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Helping women reconnect with their body and achieve well-being

increasing resilience to stress

July 2024

 

Stress

  • Increasing The Body’s Resilience To Stress
  • Reducing Stress
  • Adaptogen Herbs For Stress Management
  • Food For Though – Nutrition For The Nervous System

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Increasing Your Body’s Resilience To Stress

100% of my clients experience stress. Some of them experience chronic stress that leads to compromised immune systems, digestive upset, depression, and anxiety. Stress is the root cause of their conditions.
For others, stress is a result of living with a chronic debilitating condition that reduces the quality of their life.

The body is never in a fixed condition, like a tightrope walker; it is always actively maintaining harmony by adapting to changes in the inner and outer environment. The body adapts to threats to its safety by activating the stress response in the autonomic nervous system.

 

herbal tonic strengthen your nervous system

Threats from the inner environment can manifest as diseases or malnutrition caused by an inadequate diet, famine, or insufficient hydration. Outer sources of threats can be an argument with your boss or partner, listening to the news, or riding the rollercoaster or your car in rush hour.

Allostasis is the process of maintaining harmony through the adaptive change of the organism’s internal environment to meet perceived and anticipated demands. Allostasis load is the wear and tear of the body, associated with chronic stress. Some indications of allostatic load are high blood pressure, increased cortisol, and insulin resistance, as well as low-grade systemic inflammation.

 

Allostasis overload happens when the demands on the nervous system are beyond its adaptive capacity. The nervous system is overwhelmed and cannot bring the body back into harmony.

 

When you are in allostasis overload, you might experience:

Mood disorders – Depression and anxiety can be a result of chronic stress.

Cognitive disorder – Hard time concentrating and memory loss.

Cardiovascular conditions – High blood pressure and heart disease.

Immune system dysregulation: Susceptibility to infectious disease or that cold that you couldn’t shake off all winter and autoimmune disease.

Hormonal imbalances – Insulin resistance, weight gain, and diabetes.

 

An interesting factor about allostatic overload is that mindset plays an important role. How you view your life circumstances affects your perceived stress level. Two people might live in the same conditions, but one might find these conditions stressful, and the other might not.

Your mindset is partly genetic and partly relies on your past experiences. A person who experienced trauma in his life most likely will have less resilience to stress than a person with no history of trauma.

 

Tips for raising your resilience to stress:

Diet—A malnourished body is a body under stress. A nutrient-dense diet and drinking enough fluids will increase your resistance to stress.

Movement—Regular physical activity appropriate to your fitness level and health statutes reduces stress. On the other hand, movement that doesn’t fit your fitness level or your health status might be a source of stress.

Sleep – getting a good night’s sleep is essential for a healthy nervous system.

Meditation – Mindfulness and breathing exercises can help reduce stress.

Community – Building on the support of a family and a community reduces stress.

 

Herbs that increase your resilience to stress:

Nervines are herbs that support the nervous system. Nervine tonics, or nervine Trophorestoratives, are herbs that increase the body’s resilience to stress.

You might want to think about herbal tonics in the same way you think about going to the gym to tone and strengthen your muscles. Nervine tonics nourish the nerves and increase your capacity to deal with stress.

 

Milky oats

Milky oats are made from the same plant as breakfast cereal oats but at a different stage of their growth cycle. The seeds are harvested before they are fully ripe, during a short period when they exude a milky latex compound, after which they are named.

 Milky oats are for people who are burned out, have trouble focusing, have scattered minds, or are overwhelmed. They have a lot of “what ifs” that stress them out, and they think negatively in loops. The mind is ungrounded and not connected to the heart and body. 

Milky oats are for overdriven workaholics who push themselves too hard. It is for people who tend to burn the candle on both ends. 

 Seventeen years ago, when I moved across the ocean to an intentional community sharing my home with five people with disability, I was overwhelmed. The caregiver I saw at the time prescribed milky oats, which was very effective for supporting my nervous system as I had to bridge a double culture shock for myself and my kids. To this day, milky oats are my first go-to herb for increasing resilience to stress.

Stress plays a crucial role in health. Your resilience to stress is partially genetic and partially dependent on your life’s biography. Cultivating an attitude of gratitude, eating well, sleeping well, moving, engaging in community, and using herbal tonics increase your nervous system’s capacity to deal with the challenges of everyday modern life.

If stress is a challenge, I invite you to join the Stress Gut & The Immune System program.
If you are curious to learn more or need help designing a lifestyle that will optimize your well-being, book a 20-minute free consultation with me. 

 

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Disclaimer: This document is for educational and informational purposes only and solely as a self-help tool for your own use. I am not providing medical, psychological, or nutrition therapy advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your own medical practitioner. Always seek the advice of your own medical practitioner and/or mental health provider about your specific health situation. You can view my full disclaimer here.
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