Today I would welcome guest blogger Steven Hoffman to Mom Home Guide!
Getting the kids up, fed and dressed, and then making lunches and getting your children off to school can feel like a marathon. Then many of us go to work. After work, we pick up our kids, get them to and from activities and make a nutritious, home cooked meal.
After helping the kids with homework, we crawl into bed where we lie wide awake from the stress hormones coursing through our bodies. Weekends are filled with parties, family functions and DIY projects like that fabulous porch or garden we’ve seen on TV or Pinterest.
Any of this sound familiar? I feel your pain. My wife and I decided we wanted one of us to be around for the kids. Since my schedule is flexible as an acupuncturist, many of these duties fall to me. (Although I must give my wife my due –she’s a dynamo!) So, what does all this stress do, and what can we do about it? Read on!
Stress and Your Body
The effects of stress on your body are far reaching and rather scary. Everything from insomnia to headaches, depression, higher blood pressure, weight gain, increased risk of diabetes, digestive problems, decreased libido, infertility, irregular menstrual cycles and even immune problems can be attributed to the effects of stress. Look at this infographic for more information.
We often wear our stress as a badge of honor in this country, almost trying to outdo one another in the amount we can handle. Seeing the very real consequences that stress can have on your health, maybe we should be looking for ways to reduce our stress and find ways to cope with the inevitable stress that we encounter. Here are some good places to start.
4 Stress-Relieving Aids
Diet: Stress eating often causes us to reach for the wrong foods and too much food. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables, healthy fats and a small amount of complex carbohydrates is a good place to start. An effortless way to accomplish this is to shop the perimeter of your supermarket. STAY OUT OF THE AISLES. The “food” in the aisles has often been processed to the point that it hardly resembles the actual food that it started out being. Of course, eliminating fast foods and processed foods is also crucial. If most people would take this simple step, about 90% of illnesses would be eliminated.
Exercise: This is a major key to dealing with stress. Exercise will flush stress hormones from the body along with toxins. Exercise causes the body to produce endorphins and will help with everything from sleep to proper eating. Mindfulness exercises like yoga and tai chi are especially effective at dealing with stress. I’m not suggesting that you go to the gym and beat yourself to the point of exhaustion. Yoga and walking are often enough for most people to reduce the harmful effects of stress.
Meditation: Meditation has shown in clinical trials to drastically reduce the amount of stress hormones in the body. Studies have shown that meditation can alter the brain itself. This means that not only do you benefit while you are doing meditation but the effects are lasting! This is an investment in your health and the only real cost is time. An invaluable quantity for some but then again, so is your health.
Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine: Of course, I’m an acupuncturist, you didn’t think I was going to skip this, did you! Acupuncture has been clinically proven to lower stress markers. It also causes the body to release endorphins and improves circulation — which helps the body heal. Heart rates lower, blood pressure lowers and muscles relax. We often see patients quickly go in to a deep stage of sleep, and this is the only time that the body is healing itself from all of the stresses (including stress) that are put on it each and every day.
Some of these things you can undertake yourself and you can find remarkable improvement with those alone. But if you find yourself with a recurring problem or something that just will not go away, stress may be causing or contributing to it and you may need some help. Acupuncture excels in these cases, so don’t wait another minute, get the help you need.
— Steven Hoffman, L.Ac., Dipl. OM
Click here to view the clip from Steven’s recent television interview and link to the entire interview! https://youtu.be/_Wt2qhHPObQ
Visit his website at www.pa-om.com
For specials, news and powerful health related information, remember to “like” the Princeton Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Facebook page at www.facebook.com/