What Are The Best Natural Stress Relievers? A Quick Guide
You know what’s common between you and me and basically almost everyone else? It’s stress! It’s that debilitating feeling of overwhelm that seems to creep up on us every once and a while.
Whether stress is because of work, school, family, or just life throwing us a curveball, we all experience it at some point.
But did you know that there are proven ways to manage stress that don’t involve taking any traditional medicine? Yes, you just heard it right. There are some all natural stress relief options that work like magic and also help elevate your overall health and happiness.
So in this blog, let’s get right into it and explore some healthy ways to manage stress. Trust us, you’ll be wanting to try these out!
- Stress is a part of life, and most every individual experiences it. But did you know that stress can affect you in not just one but many many ways? Unfortunately, it can cause crazy things with our body, emotions, and even our behavior in a bad way.
- If you don’t work out the underlying issues that’s causing stress, it could lead to numerous issues like anxiety disorders and other health problems. But ease up and don’t you worry as there are certain natural ways to improve stress!
- To highlight it all, you can reduce stress by getting some exercise, if you’re feeling like it, you can even try some mindfulness-based stress reduction techniques. And maybe even try to add some natural dietary supplements into your daily routine. And lastly, don’t forget to adopt some healthier lifestyle habits to effectively alleviate stress.
- All about stress
- Physical activity for stress relief
- Mindfulness based cognitive therapy for stress reduction
- Cannabinoid-based supplements for alleviating stress
- Lifestyle changes for managing stress
All About Stress
Before we deep dive into the topic, let’s talk about stress.
Picture this: you’re sitting at your desk, trying to finish up a big project before the deadline hits. However, you find yourself overwhelmed with the task at hand. Suddenly, your heart starts racing, then your palms are sweaty, and you have this feeling like you’re about to jump out of your skin.
This is your body is triggering a natural stress response that should be reserved for the sabertooth tiger in the bushes. And theres probably no bushes in your office.
So you see, our body’s physiology and psychology are hardwired to respond to any perceived conflict to what we want. Whenever there’s danger or a challenge, our nervous system goes into action.
The stress response balance
Stress response is like a see-saw: the sympathetic nervous system activates and pushes down 1 side. If it does not turn off, your gonna have a bad time. On the other hand, the parasympathetic nervous system sits on the other side, and if it does not get activated after, your nervous system will be out of balance.
So what now?
That delicate balance between inside our body gets thrown off. And then, our stress hormone levels shoot through the roof. Now, let me tell you, those stress hormones can wreak havoc on our bodies and mental health!
For starters, chronic stress can cause:
- Disrupted sleep patterns and poor sleep quality
- Emotional & behavioral changes
- Anxiety disorders
- Panic attacks
- Cardiovascular complications
- Even cancer!
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the nasty effects of anxiety symptoms caused by stress leading to these anxiety disorders.
Was that scary enough? The good news…
But don’t worry, there are a lot of things we can do to manage stress and promote optimal health. Relaxation techniques, like deep breathing and meditation to name a few, can work wonders in reducing stress levels and easing muscle tension. And let’s not forget how good sleep hygiene and a healthy, balanced diet is essential in busting stress.
Physical Activity for Lowering Stress Hormones
Have you ever had that gnawing feeling when you’re stressed out and can’t seem to shake the feeling off? Well, just so you know, here’s a little secret: getting your body moving can beat this feeling and it may even work more wonders.
Yup, you just heard it right – when you get your heart pumping up, it can actually help take the edge off stress and anxiety, and even boost your mood!
In a classic study by Dr. Miyashita, they found that exercise for just eight weeks was able to improve mental health and significantly promote rebalancing of stress hormones like cortisol.
So, what else is behind physical activity? Well, it is also about our body’s endorphins! Endorphins are these feel-good neurochemicals that get released when we exercise. It makes us feel all warm, fuzzy and good entirely.
Even just walking has been shown to increase the release of happiness endorphins.
But that’s not all, there’s actually more! Physical exercise also helps release other neurochemicals like dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin. They all play a big part in helping our brains function at their very best.
However, you might be thinking, “But I’m not really into exercising” or “I don’t have enough time to exercise.” Well, don’t you worry, because it doesn’t have to be a hardcore workout to bust that stress away.
And the best part? As we work up a sweat and focus on the here and now, we’re actually building a little mental and emotional fortress. Hence, this makes us more resilient and balanced – ready to take on whatever life takes us.
And you know what that means! We’ll then be better equipped to tackle life’s challenges head-on, just like the healthy, vibrant adults we’re meant to be.
Benefits of Low Impact Exercises
I used to think if your not a gym rat pushing significant weight to improve your health and mental state, your not going to make it.
However, a lot studies on low-impact exercises show substantial benefit.
While low impact is great, you gotta be consistent with it.
This mode of physical activity is perfect for those looking to stay active without risking injury or putting too much strain on their joints and muscles.
- Imagine taking a leisurely walk, the simplest and most accessible way to get moving without stressing your joints. Walking becomes part of your daily routine, gradually improving your cardiovascular health, and overall mental well-being. Nobody is too busy not to walk, but if you must, just take the stairs at work, anything to get movement.
- Take it up a notch, and dive into a pool for a refreshing swim. Swimming can be a full-body workout and is the go-to for many people looking to get low-impact exercise that strengthens muscles and improves cardiovascular endurance. The water’s buoyancy supports your body, reducing the risk of injury while giving you greater freedom of movement.
- Cycling, either outdoors or on a stationary bike, effortlessly improving your cardiovascular health and building lower body strength. It’s easy on your joints, and you can adjust the intensity to match your fitness level.
- Lastly, picture yourself immersed in the ancient Chinese practice of Tai Chi, flowing through slow, fluid movements while focusing on deep breathing and mental clarity. This gentle, low-impact exercise improves your balance, flexibility, and soothes your stress and anxiety.
All these low impact exercises as a type of physical activity help boost mood and reduce stress.
You know, there’s this amazing relaxation method called yoga that started way back in ancient India. Now it’s become this worldwide sensation, not just as a form of relaxation but also as an exercise! It’s like this super cool mix of focusing on your breath, finding your zen through meditation, and nailing those body poses, or asanas as they’re called.
There are many different types of yoga, each with its focus and approach to progressive muscle relaxation. Some of the most common types of yoga include:
- Hatha yoga is the most common form of yoga, focusing on physical postures and breathing techniques.
- Vinyasa yoga: This type of yoga is characterized by a flowing sequence of postures synchronized with the breath.
- Ashtanga yoga: Also known as power yoga, this type of yoga is a fast-paced, physically demanding practice that follows a set sequence of postures.
- Bikram yoga: This type of yoga is done in a heated room and involves a series of 26 postures and two breathing exercises.
- Restorative yoga: This type of yoga focuses on relaxation and stress relief, and it involves holding gentle postures for extended periods.
And get this, there are so many awesome benefits to doing yoga! Researchers have found that it can do wonders for your flexibility, balance, strength, and even your posture. But wait, there’s more – it’s also a total game-changer reducing stress and relieving anxiety. Plus, it can also make you feel mentally refreshed. And if that wasn’t enough, there was even a study that showed yoga can help lower blood pressure and be a big boost for your heart health.
Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy for Better Mental Health
I’ve hear a lot about mindfulness approaches, especially since they have received a lot of attention from the mental wellness community.
Mindful living is all about being in the present moment and being engaged in it. What does that actually mean? Focus on the now, and stop giving your mental space to every possible thing that can go wrong later.
When we’re non-judgmental and accepting of our thoughts and emotions, it can really help reduce stress and improve well-being.
When we practice mindfulness, we become more in tune with our bodies, which helps us handle stress better. Plus, it increases self-awareness, reduces anxiety, and helps us empathize with others – hello, better relationships and less conflict!
Now, let’s talk about some mindfulness techniques to incorporate into your daily routine. Trust me, they’ll bring more tranquility and inner harmony to your life.
Ready to calm your mind and body? Breathing techniques are where it’s at! Deep breathing, for example, involves taking slow, deep breaths, holding them for a few seconds, and exhaling slowly. It slows down your heart rate, relieves stress, and helps you sleep better.
In a study with 100 participants, Dr. G. K. Pal found that over 12 weeks deep breathing exercises were able to significant improve cardiovascular parameters of heart rate and blood pressure.
Another one is belly breathing, where you take deep breaths that expand your diaphragm and belly, not just your chest.
Meditation is all about focusing your mind on something specific. It can be your breath or a word or phrase. It’s an awesome way to find inner calm and stillness. Meditation helps you become more aware of your thoughts and emotions, ease stress and anxiety, and improves your overall mood and well-being.
Cannabinoid-Based Supplements for Stress Relief
You know how stress has become such a common issue these days? A lot of people are looking for natural alternatives as a healthy way to handle it instead of just relying on prescription meds. So, we thought to share some info on plant-based cannabinoid supplements that could help with stress relief.
First up is CBD, or cannabidiol. It’s a non-intoxicating compound found in cannabis plants that has become super popular lately. Research has shown that it might help lower anxiety levels and make you feel more relaxed. It does this by interacting with our body’s endocannabinoid system, which has a hand in regulating our mood, sleep, and stress levels.
Next is CBDA, which is actually the acidic form of CBD. You can find it in raw cannabis and it turns into CBD through a process called decarboxylation.
This natural cannabinoid is becoming the popular go to for those in the cannabis space since CBDA is the most potent and powerful cannabinoid on the market!
Targeting the serotonin receptors and promoting stress relief, this is a must for anyone looking for fast relief.
Just a little reminder: always talk to a healthcare professional before trying out any herbal supplements. Everyone’s different, so it’s important to find the best combination of natural remedies that work for you.
Lifestyle Changes to Relieve Stress
We would be amiss if we did not mention how these critical lifestyle components can promote nervous system health and lead to improved mental well being.
First, we’ve got to sleep. The normal person needs AT LEAST 7 hours a night.
But seriously, getting quality sleep is a game-changer for stress management. When you don’t sleep well, you get cranky, tired, and can’t focus – which just makes stress worse. So, aim for 7-9 hours of sleep every night, and try to keep a consistent schedule.
Oh, and don’t forget to cut down on caffeine and screen time before bed.
Caffeine has an average half life of 5 hours. What does that mean? If you drink coffee at 4pm, thats like drinking a half cup at 9pm. Does that sound good to you?
Want to lower your stress levels? Eat better!
Research suggests that nutrient-dense diet helps your body handle daily stress, and who doesn’t want that?
What is nutrient dense food? Meats, eggs, whole fruits, veggies, and milk. If its pre-processed probably not a dense food.
If you don’t eat well, poor diet just adds fuel to the stress fire. Eating right and managing stress make it easier to stay fit and healthy, which in turn, lower stress. Just remember that everyone’s different, so if you need help with a diet plan or managing stress, reach out to a professional.
Last but not least, self-care. Make sure you take time for yourself each day, even if it’s just a few minutes. Doing things you love, like hobbies or other activities, can really lift your mood and keep those stress hormones in check.
Personally, a massage does wonders for your body and mood, but you already knew that.
So, to wrap it up, using natural ways to relieve stress can do wonders for easing your worries and improving your overall health. By trying out these chill-out methods, you’re actively working on lowering both your physical and mental stress, which helps you create a well-rounded, healthy lifestyle.
Just always remember that managing stress is a never-ending journey and not just a one time thing. That means it might take a bit of effort and trial and error to find the strategies that really click with you. But hey, it’s all part of the process, right?
As you start adding these natural tricks to your everyday life, you’re taking big steps toward a more bounce-back-able, stress-free, and enjoyable life. And don’t forget – if you’re chronically stressed or just feel swamped and can’t seem to get a grip, it’s always a good idea to reach out to a family member and better a healthcare professional for some extra help.