Many of the most common long-term stressors—family illness, recovery after injury, career pressures—often arise without warning and simultaneously. Stress management is particularly valuable if your family has a history of hypertension and other forms of heart disease.
Identify the cause.You may find that your stress arises from something that’s easy to correct. A psychologist can help you define and analyze these stressors, and develop action plans for dealing with them.
Monitor your moods. If you feel stressed during the day, write down what caused it along your thoughts and moods. Again, you may find the cause to be less serious than you first thought.
Make time for yourself at least two or three times a week. Even ten minutes a day of “personal time” can help refresh your mental outlook and slow down your body’s stress response systems. Turn off the phone, spend time alone in your room, exercise, or meditate to your favorite music.
Walk away when you’re angry.Before you react, take time to mentally regroup by counting to 10. Then look at the situation again. Walking or other physical activities will also help you work off steam.
Analyze your schedule. Assess your priorities and delegate whatever tasks you can (e.g., order out dinner after a busy day, share household responsibilities). Eliminate tasks that are “shoulds” but not “musts.”
Set reasonable standards for yourself and others. Don’t expect perfection.
Food that help me sleep better!
1] Banana with a Small Glass of Milk: A small banana is best, as they still contain a large amount of sugar. Combining the amino acid tryptophane with carbohydrates as well as calcium and magnesium can help your brain relax and your body nod off to sleep.
2] Small Bowl of Oatmeal of Cereal with Milk: Look for a high fiber cereal and try to avoid oatmeal with a lot of extra sweetner. In addition, calcium has been proven to help the brain use and process tryptophan, while magensium, a natural sedative, acts as an “assistant” to calcium helping it to be absorbed into your system.
3] Small Yogurt with Granola sprinkled on top: This is good because you can get cups of yogurt that are pre-portioned. Make sure that you are not overeating, as too much food puts your digestive system into overdrive, keeping you awake.
4] Half a bagel or a few crackers with peanut butter: You can also substitute peanut butter for an ounce of cheese or a slice of turkey on top.Timing your snack is also important. The effect of tryptophan-rich foods will not take effect for up to 45 minutes.
5] Sliced Apple with a slice of Cheese: You can get creative with the fruit, if you don’t have any apples. Your possibilities are endless when combining tryptophan and carbohydrate-rich foods. Be creative and take note of what works for you.
6] One scrambled Egg with Toast: Make sure you are eating a slice of whole grain toast to keep it healthy. And keep in mind that a healthy lifestyle in general will contribute to good sleep. Regular exercise, healthy meals and a diligent bedtime routine are all improtant for good sleep.
7] Chamomile Tea: This is a bedtime favorite because it has a mild sedating effect.
Diagnosis and treatment in Chinese medicine are based on the theory of yin and yang as well as the five element theory. It practitioners then use a combination of acupuncture, herbs, and qigong exercises to restore health. Learn about each of these aspects of Chinese medicine with the following resources:
1. Acupuncture.com. This website offers everything from acupuncture point locater to Chinese medicine basics.
2. Acupuncture News. Get the latest in news and information from the world of acupuncture. This blog is written by a practicing acupuncturist.
3. Leung’s Chinese Herb News. This expert in Chinese herbs shares his knowledge through this blog.
4. The Qi Life Force & Herbal Medicine. Learn how Chinese medicine uses herbology differently than other holistic approaches to herbal remedies.
5. Qigong Therapy. This overview explains clearly the concepts and methods of qigong therapy as used in Chinese medicine.
6. Yin and Yang in Chinese Medicine. Find out about the balance of yin and yang and how it relates to health.
7. The Five Elements. Learn the five elements and how they relate to the human body as well as to yin and yang.
1 & 2: Digestive System — Eat less processed or junk food, reduce the amount of fat in your diet, step up water intake and opt for cooling things like cucumbers.
3: Liver — Cut out the alcohol, greasy food and dairy. This is the zone where food allergies also show up first, so take a look at your ingredients. Besides all this, do 30 minutes of light exercise every day and get adequate sleep so your liver can rest.
4 & 5: Kidneys — Anything around the eyes (including dark circles) point to dehydration. Drink up!
6: Heart — Check your blood pressure (mine was slightly high) and Vitamin B levels. Decrease the intake of spicy or pungent food, cut down on meat and get more fresh air. Besides this, look into ways to lower cholesterol, like replacing “bad fats” with “good fats” such as Omegas 3 and 6 found in nuts, avocados, fish and flax seed. Also, since this area is chock-full of dilated pores, check that your makeup is not past its expiry date or is skin-clogging.
7 & 8: Kidneys — Again, drink up! And cut down on aerated drinks, coffee and alcohol as these will cause further dehydration.
Zone 9 & 10: Respiratory system — Do you smoke? Have allergies? This is your problem area for both. If neither of these is the issue, don’t let your body overheat, eat more cooling foods, cut down on sugar and get more fresh air. Also keep the body more alkaline by avoiding foods that make the body acidic (meat, dairy, alcohol, caffeine, sugar) and adding more alkalizing foods like green veggies and wheatgrass juice. Another thing that most of forget – dirty cell phones and pillow cases are two of the top acne culprits and this area is what they affect the most!
Zone 11 & 12: Hormones — This is the signature zone for stress and hormonal changes. And while both are sometimes unavoidable, you can decrease their effect by getting adequate sleep, drinking enough water, eating leafy veggies and keeping skin scrupulously clean. Another interesting point: breakouts in this area indicate when you are ovulating (and on which side).
Zone 13: Stomach — Step up the fibre intake, reduce the toxin overload and drink herbal teas to help with digestion.
14: Illness — Zits here can be a sign that your body is fighting bacteria to avoid illness. Give it a break, take a yoga class, take a nap, take time to breathe deeply, drink plenty of water and know that everything always works out!