We all deal with stress every day, and we know how much better off we would be — both physically and mentally — if we could only get it under control. There is no doubt chronic emotional stress impacts our body and health in a similar way as a bad diet or lack of exercise. It has been suggested that almost all common health conditions are related to stress.
WHAT IS STRESS
Stress can be defined as a state of mental or emotional tension resulting from challenging or adverse circumstances. It is an undesirable emotional experience accompanied by harmful biochemical, physiological and behavioural changes that negatively affect our organism and health. Stress is our body’s response to mental or emotional pressure and it is also synonymous or at least closely related to irritability, nervousness, frustration, bad mood, anxiety, worry, fear, hatred, and other negative emotions.
WHAT ARE THE IMMEDIATE EFFECTS OF STRESS?
As soon as we experience negative emotions related to stress our hypothalamus sends signals to pituitary gland which secrets a hormone called ACTH which stimulates adrenal glands to release stress hormones cortisol, adrenaline (also called epinephrine) and norepinephrine.
Our body reacts to stress by boosting the production of stress hormones to increase blood sugar levels, blood pressure, heart rate, blood circulation to oxygenate and energise muscles and stimulate brain in order to improve our ability to respond to a dangerous or challenging situation.
If such state takes place only occasionally it won’t cause much harm. Unfortunately, the problem is that most of us experience it on a regular basis.
WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS ARE ASSOCIATED WITH CHRONIC STRESS?
There is no doubt chronic emotional stress impacts our body and health in a similar way as bad diet or lack of exercise.
Today we know that almost all common health conditions are related to stress. Chronic uncontrolled stress contributes to many health problems including hormonal imbalance, adrenal fatigue, digestive disorders, diabetes, obesity, mental disorders, or weakened immune system and related conditions including cancer and very common autoimmune diseases.
Stress speeds up the ageing process by increasing the production of harmful free radicals that damage our cells.
Stress contributes to heart attacks and strokes as it increases blood pressure and damages blood vessel linings allowing bad cholesterol and triglycerides to accumulate in those damaged areas, thus leading to heart attacks and strokes.
Stress affects the blood-brain barrier which normally prevents many unwelcome substances that enter our body from reaching and affecting the brain. Researchers found that stress increased the permeability of the blood-brain barrier. As a result, due to the damaged blood-brain barrier, some chemicals that normally are not allowed to enter the brain are now able to do it.
Chronic stress can lead to a variety of digestive problems, including bloating, stomach cramps, gastric ulcers, constipation or diarrhoea. It also contributes to acid reflux and spastic colon, irritable bowel syndrome, and inflammatory bowel disease.
IS IT TRUE THAT CHRONIC STRESS PROMOTES OBESITY?
Exposure to chronic psychological stress has been associated with metabolic syndrome and obesity because stress increases production of the hormone cortisol, which when combined with access to calorie-dense foods, promotes the development of obesity.
Another physiological reason why stress contributes to obesity is the molecule NPY (Neuropeptide Y) which is released by the body as a result of stress and negative emotions. Whenever NPY is released it causes fat cells to multiply and grow bigger! Cortisol also raises our blood sugar level which is required for fast energy. This, in turn, stimulates insulin release which increases appetite encouraging us to supply the body with more carbohydrates (sugar) and fat used for the fight or flight response. The problem however is that usually people struggling with overweight or obesity live a sedentary lifestyle and don’t need such energy more sugar and fat. Thus, cortisol ends up causing the body to refuel after stress even though it doesn’t need it. As a result, this surplus of glucose (sugar) is converted into fat.
In addition, by elevating cortisol stress stimulates growth of the fat cells, particularly in the abdominal area. And the more fat in your body the more leptin resistance and inflammation you experience. Too much cortisol produced by stress may lead also to insomnia, tendencies to wake up too early, and other sleeping problems. And, if you don’t sleep properly and long enough you won’t be able to control your appetite because due to insomnia your stomach will release more ghrelin and you will have tendency to develop leptin resistance too.
Due to cortisol and the release of insulin stress also stimulates you to develop appetite for quick energy type foods (high in refined sugar) such as sweets, chocolate, ice cream, sweet soft drinks, etc.
Apart from that, because stress leads to imbalance between potassium and sodium which is caused by another stress hormone – adrenalin, you may also be tempted to eat chips and other salty foods which are high in fat too.
Among animals most prone to overeating are probably racehorses. I was told that if they are allowed to eat as much food as they want they would keep on eating almost all the time! The obvious reason of their huge appetite and gluttony is the leptin resistance caused by frequent and powerful stress they experience especially during races. As a result leptin is not able to send signals to their brain cells to prevent them from overeating thus causing these poor and abused by selfish owners and horse racing gamblers animals to become constantly hungry.
DOES CHRONIC STRESS LEAD TO NUTRITIONAL DEFICIENCIES?
Chronic stress robes our bodies of vitamins and minerals especially due to the fact that it stimulates release of cortisol (one of the stress hormones), thus leading to a surplus of the glutamate which in turn generates harmful free radicals that damage cell membranes, DNA, and mitochondria (cell’s power stations) in cells all over the body including brain cells and immune cells.
Many vitamins and minerals such as B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, selenium, and magnesium work also as antioxidants that our body uses to fight with generated by stress free radicals and to prevent them from their damaging effect on our cells. Since these antioxidants are constantly used to cope with radicals their levels are often not high enough to support various vital body functions.
In the same way stress depletes other powerful antioxidants in our body including glutathione, SOD (superoxide dismutase), coenzyme Q10, or alpha lipoic acid.
Chronic stress, therefore, is very destructive as deficiency of mentioned above antioxidants contributes to all kinds of health problems including fatigue, increased rate of ageing process, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, poor brain and nervous system function, neurological damage, inflammations, or weakened immunity which in turn increases risk of cancer, frequent infections, allergies or various autoimmune diseases.
In addition, many people under stress have tendencies to use stimulants such as alcohol and caffeinated products or consume comfort foods that are high in sugar and contain refined white flower. In this indirect way stress leads to even more sever deficiency of vital vitamins and minerals.
WHAT SIGNS MAY ACCOMPANY THOSE WHO EXPERIENCE CHRONIC STRESS?
Signs of uncontrolled chronic stress are mostly the result of a condition known as adrenal fatigue which is the consequence of our inability to cope with stressful situations we experience on a daily basis. Every time we get irritated, stressed, afraid, and worried, or whenever we experience a physical trauma (fighting, accidents, etc.) our walnut-sized adrenal glands (found on top of the kidneys) start making stress hormones (Cortisol, Adrenaline and Noradrenaline). The problem is that since our adrenal glands have to make stress hormones so often they finally get exhausted and are unable to produce enough of these hormones during stressful situations and also in between them, thus triggering various unpleasant symptoms including chronic fatigue, struggling to get out of bed in the mornings, lack of motivation and enthusiasm, poor memory, problems with concentration, insomnia, feelings of apathy, irritability, anxiety, depression, hypoglycaemia, hair loss, sugar craving, weight gain, decreased sex drive, insulin resistance, etc.
WHAT ARE THE FACTORS THAT REDUCE OUR ABILITY TO CONTROL STRESS?
The following factors may contribute to our inability to control stress: Lack of probiotic bacteria in our intestines, unhealthy refined diet, frequent use of stimulants, and anything that leads to the deficiency of B vitamins, magnesium, zinc, vitamin D, selenium, iodine, and other nutrients without which our brain and nervous system can’t function properly causing us to overreact to various stressors.
Also, sedentary lifestyle (lack of exercise), insufficient sunlight exposures, lack of sleep, deficiency of amino acid tryptophan, lack of B vitamins, magnesium and zinc make it impossible for our body to produce enough serotonin a hormonal substance and neurotransmitter known as the strongest antidepressant and feel-good hormone which significantly increases our ability to cope with stress.
We can’t control stress also due to the deficiency of S-adenosyl-L-methionine (SAM-e) – a naturally-occurring chemical component present in all cells of the body where it is essential in more than 200 metabolic pathways. Its deficiency causes depression.
Arachidonic acid in our diet produces inflammatory compounds which may inflame our brain. Meat-eaters consume 10 times as much arachidonic acid than the vegetarians, as arachidonic acid is not found in plants!
Wow! There are so many factors that contribute to depression that it is scary and stressful to know all this, isn’t it!!!
STRESS DRUGS AND THEIR SIDE EFFECTS
There is no specific medication for treating stress. Instead, physicians prescribe medications to address certain stress-related problems anxiety or depression. And therefore, for people suffering from symptoms of chronic stress they prescribe sedatives (antianxiety drugs), antidepressants, or sometimes even beta-blockers which block the effects of epinephrine (adrenaline) reducing blood pressure.
Unfortunately, the medications that are useful for stress relief are usually also addictive and may lead to nutritional deficiencies and serious behavioural and health problems.
Sedative medications (Antianxiety) slow down or inhibit the activity of the central nervous system (CNS: comprising the brain and spinal cord), causing a sense of relaxation, reduced anxiety and tension, sleepiness, and slowed breathing.
Benzodiazepines, barbiturates and alcohol produce their calming effects by activating neurotransmitter in the brain called GABA an inhibitory neurotransmitter that slows down brain activity producing a calming effect.
Alcohol also stimulates GABA (Gamma Amino Butyric Acid) that is why most people feel relaxed when they drink alcohol, although it is not always the same as I know individuals who get worse and even aggressive or cry all the time when they get drunk. Fortunately, there are better and safe ways to accomplish the same effect. There are some probiotic bacteria found, for instance, in MoodProbio that stimulate GABA receptors in the GI tract and increase levels of this anti-stress and antidepressant hormone without side effects of alcohol and drugs.
SSRIs and similar drugs slow down the process of reuptake so that Serotonin stays in the synapse longer. Increased Serotonin levels can, in part, improve a person’s mood and decrease anxious feelings. SSRI medications are not addictive in the classical sense, but there are negative side effects associated with their use, such as nausea, dizziness, dry mouth, sleep disturbances and a wide range of sexual arousal and climax problems.
Beta-blockers are medications that are typically used to control high blood pressure and treat certain heart problems. For some people, these medications can decrease stress symptoms. Beta-blockers such as Inderal (propranolol) and Tenormin (atenolol) block the action of the neurotransmitter and hormone norepinephrine in the arteries and the heart muscle, causing arteries to widen, slowing the action of the heart, and decreasing the force of contraction. The most common negative side effects of beta-blockers are cold hands and feet, tiredness and sleep disturbance (i.e., nightmares). Less common side effects of beta-blocker use include impotence, dizziness, wheezing, digestive tract problems, skin rashes and dry eyes.
WHAT DIETARY AND LIFESTYLE PROGRAMME COULD BE RECOMMENDED TO SUPPORT OUR ABILITY TO CONTROL STRESS MORE EFFECTIVELY?
In order to improve our abilities to control stress the following recommendations are beneficial:
– Boost brain serotonin levels by regular daily outdoor exercises and increasing consumption of foods high in tryptophan, especially organic non-GMO Tofu, which is by far the highest source of this amino acid.
– Make sure you have some complex carbohydrates every day in the form of fresh and dried fruits, bananas, etc. as they increase the ability of tryptophan to pass blood/brain barrier to produce serotonin.
– Go to sleep as early as possible. Try to sleep at least seven or eight hours a day.
– Avoid artificial sweeteners, foods with high glucose/fructose syrup (HFCS), refined sugar and other refined carbohydrates such as white flour products and white rice. Instead of harmful sweeteners, you can use xylitol, stevia or organic raw honey in moderation.
– Don’t use stimulants such as caffeine products or alcohol. To increase energy use chlorella, spirulina, B vitamins, ginseng or other harmless energy boosters.
– Research shows that those who take care of their spiritual condition by reading right spiritual literature and regular meditation such as daily prayers in the form of heartfelt conversations with God as well as people who managed to find a community of supportive, like-minded people find noticeable relief from stress. However, studies also clearly show that spirituality is effective only for those who believe in a loving, carrying and saving God. On the other hand, believing in a severe, expecting, and punitive God significantly reduces the ability to cope with stress and increases the risk of various mental health problems, depression or anxiety.
WHAT SUPPLEMENTS CAN HELP US TO COPE WITH CHRONIC STRESS?
Since antidepressants and anti-stress medications are not very effective and they cause many bad side effects it is important to know what nutritional supplements can be recommended as they are often more effective than drugs, and what is so important, they are free from harmful side effects.
– Magnesium enables us to control stress and is vital in our body for the proper functioning of the nervous system and brain, promoting good mood and improving our sleep patterns. Increased magnesium intake helps to fall asleep faster and to stay asleep until we are fully rested. Magnesium is involved in the synthesis and function of GABA and serotonin, neurotransmitters known to be most effective in calming the brain and promoting relaxation. Since magnesium deficiency is rampant today due to soil depletion, refined diet, use of stimulants, stress, and other factors, take 150-300 mg of good magnesium such as citrate 1-2 times a day.
– A 2011 study, published in Human Psychopharmacology, found that supplementing with high-dose B vitamins helped participants reduce the irritability and low mood associated with work-related stress.
A 2011 study, published in Human Psychopharmacology, found that supplementing with a high-dose B vitamins helped participants reduce the irritability and low mood associated with work-related stress.
In one study, 11 people with treatment-resistant depression took 6 grams of Inositol every day for four weeks, and nine of them experienced major improvements in their mood. Another study involved depressed patients taking 12 grams of inositol every day for four weeks. Researchers found that these patients experienced significantly greater improvements in their depression compared to the patients who took a placebo.
Panic attacks and anxiety due to Iron deficiency are common especially in people who drink coffee after meals are deficient in vitamin C and in women with heavy menstruation. Panic attacks can be triggered by hypoglycaemia and food allergies as well. Caffeine itself when overdosed can also bring on an attack. A study showed Iron supplementation resulted in a 25-percent improvement in stress and depression in mothers who were previously iron deficient
If you suffer from depression, apart from B complex it might be a good idea to take 500mg of Niacin (B3) after breakfast starting from low dosages (50mg a day) and gradually increasing to 500mg or more per day. With regards to stress control, it is important to get the proper form of vitamin B3. Nicotinic acid (causes flushing – skin redness), powerful antidepressant and lowers cholesterol. Nicotinamide (or Niacinamide), on the other hand, is no-flush, but has no effect on cholesterol levels, and is less effective in inducing relaxation and calming effects. Read more about Niacin >
– Increase serotonin levels by taking 5HTP (most bioavailable form of tryptophan), vitamin B6, B1, B3 (Niacin), folic acid, magnesium, zinc as all of them are required to produce this precious happy hormone.
Please keep in mind that, Tryptophan (from food or supplements) requires a lot of Vitamin B3 (or Niacinamide) in the body to be converted to 5HTP and therefore when the liver tries to convert tryptophan to 5htp in the absence of adequate levels of Vitamin B3, it will use tryptophan to manufacture Vitamin B3 and it uses 60mg of tryptophan to produce the only 1mg of Vitamin B3, thus leading to tryptophan and serotonin deficiency!!! That is why if L-tryptophan is used instead of 5HTP it should be taken with at least 100mg of B3.
Unlike 5-HTP, L-tryptophan must be taken on an empty stomach between 3 – 4 pm and again at bedtime with a fruit juice (or a smoothie). It also shouldn’t be taken with meals high in protein as other amino acids hinder the formation of serotonin from L-tryptophan. Also, complex carbohydrates improve conversion into Serotonin.
5-HTP also requires the presence of some vitamins and minerals to be converted to another form (5HT), but much less than it is in the case of L-tryptophan to be converted to 5HTP. 5HTP in our liver is converted to 5HT but it can do it only with the help of Vitamin B6. However, if you are even mildly deficient in Vitamin B6, this tryptophan will be converted to toxic metabolites, by the liver! It is therefore very important 5-HTP should be taken with either vitamin B6 or multivitamin which is high in B6, B complex, or such as Healthy Mega.
5-HTP is well absorbed from an oral dose, with about 70 percent ending up in the bloodstream. It easily crosses the blood-brain barrier and effectively increases the central nervous system (CNS) synthesis of serotonin.
Some people say they don’t need 5-HTP because they can get tryptophan from the food such as turkey or other meats. Well, experts say that eating high protein foods containing tryptophan does not increase serotonin because most foods including turkey contain other powerful amino acids that prevent tryptophan from being absorbed and pass the blood-brain barrier.
– Ashwagandha reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol (>, >, >). This health benefit of Ashwagandha is very important as high cortisol levels contribute to high blood sugar levels (cortisol is released when blood sugar goes too low), increased fat storage in the abdomen, increased muscle loss & weakness, premature wrinkles, cognitive impairment, suppressed immunity, etc.
– For instance, researchers from the Asha Hospital in Hyderabad who conducted a study involving 64 people suffering from chronic stress found that supplementing Ashwagandha for two months decreased stress by 44% and significantly improved mood (>).
– In a 2006 clinical trial, subjects on Ashwagandha had a 30.5% reduction in serum cortisol and a 32.5% increase in levels of dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), the hormone that counterbalances the activity of cortisol (>).
– In a six-week study, 88% of subjects on Ashwagandha reported a reduction in anxiety (>).
– In another experiment, Ashwagandha was able to decrease the frequency and severity of instances where stress inhibits male sexual behaviour (>).
The amazing good news about Ashwagandha is that it not only lowers cortisol when it is too high (as a result of stress) but it can be also effective in treating adrenal fatigue in which case it increases cortisol when it is too low!
In a certain experiment, mice that swam in the water for five hours lost a significant amount of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and cortisol due to the exercise stress. However, when the same exercising mice received Ashwagandha, the loss of cortisol and vitamin C was prevented! (>)
Due to chronic stress, adrenal glands become exhausted and do not make enough cortisol in between stressful events. And since we need a small amount of this hormone all the time we experience symptoms of adrenal fatigue caused by a deficiency of cortisol. Taking Ashwagandha, however, seems to reduce the loss of cortisol, helping us to cope with adrenal fatigue symptoms.
Read more about ADRENAL FATIGUE >
Ashwagandha reduces anxiety, depression & sleep problems; Promotes a feeling of calmness and relaxation by enhancing GABA signalling and serotonin levels in the brain. Ashwagandha’s Latin name “somnifera” can be translated as “sleep-inducing”.
The anti-anxiety effect of Ashwagandha may be also due to the ability of Withanolides to mimic the activity of the calming neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) which reduces overactivity in neurons, acting as a nerve tonic and helping relax, improve mood, reduce anxiety, and promote good sleep. (>)
– In the 12-week 2009 study, a standard multi-vitamin and 300 milligrams of Ashwagandha twice daily decreased anxiety levels by 55 percent without side effects or adverse reaction. Significant improvements in vitality, energy levels and overall quality of life were also noticed (>).
– In a 2000 experimental study involving rats, Ashwagandha proved to have antidepressant properties. It was concluded that it can be used as a mood stabilizer in clinical conditions of depression (>).
– In a study involving 64 people suffering from chronic stress found that supplementing Ashwagandha for two months decreased stress by 44% and significantly improved mood.
– According to a 60-day trial stressed adults who took 600mg of Ashwagandha extract every day reported a 79% reduction in severe depression (>).
– Ginseng has excellent anti-stress properties. Rg1 and Re ginsenosides in Ginseg act as partial agonists of the glucocorticoid receptor. They compensate for insufficient steroidal activities when the intrinsic ligand is inadequate. They also reversibly occupy a certain percentage of the steroidal receptor at low affinity to counter the steroidal effects when they co-exist in a presence of a large amount of intrinsic ligand. Ginseng has demonstrated to improve mood. A study involving 30 volunteers, found that 200 milligrams of ginseng for eight days can improve mood; and 400-milligram dose improves calmness and cognition.
Natural News science-based health organization on Ginseng:
“Truly amazing, fast-acting, totally safe, and extremely powerful energy booster.”
“Siberian Ginseng is a more powerful energy factor then Panax. Most competing runners use it because they simply can not outrun the competition that does use it!”
“Siberian Ginseng has been successfully used to treat bone marrow suppression caused by chemotherapy or radiation, high cholesterol levels, hypertension, neurasthenia with headache, insomnia, and poor appetite.”
“Siberian Ginseng is also used for kidney disease, Alzheimer’s, ADHD, chronic fatigue, diabetes, peripheral neuropathy, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, hangover, flu, colds, bronchitis, tuberculosis, and side effects of chemotherapy.”
“Used by all Russian astronauts.”
“Best adaptogen ever used by man.”
A study involving 80 stressed and mildly anxious participants found that the group taking Rhodiola rosea in the form of 2 × 200 mg dose experienced a significant reduction in anxiety, stress, anger, confusion and depression and significant improvements in total mood (>).
– Chamomile has been known for centuries as an excellent natural aid in calming the nervous system and easing stress and worry. Clinical and laboratory research has provided strong evidence that Chamomile is not only relaxing, but it can be effective in improving mood and psychological well-being. Scientific research also confirms that Chamomile’s relaxing effect increases when it is used regularly over a longer period of time. Chamomile has been widely used for a very long time as a folk remedy for its presumed sedative effects and sleep aid, which was repeatedly confirmed by modern research. For instance, according to a 2016 study Chamomile may be safely used and recommended to postpartum women as a supplementary approach to alleviating sleep quality problems and low mood.
– Since almost everyone in the UK is deficient in Vitamin D you also need to supplement this vitamin as it also supports our nervous system. But make sure you have enough magnesium as without it vitamin D is useless. In addition, vitamin D will lead to magnesium deficiency as it uses magnesium for its own conversion in the body.
– Alpha-lipoic acid and sublingual Methylcobalamin (a highly bioavailable form of Vitamin B12) have frequently demonstrated their ability to not only prevent neurological damage in our body but even reverse it. Certain scientific paper mentions about a 57-year-old woman who was treated for years with antipsychotic and antidepressant medications and given two rounds of electroconvulsive treatment before anyone bothered to check her vitamin B12 level. Her symptoms were years of anxiety, movement abnormalities, constipation, suicidal, depressed, and lethargic. Within two months of identifying her deficiency, and subsequent B12 treatment, she reverted to her baseline of 14 years previous, and remained stable with no additional treatment. B12 helps produce myelin that protects nerve fibres. A deficiency in B12 can damage myelin and result in serious neurological problems and multiple sclerosis-like symptoms.
– L-Theanine: It is interesting that one of the top search terms that people are looking for today using internet browsers is: “L-Theanine for anxiety”. L-Theanine is a unique amino acid compound found almost exclusively in the tea plant (Camellia sinensis). It has become famous for its ability to reduce stress levels and promote a calm, relaxed state of mind. In the brain, L-Theanine raises alpha-brain wave activity, associated with an increased sense of relaxation. L-Theanine has become so valuable and popular relaxant today because at the same time it doesn’t cause drowsiness but even increases alertness and cognitive function of the brain including focus, memory and attention during the day. One of the best L-Theanine benefits is that it is virtually free from side effects, even at larger dosages and used over a longer period of time. A Japanese study showed oral L-Theanine administration of a single dose of 200 mg led to increased alpha-brain waves and sense of relaxation. By now we know that brain converts L-Theanine into body’s key relaxing neurotransmitters GABA, dopamine and serotonin. Scientists have found that L-Theanine’s relaxing and anti-stress effect is most evident in people with high baseline anxiety.
– Omega 3: A good quality distilled and free from heavy metals Omega 3 fish oil can be very beneficial for the nervous system, yet consuming fish seems to have the opposite effects: Fish Consumption and Suicide > Omega 3 fatty acids which are also crucial for the proper functioning of the nervous system.
– Saffron: Depression is a serious disorder in today’s society with prevalence as high as 21 percent of the general population in some developed countries. Saffron has been demonstrated as an effective anti-depressant in recent studies. In a double-blind, randomised control trial done by Akhondzadeh et al. (2004) participants were randomly assigned to receive a capsule of saffron (30 milligrams a day) or a capsule of a well-known antidepressant, imipramine (100 milligrams per day) for a six-week study. Saffron at this dose was found to be effective in a similar manner to imipramine in the treatment of mild to moderate depression. In another double-blind randomised control trial done by Mazidi et al. (2016), the anti-depressant effect of saffron was evaluated on 60 adult patients with anxiety and depression. The patients were randomised to receive a 50 mg saffron capsule or a placebo twice daily for 12 weeks. Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and Beck Anxiety Inventory (BAI) questionnaires were used at baseline, 6 and 12 weeks after initiating medication and the saffron supplements demonstrated a significant effect on the BDI and BAI scores.
– Good Probiotic formula such as MoodProbio is another one which can improve your ability to control stress as beneficial bacteria stimulate the production of B vitamins, serotonin, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), and dopamine all involved in enhancing our mood. The best natural food source of probiotics is raw home-made sauerkraut >
– Apart from mentioned above, the following herbal remedies and adaptogens are known for their relaxing and strengthening our nerves system properties: Astragalus, Maca, Damiana, Gotu Kola, Tulsi (Holy Basil), Lemon balm, etc.
– Learn to control stress, depression and anxiety by positive thinking, frequent smiling and laughter exercises, taking care of others, helping people in need, going for a walk, enjoying life and the beauty of nature. In this way you will boost good hormones, program cells to live longer, build new strong neural pathways, greatly reduce the number of free radicals, and show the immune system that you enjoy life. As a result, those smart and intelligent tiny soldiers (leukocytes) will never attack your own body (causing autoimmune diseases) but will protect and fight for you like Kamikazes.
Unfortunately, from experience, we know that for most of us it is very difficult and often even impossible to control stress, overcome fear, anxiety and depression, or to become a positive thinking person simply because those negative emotions and fears are so deeply rooted and even seem to be a part of our nature. Sometimes we even feel like slaves of those negative attitudes and bad emotions.
And that is the very reason I included on my website a very special, unique and even most important section called EMPOWERMENT >. So please read it carefully and then study also another article – the GOSPEL OF FREEDOM >, which is even more significant as it reveals the secret of finding the only source of true inward peace which according to Apostle Paul “surpasses all knowledge” and which can “guard (protect) our hearts and minds (emotions)”. Combined with true strong faith this message will lead you to freedom from negative emotions such as anxiety or existential fears (one of the key source of deadly free radicals). It will also empower you with moral strength necessary to overcome long-cultivated bad habits or addictions, often impossible for us to defeat on our own. Finally, this unique and most wonderful Good News of the Gospel will also give you new strength and a powerful motivation to not only practice but also enjoy the new and very healthy way of life.
– Deina Nemiary, MD, MPH; Ruth Shim, MD, MPH; Gail Mattox, MD; Kisha Holden, PhD. 2012. The Relationship Between Obesity and Depression Among Adolescents. Psychiatric Annals. August 2012 – Volume 42 · Issue 8: 305-308.
– Maglione-Garves CA, Kravitz L, Schneider S. “Stress Cortisol Connection: Tips on Managing Stress and Weight”. University of New Mexico.
– Abraham SB, Rubino D, Sinaii N, Ramsey S, Nieman LK. 2013. Cortisol, obesity, and the metabolic syndrome: a cross-sectional study of obese subjects and review of the literature.
– Obesity (Silver Spring). 2013 Jan; 21 (1): E105-17.
– Franklin D. McMillan (2012). Stress-induced and emotional eating in animals: A review of the experimental evidence and implications for companion animal obesity. Journal of Vet Behavior, 5 May 2012:
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– Dryden S, Pickavance L, Frankish HM, Williams G (September 1995). “Increased neuropeptide Y secretion in the hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus of obese (fa/fa) Zucker rats”. Brain Res. 690 (2): 1858.
– Wilcox G (May 2005). “Insulin and insulin resistance”. Clin Biochem Rev 26 (2): 1939.
– Nature Medicine 4, 718 – 721 (1998) Role of the Y5 neuropeptide Y receptor in feeding and obesity. Donald J. Marsh, Gunther Hollopeter, Kathy E. Kafer & Richard D. Palmiter
– Heva A, Laitinen J, Miettunen J, et al. Obesity and depression: results from the longitudinal Northern Finland 1966 Birth Cohort Study. Int J Obes. 2006; 30(3): 520527.
– Dallman MF. Stress-induced obesity and the emotional nervous system. Trends Endocrinol. Metab. 2010; 21:159165.
– Segerstrom, S. C. and Miller, G. E. (2004). Psychological Stress and the Human Immune System: A Meta-Analytic Study of 30 Years of Inquiry. Psychological Bulletin, Vol. 130, No. 4.
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