The Stress Issue
What is stress?
Pressure or tension exerted on a material object.
A state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances.
Modern life is full of stressors that hit us literally 24/7. Stress lowers your mood, mindset, motivation, and your mojo.
The way we are wired, our bodies respond to whatever situation/environment we find ourselves in. This is called ‘proprioception’, meaning in a calm environment we stay calm; in a stimulating environment we match that energy, too.
There are also internal stressors caused by health imbalances – digestive issues or viruses.
Here are some interesting symptoms of stress that you may not realize, and ways to begin combating it.
1. Poor Sleep
The stress hormone – cortisol – naturally rises early in the day then starts to wane down mid to late afternoon so we can rise with the sun and rest when it’s dark. Stressful situations (work, kids, traffic, etc.) can get us ramped up when we should be winding down causing our cortisol levels to stay elevated. Cortisol will also spike again after 10pm, which gives us that false ‘second wind’ when we find ourselves staying up way too late.
What you can do:
Creating morning & evening rituals are amazing at helping you reduce stress by giving you structure and specific steps to take so you can easily ramp up or wind down your days.
Exercise first thing in the morning. This helps to balance blood sugar, cortisol levels and revs up your energy for the day, and will also help you wind down at bedtime.
Once you are home from work/school, strive to put your devices down and focus on de-stimulating your environment. If you do need to use your devices, using blue light blocking glasses can help limit stimulation.
Reduce or eliminate alcohol. Alcohol may help you fall asleep faster, but that doesn’t last long – with you typically waking up a few short hours later thereby breaking your sleep. Drinking alcohol also limits your REM sleep, which is the most restorative time of sleep. It really doesn’t do your body any favors!
Strive to have dinner 3-4 hours before bedtime. Eating too close to sleep forces your body to spend energy on digestion instead of rejuvenation while you sleep. Between 10pm-2am while asleep, this is the time your body is cleaning your systems and detoxifying. This is crucial for good health and rest. Also, eating too close to bed time, especially a larger meal, is the main cause of heartburn, indigestion and acid reflux. Allowing 3-4 hours between dinner and bed will allow your stomach to empty fully and help eliminate poor sleep and other issues.
2. Digestive issues
Have you ever experienced bloating after meals? 🙋🏻♀️ One of the causes is eating while stressed. Why? Because when we are under stress our body shuts down digestion, eating at this time causes bloating and other issues. In addition, our modern diet lacks in nutrition and essential vitamins and minerals.
What you can do:
Strive to eat easy to digest foods when under stress – smoothies are a good choice as they will hydrate and provide targeted nutrition when you need it most.
Increase your fruits and veggies intake. These nutritious foods give our bodies the essential nutrition to help all of your systems run smoothly. Limiting ultra process foods (you know who you are!) will go a long way to balancing your hormones, blood sugar, blood pressure and more.
Drink plenty of water. Hydration is key for pretty much everything we are. Staying hydrated clears brain fog, curbs hunger, detoxifies, helps with elimination, among other things. Electrolyte balance is crucial – be careful of using inferior water ‘additives’ to get your electrolytes in. Not all supplements are created equal. You can create your own natural electrolyte drink by using lemon or lime juice in your water, with a pinch of sea salt. The juice provides potassium and the salt provides sodium and necessary minerals, which is part of the electrolytes our bodies need. I love lime juice with cold water, and lemon juice with warm water.
3. Skin Issues
I see this everyday in my practice. Our skin is an amazing reflection of what’s happening inside of our bodies. Chronic stress wreaks havoc everywhere, and some of the most common issues I see presenting on stressed skin are:
a. Breakouts and acne
b. Dry patches
c. Inflammatory issues like psoriasis, rosacea and eczema
d. Hair loss
What you can do:
In addition to the great tips above – getting more quality sleep, exercise, eating more nutritious foods, staying hydrated, your skincare regimen matters. Using products full of fillers, fragrances, and low amounts of true active ingredients can leave your skin imbalanced and adds to the inflammation. Also, using products that aren’t designed for your specific skin can also cause issues – and when we are stressed everything seems worse.
If it’s been a while, or you have not yet done a skincare consultation or treatment to know what’s best for YOUR skin – I got you. I have a First Time Facial option that includes a full 30m consultation, plus FREE skincare – it’s a win-win. Even if it’s not your first time, but just want a refresher on what’s best for your skin, you can book this service.
Managing our stress is more important than ever. My mission is to empower you to take better care of you, your skin, and your life.
Invest in yourself…makeover your life.
It’s time to vibrate higher. 💜