We know for a fact that stress can crop up anywhere and that it has become an unavoidable part of life. Although we cannot eliminate stress completely, we need to make sure that we keep our stress within healthy levels or we could end up suffering from health problems that are commonly associated with excessive stress levels.
There are so many practical and simple ways to deal with stress, but only very few people actually make use of them. That’s because in this hectic and fast-paced environment we are exposed to we are in demand for instant gratification — and instant stress relief solutions are no exception.
More and more people are resorting to prescription drugs to control and relieve stress; the most common stress-relief drugs fall under the classification of antidepressants and anxiolytics. Although these medications can be effective in alleviating the symptoms associated with stress, they have also been shown to have adverse effects to some users. There are options for natural relief from stress and below are some simple and natural stress remedies which have been proven to help keep stress levels down:
1. Make the Right Food Choices
Your choices of food greatly affect your health and your general sense of well being. Although it should be everyones goal to have a well-balanced diet to make the body stronger and better able to deal with the negative effects of stress, there are certain foods that you need to remember when feeling especially stressed out. Stay away from caffeinated drinks, sugary treats and fatty foods during stressful periods as they are stimulating and can aggravate stress. Instead, your choices of food should include foods like:
- Soy products
- Dairy (in moderation)
- Leafy green vegetables
- Whole grains
2. Find Time to Exercise
You probably already know that exercise does your body good, but you may not know that there is a significant connection between exercise and stress. When you exercise, your body releases endorphins, which are hormones that fight stress and exercise also helps get your mind off your problems and clears your head. Virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to weightlifting, can act as a stress reliever. Some exercises are better than others in relieving stress, like aerobic exercises, Yoga, Tai Chi and Pilates. However, your choice of physical activity should still depend upon your interest and physical condition.
3. Listen to Calming Music
The soothing power of music is well-established. Listening to the right music can have a tremendously relaxing effect on your mind and body, especially slow, quiet classical music. This type of music has been shown to have a beneficial effect on your physiological functions, slowing the pulse and heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing the levels of stress hormones. Other than its direct effect to the system, music can absorb your attention, act as a distraction and give you time for self-discovery.
4. Olfactory Route to Serenity
Aromatherapy is basically defined as a form of alternative medicine in which certain scents are inhaled to achieve therapeutic benefit. The effectiveness of aromatherapy in helping soothe and calm the emotions has long been proven. Research suggests odor molecules affect certain brain areas that control emotional memories, heart rate, blood pressure, hormone balance and stress levels. The most commonly used scent for relaxation is lavender. So if you need to relax, light a lavender-scented candle or drop a few drops of lavender oil in a diffuser and inhale the soothing scents.
Stress in moderation can pep up your life, keep you sharp and help you accomplish things. The issues begin when stress becomes too much, it can lead to mental, physical and emotional problems. It is important that you know how to manage stress efficiently as the levels of stress that you are experiencing significantly affects the quality of your life.