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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

7 Steps to De-Stress

~ De-Stress To A Better You ~

Gain an understanding, and grasp the seriousness of the physiology of stress. This is important because most people do not "get" the stress/heart health connection. Bottom line: You CAN control how stress affects you.

Eat fresh organic foods to help replenish and rebalance your body. Fresh foods contain life-giving enzymes which actually get depleted as we age. (Depleted enzymes are linked to digestive problems, obesity, and chronic illness!) Eat fresh fruits and veggies, and a fresh green salad every day. You'll notice a difference within a week in how you feel and look.

Tip: Instead of orange juice (which may be pasteurized thereby losing some nutrients and enzymes), squeeze fresh oranges for enzymes and nutrients, especially vitamin C, folic acid and potassium. Get a juicer and sip on fresh fruit and vegetable juices.

Eat mineral-rich foods like seaweeds, leafy greens, beans, nuts and seeds to help replenish depleted minerals like magnesium.

Drink plenty of pure water. Stress causes dehydration and dehydration can promote stress—an endless cycle. Staying hydrated is important for healthy brain function.

Sip green tea and peppermint tea throughout the day to ward off stress. To relax and encourage sleep, drink a cup of chamomile tea in the evening.

Healthy snacks only—fresh fruits and veggies, nuts, and whole grain crackers.

Tip: Start your day with a nibble of fresh parsley and boost serotonin—a "feel good" hormone.

Create a pleasant relaxing atmosphere for meals. Try to eat outside at work. Use mealtime for pleasant conversation and socialize with friends and family. Socialization works wonders for stress, especially for women.

Incorporate proven stress-reducing meditative therapies. Note: You don't have to wait until you think you are having a stress event. These techniques not only help repair damage done over the years, they also help set you up so you are better able to handle stress.

Practice meditation: Recent studies confirm the fact that Prayer and Meditation not only relieves stress, it also promotes a healthy heart and cardiovascular system, and reduces high blood pressure. Just 20 minutes a day can change your life, for the better.

Practice deep breathing exercises: Deep breathing reduces stress, relaxes and even helps you sleep better at night. Bonus: Healthier lungs.

Walk briskly for a half-hour outside every day.

Start your day with a quick stretch and warm-up. A 10-20 minute rejuvenation routine wakes up your lungs, glands, brain and heart, plus boosts the hormone production of serotonin (feel good) and dopamine (focus).

Tip: Be sure to stretch in the morning. Stretch your toes, which helps break up and release toxins as well as boost circulation.

Go outside during short breaks. Raining? Wear your raincoat and take an umbrella. Cold or snowing? Bundle up and get invigorated. Hot? Stay in the shade.

Dance. Put on your favorite music and go for it. Ten minutes will get you to a higher state!

Tip: Take some time off and get yourself into natural surroundings—into the woods, by the water, fields, mountains, etc., for the benefit of fresh air and sunshine! Even just an afternoon can refresh you for days.

Go to bed earlier and wake up earlier. It is believed that the sleep you get before midnight is better quality, so get to bed by 9 or 10.

Drink a cup of chamomile tea with dinner.

Create a peaceful sleep space that is completely dark. This induces the production of the lovely sleep hormone, melatonin.

Listen to relaxing music before bed.

Take a calming bath. Turn on relaxing music. Light candles. Drop in 5 drops of organic lavender essential oil.

One of the fastest ways to affect mood is through the sense of smell. Organic essential oils are potent therapies for reducing stress, encouraging focus, lessening depression, and building energy.

Relaxation: Lavender, chamomile, rosewood and clary sage.

Focus and concentration: Rosemary, thyme, peppermint and sage.

Alertness: Peppermint, juniper, and bergamot.

Creativity: Frankincense, rose germanium, rosemary and sandalwood.

Note: Pregnant women or those with health concerns should discuss using essential oils with a doctor before using. Do not use essential oils directly on your skin without diluting in a carrier oil such as olive or almond, and only use a few drops.

Did you know that what we focus on expands? What do you want to expand in your life? Try to look at obstacles as only bumps in the road. Focus on the positive aspects of your life. Stay away from people or situations that bring you down. Make conscious choices to put yourself in environments that are stimulating and nurturing. Make the best of situations. For example: Stuck in traffic? Look at it as a gift of free time. Listen to music you've been missing, or learn from books or courses on tape.

Tip: Sing often!