Resolving stress

We all have to deal with some level of stress.  Stress can be beneficial and sometimes saves your life, especially if you have to run from a tiger (or other similar situation).  As your amazing body shunts the blood to vital areas so you can flee, or fight or get everything done that you have to do that day, you have extra power to move and act.  However, when we are using our reserves because we have created a pattern of unnecessary stress due to our reactions to daily life, we are literally burning up our life force faster than we can build it back up, just like burning our candle at both ends, or even throwing the candle in the fire.  These patterns can be hard to break once we have become accustom to them, it is hard to see how we could exist any other way.  The problem is that when you are using your blood in your muscles and not to digest and assimilate your food and nutrients, or running instead of restoring your muscles and tendons, your body will literally break down leading to increased injury, illness and a shorter life.

So how do we change these patterns and find balance?  Starting with simple routine can be quite profound.  There are cycles of hormones, like cortisol, going on in your body signaled by light, food, and time.  If you work with these patterns transitions into balance can seem effortless.  

The following recommendations are based on extensive research on biomollecular physiology and have been shown to have measurable effects on health:

•  Keep patterns of waking, sleeping and eating that are in line with the light of day.
•  Eat 3 healthy meals a day that include 7-9 servings of a variety of fruit and vegetables in a variety of colors.

•  Have breakfast between 7-9, within 2 hours of waking.  

•  Include protein and fat, and avoid all processed carbohydrates (flour, sugar, processed oatmeal, or any bread or pastries) especially in the morning.  

•  Have a snack (not refined carbs) around 11 am, and 2 pm.

•  Have dinner before 7 pm and 2 hours before bedtime.

• Practice finding peace in your heart and mind through meditation, prayer, breathing exercises or anything that works for you on a daily basis.  Coherence is a term used to describe the heart and brain connection that can be measured by proven tools such as an EmWave2® so you can evaluate whatever method you choose for effectiveness on your own or in a class.

•  Adaptogens like ginseng, rhodiola and others can help put a cap on the stress response and nutrients like L-Tyrosine, theanine and others can help support the neurotransmitters and hormones that maintain stability in the body and brain.  Always consult your practitioner to get a personalized recommendation plan prior to purchasing these types of supplements as type and timing should be individualized for optimum benefit and safety.

Dietary considerations are important, so here is some more information about the basics in relation to stress:

Every bite of food affects our entire body, it's chemistry and neurons.  Sugar, including processed carbohydrates like bread, quickly raise your glucose level.  Your body has to process that glucose to maintain balance so it quickly absorbs the energy, uses what it can and stores what it can't use now as fat, often flooding the body with insulin to help with the process.  If we eat a diet that often raises our blood sugar quickly (high glycemic index) this system can be overwhelmed leading to insulin resistance, inflammation and a vast array of diseases, not just diabetes.

Fats have gotten a bad name because most of the fats we eat have been destroyed with processing, and chemicals.  The science that originally showed fat was causing disease did not take sugar into account as a variable.  We have just begun to explore the incredible importance and complexity of this vital category of nutrition.  Good fats digest slowly helping us maintain our stable blood sugar preventing inflammation and keeping our mind, body and spirit nourished and stable.  Fats make our cell walls, our brain (which is 60% fat), and our hormones and can be slowly broken down or easily excreted if the energy is not needed, helping us to loose weight.  The idea that calories are calories is antiquated as we clearly understand now that not all food acts the same in the body and different forms of calories (even from the same food, like fruit juice vs. fruit) act completely differently in our body.  Fats like coconut oil are even being used successfully for weight loss, and being prescribed by all sorts of practitioners, allopathic and alternative to prevent and treat disease.  Omega 3's have been shown to help with heart problems, inflammation, ear infections, allergies, and more (references will be added at a later date, please contact me if you have any questions about the research to support any part of this post).

Protein is another crucial building block of our bodies, muscles, immunity and more.  It also stabilizes blood sugar and can be used to help maintain and rebuild our bodies.  Too much protein fat or carbs can cause imbalance.

Not having essential nutrients that we get from eating a wide variety of vegetables can create unnecessary stress on the body.  I recommend a basic nutrient supplement along with a healthy diet for everyone because to ensure adequate nutrient and co-factor intake.  Co factors such as zinc or magnesium are crucial for many processes in the body that have to do with maintaining balance and preventing and recovering from stress.  Different people will benefit from different