Stress is one of the few things that can completely and single-handedly ruin your diet, wellness, and happiness. Stress is also one of the most common phenomena in the US, with around 75% of people saying they deal with “a great amount of stress.” It can lead to looking and feeling older, weight gain, hair loss, and many other physical and psychological problems.
Sure, stress can increase productivity… for a while. Soon after the initial energy burst and sense of urgency wears off, your body starts to pay the price. According to the American Institute of Stress there are a number of physical and emotional disorders that can be linked to high levels of stress, including:
- Heart attacks
If you are like most people, you need an outlet for your stress. But what are the best options? Hypnosis? Self help seminars? Drugs? There is a much better way to keep a handle on stress (and it’s free). Try a dose of exercise!
When I feel especially stressed out I like to go for a longer run or harder workout than I normally would. I find that this helps me to focus, get higher quality sleep at night, and feel better about myself in general. I went through a period last year where I was super stressed out. I made terrible choices on what I was eating and I had stopped working out. Naturally, I thought I was too busy to care about these things because of my high levels of stress, but I noticed that I was just spiraling deeper and deeper into these bad habits. It only took a few long runs and diet changes to get me to remember what I had been missing and get me back on the right track.
A well balanced diet is also a major part of handling your stress. Make sure you are consuming the correct levels of vitamins and protein. Antioxidant rich foods are also highly recommended. Try to look for products containing resveratrol, or some other free radical crushing supplement. Follow these health tips and you will be on your way to healthier, stress free living.