April is Stress Awareness Month
Since 1992, April has been recognized as Stress Awareness Month. This year, more than any other time, it is so important for us to learn to cope with our stress and find healthy ways to deal with it.
The American Institution of Stress states,
“The most common explanation is a physical, mental,
or emotional strain or tension.”
Here are a few tips they suggest to help overcome issues we can not change:
- Recognize when you don’t have control, and let it go.
- Avoid getting anxious about situations that you cannot change.
- Take control of your reactions and focus your mind on something that makes you feel calm and in control.
- Develop a vision for healthy living, wellness, and personal growth, and set realistic goals to help you realize your vision.
The CDC has several tips for coping with stress:
- Yoga and meditation
- Focus on healthy eating
- Make sure you get enough good sleep
- Find time for hobbies or other enjoyable activities
- Figure out what works for YOU!
As we see a light at the end of this pandemic tunnel, let’s take a look at a few ways to support and maintain a healthy and positive life.
Yoga and Meditation
The practice of yoga and meditation benefits the physical, mental and spiritual areas of our lives. With yoga, you can improve your strength, balance, and flexibility. It has been known to relieve back pain, ease arthritis symptoms, and benefit heart health. A yoga practice can also help you relax, help manage stress, and help you sleep better. Benefits of meditation include gaining a new perspective on stressful situations, focusing on the present, and reducing negative emotions.
Exercise to Reduce Stress
Exercise definitely has some stress-busting benefits. It increases your endorphins (those feel-good neurotransmitters), which help you deal with stress and reduce pain.
Try a few of these suggestions to get moving:
- Brisk walking
- even Spring cleaning!
There are so many ways to help manage stress and one of them includes what you eat. We couldn’t possibly list all the foods that help fight stress, but here’s a few suggestions…
- Complex Carbs: Carbs tell the brain to make more serotonin. Complex carbs take longer to digest and help stabilize blood sugar levels. Try whole grain breads, pastas and breakfast cereals, including oatmeal.
- Oranges: Oranges make the list because they provide vitamin C. Studies suggest that vitamin C can curb levels of stress hormones while strengthening the immune system.
- Spinach: High in magnesium, spinach may help with headaches and fatigue which can compound the effects of stress. Don’t like spinach? Try other leafy greens or cooked soybeans or salmon, which are all high in magnesium.
- Avocados: Potassium helps lower high blood pressure and half an avo has more than a medium-sized banana!
- Raw Veggies: Crunchy raw vegetables can help ease stress in a purely mechanical way. Munching celery or carrot sticks helps release a clenched jaw, and that can ward off tension.
- Herbal Supplements: One of the best herbal supplements for fighting stress is St. Johns’s wort. Studies have shown benefits on mild to moderate depression.
stress fighting items at the Co-op!
From all of us here at the Morrisville Food Co-op, we are honored to be serving our community during this time and
thank you for supporting your local food coop!