Stress affects us all. Some days it’s worse than others, and over time it takes its toll on how we look, how we feel and how we perform.
Over 90% of adults say they experience stress or anxiety daily and 74% say it’s so great they feel unable to cope¹. Add to this physical stress of training, injury, infection, or environmental toxins. Even certain foods can create stress on our bodily systems.
Some acute stress is helpful. However, chronic stress can be very harmful… even deadly!!
Here are 10 things excessive stress can cause and 15 ways to combat stress…
- Reduced thyroid function
- Weight gain
- Muscle loss
- Gut issues
- Lowered sex drive
- Skin breakouts
- Hair loss
- Low energy
- Irritability and loss of empathy
- Sleep disturbances
So how do we fix this??
Exercise is more effective in reducing stress, anxiety and depression than the top 5 anti-depressant medications².
It might sound counterintuitive, but regular acute physical stress can greatly combat chronic mental stress. In fact, people who exercise regularly are less likely to experience anxiety and depression³.
Exercise releases endorphins and gives you confidence which may help reduce your stress. During exercise or immediately after, be sure to use essential amino acids like AMINO SWITCH™ to accelerate recovery. AMINO SWITCH™ also contains the adaptogen Schisandra which has been shown to increase energy and reduce stress.
You’ve probably heard the term ‘laughter is the best medicine’. Well, when it comes to stress that is completely true.
When you are having fun and laughing it’s hard to feel stressed. Laughing has a natural lowering effect on cortisol (stress hormones) and increases serotonin (happy hormone). It also activates the Vagus nerve which helps transport the serotonin from your gut to your brain.
One study showed laughing can help healing by activating the immune system which could further reduce the effects of physical and emotional stress ⁴. When we are stressed, it lowers our immune system which can result in increased inflammation and reduced recovery.
Try watching comedies or hang out with people who make you laugh and enjoy life. Once you start it can become infectious. ????
There are many natural ingredients that can reduce stress and improve overall energy and health. Here is a list of the top 7 and the supplements you can find them in…
This macro mineral is involved in over 600 bodily processes per day⁵. It is critical for energy metabolism, nervous system relaxation, muscle recovery and so much more.
Nearly 75% of the population are not getting enough magnesium for their daily needs ⁶. Simply supplementing with a magnesium citrate (like that found in ADRENAL SWITCH™ or ALPHA SWITCH™) after exercise or before bed will have a profound benefit on improving your recovery and lowering your cortisol (stress).
Known as the king of herbs, this Ayurvedic medicinal root has been used for centuries to help combat fatigue, reduce stress, and support energy⁷. It is an adaptogen which is a class of compounds that help our mind and body adapt to stress.
Ashwagandha contains a natural compound called Withanolides that have been shown to lower cortisol (stress)⁸ and support natural hormone balance⁷. You will find these natural compounds in ADRENAL SWITCH™ & ALPHA SWITCH™.
This traditional Chinese medicinal berry is used to support qi (energy and life force). It elicits some of its benefits through liver support⁹. It is also an effective adaptogen like ashwagandha and improves the way your body responds to caffeine¹⁰.
Schisandra needs to provide high levels of Schisandrin A¹¹ like that found in AMINO SWITCH™ & ESTRO SWITCH™.
This unique compound found in Alpina galanga has been shown to improve your tolerance to stress¹². It was voted 2019 innovative ingredient of the year and outperforms caffeine in focus and alertness scores without activating the central nervous system.
EnXtra® will often be found in combination with caffeine or coffee (like in POWER SWITCH™ or COFFEE SWITCH™), as it has been shown to enhance your response to caffeine and make it feel cleaner, longer lasting and boost mood more¹³.
The feeling from EnXtra® and caffeine is one of happiness, alertness, and profound focus¹³.
This non-essential amino acid has many benefits including its tonifying effect on the nervous system¹⁴. Glycine also helps support connective tissue recovery, immune response and energy by supporting endogenous (internal) creatine production.
Similar to GABA it has a calming effect if used after exercise or before bed. This is precisely why we’ve added it to ADRENAL SWITCH™. However, Glycine can be consumed before exercise where it can help improve energy and vasodilation also.
L-Theanine is another non-essential amino acid with the ability to calm and increase energy simultaneously¹⁵. L-Theanine is found in green tea and has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety while taking the edge off caffeine (reduce jitters or anxiety), and promoting focus and elevating mood¹⁶.
For this reason, this true nootropic can be found in fat burners like THERMAL SWITCH™, pre-workouts and post workout formulas like ADRENAL SWITCH™. It really is a jack of all trades.
4. GET YOUR MACROS & MICROS RIGHT:
Undereating or eating calorie dense but micronutrient depleted food can have a profound effect on your mental health, stress, and body fat levels.
Keep in mind food can change your mood. Eating food that spikes and then drops your blood sugar levels can leave you exhausted, tired, grumpy, and hungry.
Being in a chronic calorie deficit can increase cortisol (stress hormone), which may slow fat loss, increase muscle loss, increase inflammation and stress.
Make your diet cyclical and have some higher calorie days mixed in with your calorie deficit. Using KETO SWITCH™ between meals or during fasting on your calorie deficit days can reduce muscle loss, support brain function, and prevent hunger.
Like laughter singing also boosts serotonin and activates the Vagus nerve. This has a relaxing effect and has been shown to reduce tension, stress, and anxiety.
In one study music people enjoyed because it bought back happy nostalgic memories and was the most effective at reducing markers of stress¹⁷.
So next time you’re in the car on your way to or from work, belt out a tune you love at the top of your lungs and watch your stress levels drop.
6. MEDITATION & MINDFULNESS:
We probably all know meditation and mindfulness are helpful ways at reducing stress¹⁸. However, some people have difficulty clearing their mind when attempting meditation.
This is where apps like ‘Head Space’ and others can teach you or guide you through the process of meditation which can be life changing.
7. SPEND TIME WITH FRIENDS:
People who live the longest healthiest lives have 2 things in common… Purpose and community. Supporting friends and hanging out with friends and family can be stress reducing.
In fact, one study showed men and women with the least social connections had the greatest levels of anxiety and depression¹⁹.
However, pick your friends carefully and hang around people who support your goals and are genuinely fun to be around.
Cuddling, hugging, kissing and sex can relieve stress by promoting the release of oxytocin and serotonin²⁰. These practices have been shown to lower blood pressure, heart rate and other emotional and physical symptoms of stress.
Chimpanzees also cuddle friends and family who are stressed, and it has the same hormonal response in our closest primate relatives²¹.
9. YOGA & STRETCHING:
Yoga is an ancient Ayurvedic practice that has been shown to lower stress and anxiety for centuries. Studies looking at Yoga’s overall effects have shown it to boost mood and lower stress²².
In fact, it may be as effective at treating depression as some of the current medication²².
Slowing your breathing helps to activate the parasympathetic nervous system. This is the rest, digest, recover and repair system. It is the opposite of the fight or flight sympathetic nervous system.
If you get into a state of anxiety or panic, try ‘Box Breathing’.
- Breathe in through your nose for 4 seconds.
- Hold your breath for 4 seconds.
- Exhale through your mouth for 4 seconds.
- Hold the exhale for 4 seconds.
- Repeat 4 times.
11. GET A PET:
Pets are like cuddling, they help us release oxytocin and serotonin²³. However, sometimes pets are even better because they generally provide unconditional love in return and the relationships are not as complicated as human ones.
Having a pet may also keep you active as you should exercise them daily which is stress relieving. PS: A Tamagotchi doesn’t count. ????
12. GET OUT IN NATURE:
Being in nature surrounded by trees, mountains, lakes, streams or even on the beach listening to the crashing waves is therapeutic and stress relieving.
Part of the stress relieving effect is due to our connection to the planet and part of it is the disconnection from emails, social media and more which can increase stress.
Disconnect at least once a week and exercise in nature (not just in the gym or around the block). Breathe in the fresh air and take in the calming effects being away from the city provides.
There are so many stressors in our lives and multiple ways to help manage or destress. You need to consider what is stressing you the most and make efforts to remove these stressors from your life.
If you practice all the above techniques but continue to expose yourself to a stressful job or relationship, it is like trying to put out a forest fire with a garden hose. It will help but may not prevent all the negative effects of stress.
One of the most obvious symptoms of stress is a lack of energy or enthusiasm. Getting a good night sleep by having ADRENAL SWITCH™ before bed will be the number one place to start.
And when you wake up try replacing your daily brew with COFFEE SWITCH™ for a better you!!
Disclaimer: The above article is merely a guide and is in no way a recommendation or a treatment protocol for any health conditions or diseases. You should always consult with a qualified health care provider before changing your supplement, training, or nutritional strategy. Formulated Supplementary Sports Foods must not be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, anyone consuming prescription medication or children under the age of 15 unless advised by a qualified health care provider.