“The first thing in any stress-reduction program is to exercise. It is a proven stress-reliever,”
The next step to a low stress holiday season is a healthy diet. A healthy diet will help keep your energy levels high and keep your body from feeling overwhelmed. One thing you should include in your regular diet is plenty of Vitamin C, found in abundance in bell peppers, strawberries, broccoli, pineapple and oranges. Vitamin C can also help reduce your cortisol levels. One study published in the journal Psychopharmacology recruited 120 volunteers who were subjected to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST). A test used to measure psychological stress. Those who took vitamin C had lower blood pressure, less subjective stress, and decreased cortisol levels than the placebo group. Another nutrient to include in your daily diet is Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and nuts. This does not mean you have to eat fish every day but you can find Omega-3 fatty acids in pill form at any local health food store like Harvest House in Concord or Natural Life Foods in Pleasant Hill. One research study found that as little as 7-8 grams of fish oil a day can effectively reduce high cortisol levels due to mental stress.
Last but not least remember to take some time out of your day to relax, breath deep, and empty your mind of worry. “Deep breathing is very effective at calming you down and lowering your heart rate and blood pressure,” says Dornier. Always remember to take the time to treat your body right and you will be rewarded many times over.
East Bay residents can find out more stress-relieving strategies and weight loss information at http://www.transformfxfitness.com
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Anna Dornier is the owner and founder of Transform FX Fitness in Concord, CA. She's been helping busy parents and working professionals achieve their fitness goals and maintain their progress through time-saving weight loss tips and strategies.