Three Key Strategies For Defeating Chronic Stress
Many people living in the modern world are reporting record levels of stress, anxiety, and depression. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, about 40 million adults in the USA alone are suffering from an anxiety disorder. Unfortunately, most of our nervous systems are becoming overburdened with the daily stressors of contemporary life. From the sharp moves in the stock market, to the rapid pace our metros, trains, and airplanes move us around the globe, it is no wonder people around the world are feeling stressed out. If you or a loved one is living with chronic stress that seems to find no outlet, luckily there are many ways to help. In this article, we will detail three powerful ways to keep your stress levels in check in the very hectic 21st century.
Meditation is one of the easiest and most effective ways to deal with stress in modern life. There have been many studies done that show how daily mediation practice actually changes the human brain. In a 2011 study at Harvard University, neuroscientists found that people who meditated daily over a period of eight weeks had a great reduction in the amygdala, which is a part of the brain that produces stress and fear. They also found that meditation increased the hippocampus, a part of the brain that deals with learning and memory. Adding even a simple 15-minute breath meditation to your daily routine can do wonders for your brain.
Try Some Adaptogens and Supplements
Adaptogens are a class of herbs that have been proven to naturally help the body deal with external stressors without releasing high amounts of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol overload, caused by chronic stress, has been leading to a great deal of health problems in contemporary life, such as chronic fatigue, anxiety, and irritable bowel syndrome. Some of the most popular adaptogens people can try include ashwagandha, holy basil, ginseng, rhodiola, and licorice root. There has also been a great deal of evidence to show that supplements that help the protein NRF1 can reduce the impact of stress on the brain.
Regular exercise is also key to combatting stress. People who get regular aerobic and cardio exercise for a few days every week have much lower stress levels than those who do not exercise regularly. In fact, some clinics actually use exercise therapy to treat both anxiety disorders and depression. Since people with chronic stress are often stuck in “fight or flight” mode for most of the day, exercise is a perfect way to vent out all of that pent up stress.