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Prevention is Better than Cure: Stress Tips

Understanding the extent to which stress has a negative impact on one’s health is crucial. Stress is a manifestation of our ‘fight and flight’ response: a survival mechanism that has been pivotal to our evolution.

In the 21st Century, we are experiencing more CHRONIC STRESS (a perpetual, daily feeling), as opposed to ACUTE STRESS (an incident occurs, we respond, the incident concludes, and balance is restored). The problem today is that most people are unaware that they are stressed. They remain in a perpetual state of constant agitation. Our bodies, however, are unable to distinguish between the non-life-threatening stressors of today (stuck in a traffic jam, 40 things on a to-do list etc.) and the life-threatening flight or flight stressors of thousands of years ago. The stress response is our survival instinct and is the same today as it was then.

Survival takes precedence over ‘rest and digest,’ resulting in the shutdown of secondary bodily functions (such as digestion and immunity) when survival is at stake. May is going to be Stress/Relaxation month and we will be looking in greater depth at this essential part of your health and how to manage it. Stress is often unavoidable but it IS MANAGEABLE. If you change your response to stress this will have a positive impact on your resilience. This in turn will not only improve your health and strengthen your energy reserves but also remove one of the main obstacles to healing and wellness. FIND OUT in MAY why stress causes belly fat.

TT’s Tips:

• Simple breathing has a profound effect on the stress response. Learn more about breathing techniques which can be done anytime, anywhere;

• Practise daily meditation. Even ten minutes a day can make a difference. Meditation apps such as Headspace, Calm and Buddify can help you get started;

• Give yoga a try. Yoga is a mind-body practice, combining controlled breathing and meditation or relaxation that can help reduce stress.

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