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Simple Steps for Stress Management

Managing stress is crucial for overall health because chronic stress can disrupt the body’s balance, leading to inflammation, hormone imbalances, digestive issues, and even chronic diseases. By taking a holistic approach to stress management, we can address the root causes of stress and support the body’s natural ability to cope. Here’s your reminder to breathe.

It sounds so rudimentary and simple, doesn’t it? Most of us are unaware that as we go about our days, we are holding our breath and shallow breathing. The more stress we encounter, the more we subconsciously do this. These actions actually send a “stress” signal to our brain, which in turn alerts our adrenal glands to produce more cortisol, one of our stress hormones. If our brain is receiving these messages all day long, day after day, we can get stuck in flight and flight mode. The health ramifications of being in this hyper state of vigilance are numerous. Do any of these sound familiar? Anxiety, panic attacks, fatigue, brain fog, insomnia, irritability, anger, weight gain in the abdominal area or inability to lose weight, inability to stay on task, bloating, or poor digestion to name a few. Not to mention the toll it can take on depleting our microbiome, setting us up for disease.

So, next time you feel the perils of stress trying to grip you, follow these simple steps:

1. Find a quiet place (office, bedroom, bathroom, car).
2. Close your eyes.
3. Think of something in your life that brings you joy. This can be a memory, a favorite pet, a picture, a sunset, etc.
4. Take a deep breath in slowly, belly breathing (pushing your abdomen out) for a count of 5 seconds. Then, breathe out slowly for 5 seconds. Repeat for a minimum of 1 minute. Optimally for 3-5 minutes, twice a day. Many people start and end their days with deep breathing.
5. Scientific Fact: Belly breathing for 1 minute actually sends signals to the vagus nerve that gets us out of fight and flight mode, thereby ceasing the stress response before it has the chance to escalate. For more information on deep breathing and Heart Math (a form of deep breathing that controls heart rate variability) read, Transforming Stress by Doc Childre. Learn more about Health Coaching here: www.funmedidaho.com/health-coaching

Navigating stress can be challenging, but in addition to a healthy lifestyle there are supplements that can lend a hand, too. Here are Amber Warren PA-C’s top three picks for managing stress:

Zenbiome Cope: This supplement contains stress-relieving probiotic strains, energizing B vitamins, and calming herbal extracts.

Cortisol Manager: With a blend of Phosphatidylserine to lower cortisol, Ashwagandha, and L-Theanine, along with Magnolia bark to balance cortisol levels, this supplement can help you find balance during stressful times. (Order here)

Ashwagandha Root: Known for its ability to support adrenal dysfunction, this pure and potent form of Ashwagandha can be a great ally in your stress management routine. (Order here)

You can find these supplements at our wellness counters or conveniently order them online at www.funmedshop.com. Supporting your body during stressful periods is essential, and these supplements can be a valuable addition to your wellness regimen.

Remember, managing stress is not just about surviving; it’s about thriving. So, take a deep breath, nourish your body with whole foods and high quality supplements that support your longevity, and embrace a holistic approach to stress management for a healthier, happier you.

Stream Episode 17: Managing Stress in a Hectic World with Lois Payne, FMI’s Health & Wellness Coach on our podcast, Functional Medicine Foundations
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