Tips for Stress Management

Feeling Stressed Out

Feeling Stressed Out

In today’s fast paced environment, stress is a part of everybody’s life. It’s hard to avoid; traffic is off the charts, the economy is giving us a run for our money (literally) and the news seems to be filled with all kinds of negative scenarios not conducive to a relaxing evening. And to make matters worse, stress is a contributing factor to many health problems including cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, insomnia and obesity. So how are we supposed to relax?

According to a recent “Stress in America” poll conducted by the American Psychological Association, one third of those polled said that they experience extreme levels of stress and one in five people reported that they had high stress at least 15 days out of the month. 1 Stress can cause irritability and insomnia and can adversely affect relationships at home or work. These are some unpleasant by-products of stress. Stress can also cause weight gain, because of the stress related hormone Cortisol. This hormone becomes elevated during times of anxiety and has been linked to type 2 Diabetes because of its propensity to help concentrate fat around the stomach area.

Stressed Out: Methods to Overcome stress
It is very important that stress be controlled so you can live a better, healthier life. But what are some reliable stress busters? Sometimes simply identifying the source of the stress can be helpful and will mitigate feelings of frustration and of being overwhelmed. A surefire way to relieve stress is to exercise. If an important meeting, deadline or some other known stress trigger is coming up in your life, try to tackle it by taking a walk, hitting the gym, going for a hike or a bike ride. As a result, the body will release stress-fighting endorphins that, in turn, can help you sleep better, and as an added plus, the exercise itself will help overcome any stress related weight gain.

More stress:
Because of the confines of a busy, overloaded schedule it is often hard to find the time to exercise every and stress and anxiety can pile up on us. This is a universal problem. Some placate stress by "emotional eating" which has the obvious pitfalls of unwanted weight gain and therefore other health complications as result. Other might find prescription drugs relax them initially but then there is the problem of possible addiction or dependence to worry about. Also sleepiness and daytime grogginess is associated with some anti-anxiety medication. But there is an alternative that is all natural, non-addictive and effective.

Now. Go relax.

The Damaging Effects of Stress
* Work-related stress can double one’s risk of dying from heart disease. 5
* People with high levels of anxiety can have between two to seven times
the risk of heart disease. 6
* Two-thirds of all office visits to family physicians are due to stress-related symptoms 7
* 43 percent of all adults suffer adverse health effects from stress 8
* High levels of hostility have been found to predict heart disease more often than high cholesterol, cigarette smoking, or obesity 6


1 American Psychological Association. Stress Tip Sheet. (, May 2009.

2WebMD, Information and Resources. “DHEA Supplements: What Are They and Are They Safe?” Article: (, November 15, 2008.

3,4 WebMD, Diabetes Health Center. “Depression Raises Risk for Type 2 Diabetes.” Article (, June 8, 2009.

5 British Medical Journal, 2002 (Source:

6 "Emotional Longevity: What Really Determines How Long You Live," Norman B. Anderson and Elizabeth P. Anderson, 2003 (Source:

7 American Academy of Family Physicians (Source:

5 "The Stress Solution: An Action Plan to Manage the Stress in Your Life", Lyle H. Miller, Ph.D., and Alma Dell Smith, Ph.D. (Source:

8 Health Psychology, November 2002 (Source:

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