When life gets hectic and a bit out of control, it just takes a few bad things to happen to spiral into the deep dark holes of our minds. When you spiral out of control, it’s hard to get out of the spin. Taking control of your lifestyle habits could be the answer to surviving tough circumstances.
If you make just a few lifestyle changes, you could help reduce anxiety and depression or simply diminish it all together.
For some it may take just a tweak to existing habits, for other it may require a bit more work. All the items below can be done by many of us, so you should be considering these if your commonly in the dumps.
Get rid of the crap food
We all must eat and it’s mostly our choice what we put in our mouth. If we make the right choices, it can benefit our mental state. Science has now proven that our guts contain 100 million neurons which is why they call it the second brain.
Cut or reduce refined sugar from your diet is the most effective away to reduce inflammation in our body, get hormones running the way they should and improve gut microbial system. This correlates directly to our mood and brain function.
So, remove candy, ice cream and sodas from the menu!
Increase foods with omega-3s and omega-6s are fatty acids. This includes olive oil, nuts, seeds and some fish like Salmon. A few studies have indicated that depressed people have lower omega-3 fatty acid levels than people who are not depressed.
Reduce processed grains like bread or pasta and replace them with safe starch vegetables like sweet potato and other fibrous vegetables like broccoli and spinach. In Dr Prerlmutter’s best seller, Grain Brain, he deeply explains how grains are effecting our brain through certain toxicities.
Staying hydrated helps flush toxins out of our body but as the mass of the brain is made up of water, it insures that the brain is firing on all cylinders.
Our body makes natural anti-depressants when we exercise by stimulating the body to produce endorphins and serotonin. These chemicals in our brains, when naturally occurring, boost mood, reduce stress hormones like cortisol and help improve restful sleep.
The Mayo Clinic suggest 30 minutes a day of regular exercise. I have had amazing results with 10-15 minutes of very high intensity exercise about 3-4 days per week.
If you’re not into lifting weights or high intensity body weight exercises, try long walks in nature, body stretches and yoga like exercises. For some excellent yoga resources, head over to mylifewithyoga.com.
Meditation and stress reduction
Of course, at meditsounds.com we highly praise the benefits of meditation, not just to improve mental health but as a general stress reduction exercise that effects the whole body.
A Havard study 2011 had participants perform 8 weeks of meditation with an MRI done before and after the 8-week period. These scans found that participants physically reduced density of the grey matter in the Amygdale area of the brain, which directly correlates to reducing stress levels and anxiety.
Other techniques to reduce negative stress is to incorporate mindfulness practices into everyday life activities. This can be done while walking, eating or breathing. Check out this information on mindfulness practices.
Just get more sleep
Yep…. put down the device and turn off the damn lights! Some sleep specialist say, if we all just got a full night deep sleep, we could probably cure most of our ailments.
Lying awake in bed with our minds pumped up and unable to calm down is a common and complicated symptom of depression. The less you sleep, the more fatigued you feel.
If you’ve tried all these tips and are still stuck, try some of these natural supplements to help push along body into relaxation mode.
Start being grateful
When you’re feeling depressed, down and stressed, it’s hard to be grateful for anything. But, employing a regular gratitude practice, will help you to naturally be thankful for even the smallest things in life we might take for granted.
I use a gratitude journal each morning and sometimes in the evening (if I remember to) to write something I’m grateful for. This could be as simple as I’m grateful for my coffee in the morning, or I slept all night as the kids didn’t wake me up, to important things like, I’m grateful that I can walk or see and do so many great things in life. I grateful for my family, friends, that I have job, it could be anything.
It’s the feeling of appreciation that one has, which helps cultivate a natural state of mind in gratitude. Always looking for the best part of what to many would believe is a bad situation is an amazing talent and will ensure you will always have extraordinary experiences.
I have been using this state of mind for a while now, it has profoundly transformed my life to rid of stress and anxiety. I’ve have never felt happier and healthier.
I hope all of you benefit from these simple lifestyle changes (if you not already). I can vouch that incorporating these aspects into your daily life is not difficult once they become habits.
Do you have any tips or success stories how you have reduced depression or anxiety? Please add your comments.
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