s make the best of it!