Is stress the Big Mac in your life?
We all talk about how busy we are and how stressful life is. But do we really make the connection to what it’s doing to our bodies, our energy and our weight? To be honest with you, I really did not until I went back and thought about what might have caused me to develop a thyroid condition.
The hardest and yet most profound impact on my health was getting a hold of my stress.
We all understand that a certain amount of stress is good and even necessary. But it also alters our body. It’s destructive. And our current stress has out-paced our ability to adapt.
When your body is under stress, the brain drives your pituitary gland to prompt your adrenal gland to release stress hormones: adrenaline and cortisol. Your neural pathways then whip up your immune response. This response sends cascades of stress hormones through our body and gets us ready for the big bad thing that’s coming our way right now.
Your body was designed to deal with stress but here’s the critical difference in the modern world. Nature intended for us to release the stress by physical exertion. If you were really chased by that Saber-Tooth Cat or performed a heroic act like lifting a car, you would release all that energy and your body would return to normal. Your muscles would relax. Oxygen would return to your digestive tract. Blood pressure would normalize. The toxic chemical response would turn off.
But today’s stresses: A pink slip, a toxic work environment, dissatisfaction with our body, a crumbling marriage, financial problems, strife in our home last much longer and are not accompanied by any sort of physical release.
We internalize that stress. We suppress our feelings. We experience arousal without any sort of recovery phase. And we experience one danger-feeling threat over and over again.
There is no elimination diet or protocol that will help you if you are chronically stressed. But the good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way.
Simple practices like mindfulness, managing your self-talk, eliminating toxicity from your life, deep-breathing can bring you relief and release. And to kick out the Big Mac that has been sneaking in and thwarting your efforts.
Once you figure out how you got where you are, it’s easy to start making little changes that produce massive results. Stress can have major implications on your health and happiness, but setting yourself up with the right tools will help you recover faster when life throws curveballs.
On July 9th, my 23 Day Whole Foods program will begin with 4 days of mindfulness to help you begin to understand and unravel stressful thinking. You can get a peak at it here:
How do you feel that stress might be impacting your overall health? Reply with your answer and I’ll give you a personalized tip!
I hope you will follow me on Facebook: Sustainable Nutrition, Mary Brooks, on Instagram @mmbfoodie