Stress Management: 6 Ways to Manage Stress

Managing stress can be a daily battle. Long to-do lists, busy schedules, difficult situations, and unexpected setbacks—we’ve all been there. While everyone feels stress from time to time, sometimes it can have a huge impact on your health. In fact, many people have realized how stress can go beyond just feeling anxious. According to the American Psychological Association, over a quarter of Americans say they’re so stressed that they can’t function. And 7 out of 10 people say that stress has impacted their health within the last month. We generally know how stress affects our mood, but if we neglect our mental health, stress can often become a vicious and unhealthy cycle.  

How stress affects your health

It’s important to know that stress isn’t always a bad thing. Stress is actually a normal reaction of the body. Short-term stress, or acute stress, keeps us alert and motivated to avoid danger, and once we’re out of a stressful event our bodies can return to their normal state. But stress can become a problem if it’s prolonged or repeated. Long-term stress, known as chronic stress, can keep our bodies in a heightened state of alertness with high levels of stress hormones. And when this ongoing stress is left unchecked, it can be detrimental to both your emotional AND physical health. 

We can’t always control the things that cause stress, but there are many different ways that we can keep our stress levels in check! Here are some of the best ways to manage stress that you can incorporate into your diet, lifestyle, and daily schedule. 

6 healthy ways to reduce stress

1: Exercise regularly. 

Physical activity works wonders when it comes to stress because it boosts endorphins (hormones that help relieve pain, reduce stress, and improve your mood), helps clear your mind, AND increases neuroprotective chemicals that have been shown to slow the rate of normal brain cell death and boost brain cell production. Regular exercise also has been proven to reduce cortisol and adrenaline, which are the body’s two main stress hormones. Try adding a brisk walk to your daily routine, or incorporate some aerobic workouts or outdoor activities into your week. You don’t necessarily need to do a yoga class or HIIT workout to reduce stress, either. Any kind of movement can help reduce stress symptoms. 

2: Try stress-reducing foods. 

Yes, your diet can help you manage stress levels. Certain foods can be added to your healthy diet to help reduce cortisol, the primary hormone responsible for stress. For example, foods like beef, chicken, eggs, and fortified whole grains contain B vitamins that help your body metabolize cortisol. You can also try foods with magnesium, like avocados, bananas, broccoli, spinach, and dark chocolate. Magnesium helps relax your body and mind and metabolize cortisol. When it comes to eating for your mood, there are also foods you should avoid if you’re trying to manage stress. Processed foods, high-sugar foods, caffeine, and alcohol can all raise cortisol levels, so they should be enjoyed in moderation. 

3. Practice mindfulness techniques. 

Mindfulness can be defined as simply paying attention to what’s around you in the present moment. Take 10 to 15 minutes out of the day for meditation, prayer, deep breathing exercises, or muscle relaxation techniques. These can help you to calm your mind and body to lower stress. This time can also be used to identify any stressors in your life and remove them if possible. This is the time for you to think about how to set boundaries, say no to additional commitments, avoid stressful situations, and make time for much needed self-care. 

4: Take a stress and mood supplement. 

Cheer Up and Chill Out gummyStress and mood supplements or gummies contain specific nutrients that can help reduce feelings of stress. While not all stress supplements are the same, one of our favorites is Cheer Up & Chill Out, a delicious strawberryflavored gummy for stress relief and improved mood.* These gummies contain ashwagandha, an adaptogenic herb that has been studied and shown to help reduce stress, and clinically tested L-theanine, an amino acid found naturally in dried tea leaves that may help calm feelings of stress.* They also contain essential B vitamins that are important for brain function and saffron to help lift your mood.* Best of all, the ingredients in Cheer Up & Chill Out are rigorously tested for safety and contain no artificial fillers or flavors. 

5: Keep a consistent sleep schedule. 

Don’t skip your zzz’s! Sleep is a powerful tool that helps your body become more resilient to stress. Getting enough sleep (at least 8 hours a day) gives your body time to recharge and recover, which can help lower your stress and improve your mood and cognitive function. So try to keep a consistent sleep schedule by going to bed and waking up around the same time every day. Also, make sure you’re practicing good sleep hygiene like avoiding alcohol and caffeine and powering down your electronic devices an hour before bedtime.

6. Lean on others.  

Remember that you’re not alone when it comes to dealing with stress, and you can seek the help of others for practical help, emotional support, a fresh perspective, or just some company. Take some time to reconnect with friends and loved ones. Spending time with them can do wonders to lower your stress. 

Reclaim your calm

Remember, it’s normal to feel stress every now and then. The key is to make sure that stress doesn’t linger for too long and end up impacting your health. Do the best you can to keep your stress in check, and your body and mood will thank you.  

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. 

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