A Pro-Active Approach to Reducing Stress

By Dr. Michael Roth

This post concludes my three-part series on stress, excerpted from my book, Balancing Your Emotional Health. I specialize in the mind/ body connection, and as I’ve stated in previous newsletter articles, stress is the underlying culprit of many of the issues my clients present in my Ventura holistic chiropractic practice. Here are three tried-and-true activities you can start using right now to reduce stress.

Flickr photo credit Giuseppe Milo

Dr. Herbert Benson is a pioneer in mind/body medicine. In his 35-plus-year career, he has defined the relaxation response and continues to lead teaching and research into its efficacy in counteracting the harmful effects of stress. When Dr. Benson introduced this simple, effective, mind/body approach to relieving stress in 1975, his book became an instant national bestseller. The Relaxation Response has become the classic reference recommended by most health care professionals and authorities to treat the harmful effects of stress.

Relaxation Response

by Dr. Herbert Benson

1. Sit quietly in a comfortable position.

2. Close your eyes.

3. Deeply relax all your muscles, beginning at your feet and progressing up to your face. Keep them relaxed.

4. Breathe through your nose. Become aware of your breathing. As you breathe out, say the word “ONE” silently to yourself. For example, breathe IN…OUT, “ONE”; IN…OUT, “ONE”, etc. Breathe easily and naturally.

5. Continue for 10 to 20 minutes. You may open your eyes to check the time, but do not use an alarm.

6. When you finish, sit quietly for several minutes, at first with your eyes closed and later with your eyes opened.

7. Do not stand up for a few minutes.

8. Do not worry about whether you are successful in achieving a deep level of relaxation. Maintain a passive attitude and permit relaxation to occur at its own pace. When distracting thoughts occur, try to ignore them by not dwelling upon them and return to repeating “ONE.”

9. With practice, the response should come with little effort. Practice the technique once or twice daily, but not within two hours after any meal, since the digestive processes seem to interfere with the elicitation of the Relaxation Response.

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The neck is a primary target for stress. Here is a simple exercise to release tightness and tension in the neck and shoulders.

NECK AND SHOULDER RELEASE

1. Begin by letting your left ear drift slowly towards your left shoulder. Only go within your normal range of motion, and relax.

2. Place your arms on your lap or at your sides. Then, move your right hand behind your back to extend the flexion for that area.

3. Breathe and relax in that position for 15 to 30 seconds.

4. Repeat on the other side.

5. Next, gently let your chin fall to your chest. Slowly rotate your head in a small semicircle from one side of your collarbone to the other.  Hold your extension for a few seconds at any spot that is a particularly stressed or tight.

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This last exercise is designed to release tension in the neck and shoulders and increase the natural range of motion when turning your head side to side.

TRAPEZIUS RELEASE

 1. With the right hand, grasp the top of your left shoulder muscle (trapezius) and squeeze it gently.

2. Take in a deep breath. When you exhale, turn your head away from the hand, while looking over your right shoulder. Inhale when turning the head back to center.

3. Exhale while turning the head to look over the left shoulder. Return the head to center position.

4. Exhale, drop the chin to the chest. Inhale and raise the head to face forward.

5. Repeat steps 2-4 three times.

6. Next grasp the top of the right shoulder with the left hand and repeat steps 2-5 on the other side.

I encourage you to practice these exercises and feel for yourself the difference they make. As always, I am here to support you in health and wellness. Please call Crystal in my Ventura office at 805-644-0461 for an appointment.

 

If you enjoyed this excerpt and would like to purchase my soft-cover book, Balancing Your Emotional Health, please call the office or click here for more information.

 

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Summing Up Stress

By Dr. Michael Roth

“Mind is where the action is… body is where the reaction is.”               Frederick Eikerenkoetter (Rev. Ike)

In my holistic chiropractic office in Ventura, I often see clients whose conditions are aggravated or even caused by excess stress. This month’s article is an excerpt from my book, Balancing Your Emotional Health.

SUMMING UP STRESS

Flickr photo credit sandiegopersonalinjuryattorneydotnet

Over the last 50 years, many researchers (psychologists and computer language specialists) have compared the brain/mind relationship to that of a computer and its operating system (program that directs the computer).  When the program is properly written, fully functional, and free from flaws, the computer functions perfectly, giving accurate responses and producing valuable and necessary operations.

The mentally balanced human being functions perfectly when under conditions of no stress to low stress. Under conditions of high stress, the overload causes restriction to the flow of energy, which leads us to disease, illness, exhaustion, system breakdowns, etc.

Your own state of health comes from your most constant, deepest felt, emotionally based, thoughts. Negations, those diseased (dis-eased or lacking ease) thoughts, transmute themselves into sick cells and a sick body.

For example, if you tell yourself, “I can’t stand it when my boss does this or that”; your body simply responds with a “Yes, sir!” as if a soldier was respectfully doing what was ordered by the commander.

The body is the servant of the mind and it will obey the commands you just gave when you said, “I can’t stand…” That’s what your mind heard and therefore, created. It might takes a few months or maybe even several years, but the repeated negative thought will eventually give you a reaction that you don’t really want.

Flickr photo credit Trizoultro

Thus, the mind (or brain/mind) is where the action is, and body is where the reaction is. If you say you can’t stand something, expect back and leg problems.

WATCH YOUR WORDS – whether your thoughts are intentional or spontaneous, they will create some reaction. When the mind is directed by negative or fearful thoughts, the bodily response usually will be disease and/ or functional failure.

Fearful thoughts cause STRESS. The two combined (fear + stress) are as deadly as the most dreaded diseases of our time. Fear, caused by excessive and/or non-rational worrisome thinking, kills people everyday.

Flickr photo credit Nate Steiner

Stress is more deadly than any influence, viral infection, or any disease currently affecting humanity. Stress is responsible for 95% of the disease on the planet. Just as it drives people to smoke, drink, use drugs (legal and not legal) to manage it, if left unmanaged it leads to smoking, drinking, drug use, and life-threatening disease.

People who live in fear of disease are too often those who get ill. They who fear the worst can always discover it in their lives or in the lives of those they know.

When you are fearful, upset, anxious, or nervous, those stressful forces can begin the gradual breakdown of your entire nervous and immunological system and your entire body. Stress, caused by negative thoughts that include fear, guilt, shame, envy, jealousy, and more, will kill you if you don’t control it.

Negative thoughts open the body to physical disease by taking the Triad (the balance of the physical, emotional and chemical components of your body) out of balance by weakening the mental/ emotional side. They also weaken the immune system by blocking  the natural flow of energy within your body. It has been shown, time and time again, that fearful, unbalanced, disharmonious thoughts can lead to the stresses that damage your health.

 

When your mind is given pleasant and courageous thoughts, a world of wonder, beauty, health and happiness prevails. Positive, strong, pure, and healthy thoughts always bring health and vitality.

Most members of the medical profession have either heard or believe that positive thinking, happiness, and humor can reduce the effects of disease or surgery and aid in the recovery process.

If you possess thoughts that are impure, or if you have thoughts that lack a high vibrational quality, meaning that they are negative in nature and vibrate in opposition to your values and beliefs, you’ll have a body with toxins in your bloodstream, weakened antibodies, and you’ll get sick regularly with illnesses that are very difficult to remedy.

From a clean heart and mind comes a clean body. From an unclean one, comes a diseased and weakened body. Always remember that health or disease and the quality of your experience on Earth is up to you, your attitudes, and your thoughts.

Flickr photo credit Matt Madd

If you would like to make an appointment for an office visit, please call Amber in my Ventura office at 805-644-0461.

If you enjoyed this excerpt and would like to purchase my soft-cover book, Balancing Your Emotional Health, please call the office or click here for more information.

emotional_book

Your Gut Response

By Dr. Michael Roth

At one time or another, most of us have felt our stomach talking to us. Perhaps we overate, or ate something that didn’t agree with us. Maybe we are stressed by our thoughts or our circumstances, or can’t “stomach” what is going on in our lives and it is affecting our health.

The fact is that most of us will suffer from one digestive disorder or another at some time in our lives. The highest number of calls received by the National Health Service is from people suffering with digestive problems. Our diet and the foods we eat play a major role in keeping our digestive system in good order. This month, I’d like to discuss three common digestive problems that I see in patients in my holistic chiropractic practice: heartburn, indigestion and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

 

Heartburn

First of all, heartburn has nothing to do with the heart itself. Rather, it is a term used to describe the burning sensation that occurs in the chest area, just behind the breastbone. Heartburn pain is often worse when lying down or bending over.

It may be accompanied by other symptoms including: regurgitation, a bitter taste at the back of the mouth or throat, excess salivation, belching, and difficulty or pain when swallowing. There is often a feeling of “fullness” after eating, feeling sick and/or vomiting. Heartburn can develop at any time and may not always be as a result of eating or drinking. Stress is also a common cause of heartburn.

Heartburn occurs when stomach acid backs up into your esophagus. Normally when you swallow, your lower esophageal sphincter — a circular band of muscle around the bottom part of your esophagus — relaxes to allow food and liquid to flow down into your stomach. Then it closes again.

However, if the lower esophageal sphincter relaxes abnormally or weakens, stomach acid can flow back up into your esophagus, causing heartburn. The acid backup may be worse when you’re bent over or lying down.

Flickr photo credit evindc

The advice for sufferers is to eat slowly and in a relaxed environment, concentrate on enjoying your food and chew it thoroughly. Do not drink too much while eating. Sip fennel, mint, chamomile or apple tea.

Foods to avoid include crisps, chips, nuts and rich creamy or fried foods; acidic foods like vinegar and pickles; citrus fruits or unripe fruit can cause acid reflex. Smoking can also cause heartburn—another reason to quit!

 

Indigestion

Indigestion, also known as dyspepsia, is a term used to describe one or more symptoms including a feeling of fullness during a meal, uncomfortable fullness after a meal, and burning or pain in the upper abdomen. Sometimes the term indigestion is used to describe the symptoms of heartburn, but these are two different conditions. A person can have symptoms of both indigestion and heartburn.

Indigestion can be caused by a condition in the digestive tract such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), peptic ulcer disease, cancer, or abnormality of the pancreas or bile ducts. If the condition improves or resolves, the symptoms of indigestion usually improve.

Sometimes, however, a person has indigestion for which  a cause cannot be found. This type of indigestion, called  functional dyspepsia, is thought to occur in the area where  the stomach meets the small intestine. The indigestion  may be related to abnormal motility—the squeezing or  relaxing action—of the stomach muscle as it receives, digests, and moves food into the small intestine.

Most people with indigestion experience more than one of the following symptoms:

Fullness during a meal. The person feels overly full soon after the   meal starts and cannot finish the meal.

Bothersome fullness after a meal. The person feels overly full after a meal—it may feel like the food is staying in the stomach too long.

Epigastric pain. The epigastric area is between the lower end of the chest bone and the navel. The person may experience epigastric pain ranging from mild to severe.

Epigastric burning. The person feels an unpleasant sensation of heat in the epigastric area.

 

Some people may experience relief from symptoms of indigestion by eating several small, low-fat meals throughout the day at a slow pace, refraining from smoking, abstaining from consuming coffee, carbonated beverages and alcohol, stopping use of medications that may irritate the stomach lining such as aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs, getting enough rest, and finding ways to decrease emotional and physical stress, such as relaxation therapy or exercise.

 

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

IBS affects a third of the population at some time or another and about one in ten people suffer symptoms bad enough to go to the doctor. It can be painful and distressing, and a qualified medical practitioner should confirm diagnosis of IBS.

Symptoms include abdominal pain or a sharp pain felt low down inside the rectum, spasm/diarrhea and bloated stomach, rumbling noises and wind, constipation, nausea, belching and vomiting. Stress is believed to play a significant part in the occurrence of IBS.

Despite current awareness of IBS and its effect on the quality of life, a cure has yet to be found. Some people find their IBS is due to food intolerance. Foods to avoid are wheat products, cereals, pastries and pasta and sauces made with flour. Cut down on diary intake – milk, cheese, butter, yogurt and custard.

It is best to keep food as light as possible – try milk substitutes such as organic soy or rice milk. IBS is sometimes aggravated by particularly fatty and rich foods like fried or creamy dishes.

 

Stress

The common denominator found in all three of these conditions is STRESS!  Mental, emotional and physical stress often shows up as dis-ease in our body. Our “gut response” is a communication from our body that something needs to change.

I have found QNRT (Quantum Neurological Reset Therapy) to be an excellent program to remove the emotional stressors that prevent the body from functioning at its best. QNRT is a great complimentary therapy designed to aid with any other treatment you are now seeking to find relief from disease, behavioral issues, relationship challenges and addictions.

Flickr photo credit Celestine Chua

If your gut has been talking to you and you don’t know what it is saying or asking, please call Amber in our Ventura office at 805-644-0461 and make an appointment for an office visit with me. Don’t let the symptoms of heartburn, indigestion or IBS rule your body and your life. You CAN take charge of your health and wellbeing!

Your Thyroid Gland — The Butterfly in Your Throat

By Dr. Michael Roth

 

The thyroid gland is part of the body’s endocrine system. This means it is a gland that produces secretions called hormones, which are delivered to the body through the blood. The thyroid gland is located in the neck, just under what we call the Adam’s apple. It is in the shape of a butterfly, with 2 ‘wings’ or ‘lobes’.

 

 

Controlled by the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, the thyroid combines iodine from the food we consume with the amino acid tyrosine and produces two main hormones. Over the years, in my holistic practice at my chiropractic office in Ventura, I have seen the health of many of my patients compromised by an out-of-balance thyroid.

 

The hormones produced by the thyroid do two important things:

1) They help the necessary enzymes and electrolytes pass into each cell of the body.

2) They help the processes of energy production in the mitochondria.

 

The mitochondria are the “energy-generating stations” within each cell. In the mitochondrion (singular), enzymes are used to combine carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms, forming carbon dioxide and water, and releasing chemical energy. This process of converting oxygen and the food consumed into energy needed by the body is referred to as metabolism. This conversion is imperative to carry out every function necessary to maintain life.

 

The hormones produced by the thyroid also perform the following functions:

1. Raise the metabolic rate of almost all the cells in the body

2. Stimulate protein synthesis and degradation

3. Stimulate the heart

4. Increase the breakdown of fat

5. Interact with the adrenals and the catecholamines (the fight-or-flight hormones)

 

When the thyroid is working improperly, or is out of balance, one of two conditions tends to happen. Hypothyroidism is the term referred to when the thyroid produces too little or is underproductive. The overproduction state is called hyperthyroidism.

 

If the thyroid is under-producing, you may experience symptoms such as fatigue or lethargy, weight gain, cold hands and feet, infertility, hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), constipation, dry skin and hair, sensitivity to cold, sinus congestion, premenstrual syndrome and depression.

 

An overactive thyroid may leave you with feelings of being anxious or nervous for no apparent reason, increased pulse rate and rapid heartbeat, the inability to gain weight even when eating above-normal calories daily, frequent loose bowel movements, and excessive sweating.

 

These are not comprehensive lists, yet they show the diversity of the effects of an out-of-balance thyroid. Because the symptoms of a thyroid condition can appear to be problems all their own, thyroid conditions are often mis- or under-diagnosed. As a holistic chiropractor, I use non-invasive procedures to determine if the thyroid gland is the culprit in my patient’s dis-ease.

 

Stress, nutritional deficiencies, environmental toxins and other diseases such as diabetes and cancer wreak havoc on the thyroid. Therefore developing a healthy lifestyle is just as much key to having a healthy thyroid gland as it is to your general overall health.

 

Ensure you are eating a variety of fruits and vegetables, drinking plenty of water, taking omega-3 oils, eating complex carbohydrates rather than refined sugars, and limiting your fat intake. Remember the higher the quality of nutrition your body has to work with, the better quality fuel it can create.

 

Exercising, getting plenty of uninterrupted sleep and reducing or dealing with life-stressors as efficiently as possible, are also lifestyle factors that can help keep you running your best.

Flickr photo credit der wunderbare mandarin

 

If you are experiencing any of the possible symptoms of an over-or under-active thyroid, please call Amber in our Ventura office at 805-644-0461and make an appointment with me for an evaluation.

 

Control Your Stress and Stay Healthy!

Your body can adapt to stress quite nicely, yet there are times when the body goes into a “flight or fight” response when stress occurs.

 

Imagine you are hiking through the words and suddenly you see a bear! Here are the changes that occur in your physical body as it prepares to fight or flee from the bear:

 

Your blood is redirected from your extremities (giving you cold hands and feet), from your face (creating a pale look) and from your digestive system to the large muscles to help you run or fight. Your pupils enlarge to help you see better and your hearing becomes sharper. Your breathing and heart rate increase, and your blood pressure rises. The adrenal glands secrete adrenalin and other hormones to create a heightened state of arousal. Glucose and oxygen are increased to the heart, brain and skeletal system for more energy.

 

Once the brain perceives that the threat is over, the body reverses this reaction to return to a more calm state. Blood goes back to the extremities and digestive system; heart rate, breathing and blood pressure go back to normal, etc.

 

Of course, this bear in the woods situation is not a regular occurrence here in Ventura, California! However, we humans may experience mini stress responses like this on a chronic basis. This consistent physical reaction can lead to health problems such as heart disease, heart attacks, insomnia, high blood pressure, low energy, anxiety, weight loss or gain, and depression. Experts say that chronic stress can affect the immune system, which can lead to frequent colds and flu.

 

The body reacts just like the extreme physical response described above,but on a lesser scale when continual stress is experienced. These consistent mini-reactions can wear the body down and take years off our lives. In my practice as a holistic chiropractor, I see patients whose lives are being chipped away by chronic stress.

 

Nape pain

What can we do about the little annoyances of life that haunt us every day? Deep relaxation exercises can save us from the turmoil of stress. There are many relaxation techniques that you can do on a daily basis to help you lead a more stress-free life. I suggest you search the Internet or purchase a book or DVD on relaxation techniques, find something that feels good to you and do it regularly.

 

Breathing techniques work wonders. They can slow the brain waves down and help you think more clearly. Many people breathe too shallowly into their lungs. Practicing abdominal breathing encourages better oxygenation of the body. One breathing technique I do regularly is the following:

 

Lie or sit down and put your hands on your abdomen. Breathe in deeply and feel your abdomen rise. If you feel your chest rise instead, breathe in more deeply until you feel your hands rise on your abdomen. Once you have achieved this pattern, do a few minutes of abdominal breathing. Breathe in SLOWLY through your nose for the count of four. Hold your breath for the count of four and then breathe out through pursed lips (as if you are going to whistle) SLOWLY for the count of six.

 

Do this for five to ten minutes twice a day. This will definitely relax you!

 

There are many other relaxation techniques you can try such as meditation, progressive relaxation, imagery, etc. Exercise is a great stress reliever and is a must! Exercise produces endorphins, a source of pleasure. It can help to lower blood pressure as well.

 

Watch your self-talk. This is the talk that goes on in your mind all day long. Be more understanding and forgiving of the little irritations or people who frustrate you. They may have just had a fight with their spouse or heard some bad news and are struggling with their emotions. Be positive and stop any negative thoughts in their tracks.

Flickr photo credit Steven Depolo

Flickr photo credit Steven Depolo

Get out with friends so you have balance in your life. Laugh, laugh, laugh. Watch funny videos. Laughter is great for your health!

 

Talk out or write down things that bother you, don’t keep them bottled up inside. Stress can kill, so if you feel like you just can’t cope, please seek medical help!

 

Enjoy life, as it is too short to get ourselves all tangled up in anger and frustration. Practice relaxation methods and you will see a huge difference in your life. Be happy!

Sympathetic Nervous System Dominance

If we were in the forest camping, and came upon a grizzly bear and its cub, we would have an instant to decide if we would stay and fight the bear, or run away from it as fast as we could!

Modern man has named that choice to react “fight-or-flight”, a term that is often used when talking about the human stress response. Though we no longer face bears on a regular basis, when we react to a car alarm with the same heightened response we would to a dangerous animal, we are stuck in the fight-or-flight mode!  Over my 25 years as a holistic chiropractor, I have treated many patients stuck in this pattern, and they have successfully released it and re-balanced their nervous system.

The human nervous system has two major divisions, the voluntary and the autonomic systems.  The voluntary system is concerned mainly with movement and sensation.  It consists of motor and sensory nerves, among many others.

The autonomic system mainly controls functions over which we have less conscious control.  These include the digestion of food, blood pressure and heart rate.  Its nerves leave the spine and connect to all the major organs and glands, either inhibiting or stimulating their activity.

The autonomic nervous system maintains a balance by regulating the internal organs, blood vessels, and hormones.  It is divided into the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems.  The sympathetic is active, controlling functions that include those associated with fight-or-flight.  The parasympathetic is passive, controlling the functions of rest and repair.

Flickr photo credit der wunderbare mandarin

Flickr photo credit der wunderbare mandarin

When we are in fight-or-flight mode, the sympathetic branch activates the glands and organs that defend the body against attack.   Its nerves direct more blood to the muscles and the brain.  The heart rate and blood pressure increase, while it decreases the blood flow to the digestive and eliminative organs.  It also activates the thyroid and adrenal glands to provide extra energy for fighting or running away.  Nervousness, stress or feelings of panic are what we feel when in a sympathetic state of readiness.

A constantly active sympathetic nervous system results in sympathetic dominance and puts the individual at risk for increased disease and illness. What drives a person into sympathetic dominance?  Chronic stress and overwork are the most common culprits.

The symptoms and illnesses associated with sympathetic nervous system dominance are those of fight-or-flight, and include: excessive worry, the inability to relax, nervous energy, and a strong self-will to “keep going.” Often my patients experience a dry mouth and sensitivity to bright lights and find loud music extremely irritating. Possible illnesses include: hypertension, heart disease, high cholesterol, type 1 diabetes, anxiety, panic attacks and poor sleep.

Flickr photo credit Bottled Void

If you recognize yourself having any of the above symptoms, know that there is a way to remove yourself from the fight-or-flight pattern.  I am experienced in cutting-edge techniques and protocols, and offer nutritional supplements as needed, to relieve your nervous system of the underlying stressors that are hindering it from functioning optimally.

When the sympathetic dominance pattern is broken, and balance is restored between the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems, the body’s innate knowing rushes in to restore the individual to an improved level of health and wellness!

Find out more about how your nervous system affects your health and your weight  here.

Powerful Technique to Control Stress!

By Dr. Michael Roth

I have been a holistic chiropractor for over 25 years now, helping people manage pain, stress levels, weight levels, and addictions.  I would like to share with you a very powerful, yet simple technique that can instantly “reboot” your system when you are experiencing stress.  Please watch the video below and try the technique.  Then, please leave me some feedback as to how this technique has helped you or someone you love manage stress!

 

Health, Wellness and the Adrenal Gland

Adrenal fatigue is a condition several people suffer from and for many is a condition under-diagnosed. This article will give an overview of what the adrenal glands do, and what can happen when they are overworked and become fatigued.

Flickr photo credit Dale Leschnitzer

The adrenal glands are endocrine glands which sit on top of the kidneys from which they are separated by a layer of fat. They are most known for their functioning when in situations of danger or stress the body moves into a ‘fight or flight’ state as they send adrenaline into the blood. It’s the adrenal glands that have the body ‘ready for combat.’

Their function goes far beyond this however. Hormones produced by the adrenal glands control the body’s use of fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, suppress inflammatory reactions in the body and also affect the immune system. Other hormones inhibit the level of sodium excreted into the urine, maintaining blood volume and blood pressure, while others are responsible for the formation of male characteristics.

With prolonged stress and an unhealthy lifestyle, the adrenal glands become fatigued causing various symptoms including:

– premature aging

– dark circles under your eyes

– low blood sugar

– low blood pressure

– light headedness when standing up

– cravings for sweets – carbohydrates

– cravings for salt

– easily irritated

– dry, unhealthy skin with excess pigmentation

– heart palpitations

– excessive sweating or perspiration with little activity

– muscle twitches

– lower back and/or knee weakness or pain

– weight gain

– poor memory

– lack of libido

– alcohol intolerance

– fatigue, especially at midday, yet have insomnia or poor sleep

– lower immunity or increased susceptibility to infections

– increased environmental sensitivities

– allergies

Though this is not an exhaustive list, it gives insight into the vast array of problems that can be experienced when the adrenals become fatigued.

 

What contributes to adrenal fatigue? Common causes include, but are not limited to:

– imbalance or excess of emotions such as anger, guilt, worry, fear and depression

– sleep deprivation

– surgery

– chronic inflammation

– chronic pain

– toxic exposure

– excessive exercise

– overworked with physical or mental strain

– inability to absorb nutrients

– nutritional deficiencies

What can you do to help relieve the exhaustion? There are various nutritional and lifestyle changes that can be made to help alleviate the stress on the adrenal glands.

First, recognize that the body needs rest – sleep is vital to a healthy body. Get to bed early and aim for a night of uninterrupted sleep.

Eliminate sugar, alcohol and processed carbohydrates from your diet. Removal of these will help ease the adrenals as they help regulate your blood sugar. Eating regular meals can also help in this respect.

In aiming to keep your blood sugar regulated, it is suggested to avoid high glycemic fruits such as bananas, mangos, dates, pineapples, etc., for a period of time.

Ensure that a healthy fat is incorporated in each meal and eat healthy protein.

Because toxins stress the adrenals, eating organic food that is free of pesticides, insecticides and antibiotics can really rid the adrenals of excess stress when they are already in a stressed state.

Drink plenty of fresh filtered water and cut out caffeinated beverages.

It is also worth considering taking extra nutritional supplements specific to supporting the adrenal glands. Find a trustworthy nutritional supplement company and inquire about such products.

 

Do all within your means to live a balanced life. To the extent that it is within your control, keep your work time to regular hours and let go of activities and people that only add stress to your day.

flickr photo credit viewminder

flickr photo credit viewminder

Do not add to your stress by trying to implement all the nutritional and lifestyle changes at once. Start with one or two suggestions and add others as you go. Getting your adrenals back to a healthy state will be a gift you give to yourself.

Your Diet & Your Health

Flickr photo credit Nik

There is not a day that goes by that a new, better, different diet is promoted to the public. When that happens, people jump on the “new” bandwagon. People will follow the new diet in hopes of losing the weight that they put on in the last ten years by next month. Then they jump ship when the next, new, better, and different diet comes along. This is the trend and the habit people have embarked on concerning dieting.

A better approach is to see your “diet” as a means to an end – better health, a longer and happier life. As a society, the word diet has been equated with losing weight instead of being healthy. Eating healthier foods, exercising regularly, and confronting habits that might be affecting your health; such as smoking, drugs, over eating, etc., is a more effective approach to creating and maintaining your health.

The media is doing a much better job of linking poor diet with minor and serious health issues. People who are overweight are now hearing the serious consequences and risks that are associated with being overweight. Some people are actually listening to the reports coming out and some people still do not hear the message.

The problem with eating is – we all have to eat. Eating, as with anything, can become an addiction. Eating is driven by emotions, behaviors, environments, and conditioning. People do not always understand what is driving the excessive eating nor have they been diagnosed with health issues related to their weight – yet. By the time a person develops health issues, the habits are very ingrained and people do not know how or believe that anything can change.

The truth about your health is, from the first day you decide that health is your priority your body will begin to heal itself. Your body is a self-healing machine if you provide it with exercise, better food each day, a positive attitude, remove or manage stress, change your environment, and determine what is driving the emotional side of eating.

None of the activities a person needs to do have to be very complicated or sophisticated. You do not need to walk one hour on your first day – walk five to ten minutes! Do what you can until you are ready to do more – it is that simple. Find an activity that you loved as a child – like dancing or jump roping, or biking, or swimming. The activity does not matter – the consistency and the doing matter.

Flickr photo credit Angelo Benedetto

Begin to pay attention to what you are eating, the size of your portions, the frequency of eating, etc. For one week just document everything until you can begin to see the patterns. Then determine one or two things you will change the following week; such as, having smaller servings, eating only five times a day versus seven times a day, replacing fast food for lunch with a lunch from home, etc.

There is a lot of information about the topic of health and diet. Educate yourself, find workshops to attend, join a support group of like-minded people, find a nutritionist or a health coach.

The key is to make health your habit.  For more information on diet and your health, contact http://www.rothwellnesscenter.com.

Stress, your health, and how you can cope!

Photo credit Racchio

The body can adapt to stress quite nicely, but there are times when the body goes into a “flight or fight” response when stress occurs.

An example of this would be if you were to meet a bear in the woods, your physical body would go through a number of changes to prepare you to either fight or flee this situation. Your blood would be redirected from your extremities (giving you cold hands and feet), from your face (pale look) and from your digestive system to the large muscles to help you to run or fight. Your pupils would enlarge to help you see better and your hearing would become sharper. Your breathing and heart rate would increase, as well as your blood pressure would rise. The adrenal glands would secrete adrenalin and other hormones to create a heightened state of arousal. Glucose and oxygen would be increased to the organs such as the heart, brain and skeletal system for more energy.
Once the brain perceived that the threat was over the body would reverse this reaction to a more calm state. Blood would go back to the extremities and digestive system, heart rate, breathing and blood pressure would go back to normal, etc. This bear in the woods situation is not of course a daily occurrence; however humans can have mini stress responses like this on a chronic basis. This consistent physical reaction can lead to disease such as heart disease, heart attacks, insomnia, high blood pressure, low energy, anxiety, weight loss or gain and depression to name a few. Experts say that chronic stress can affect the immune system which can lead to frequent flu’s and colds.

The body reacts just like the extreme physical response described above but on a lesser scale when continual stress is experienced. These consistent mini reactions can wear the body down and take years off our lives.

What can we do about the little annoyances of life that haunt us every day? Deep relaxation exercises can save us from the turmoil of stress. There are many relaxation techniques that you can do on a daily basis to help you lead a more stress free life.

Breathing techniques work wonders. They can slow the brain waves down and help you think more clearly. One breathing technique I do regularly is the following: many people breath too shallowly into their lungs. Practice abdominal breathing. Lie or sit down and put your hands on your abdomen. Breath in deeply and feel your abdomen rise. If you are feeling your chest rise instead, breath in more deeply until you feel your hands rise on your abdomen. Once you have this down, start to do a few minutes of abdominal breathing. Breath in SLOWLY through your nose to the count of three or four (whatever is comfortable). Hold your breath for a second or two and then breath out through pursed lips (as if you are going to whistle) SLOWLY to the count of six to eight (double the intake count). Do this for five to ten minutes a couple times a day. This will definitely relax you!

Flickr photo credit EU Webnerd

Exercise is a great stress reliever and is a must! Exercise produces endorphins, a source of pleasure. It can help to lower blood pressure as well. There are many other relaxation techniques you can try such as meditation, progressive relaxation, imagery, etc.

Watch yourself talk. This is the talk that goes on in your mind all day long. Try to be more understanding and forgiving of the little irritations or people who frustrate you. They may have just had a fight with their spouse or heard some bad news and are in a bad space.

Be positive and stop any negative thoughts in their tracks.

Get out with friends so you have balance in your life.

Laugh! Buy funny videos. Laughter is great for health!

Talk out or write down things that bother you, don’t keep them bottled up inside.

Enjoy life, as it is too short to get ourselves all tangled up in anger and frustration.

Practice relaxation methods and you will see a huge difference in your life.

Be happy!

To learn more about stress and how you can cope.

Contact Dr Michael Roth DC 805-644-0461

Roth Wellness Center

Published in: on March 15, 2011 at 7:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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