Stress, Nutrition, And Your Overall Health
COVID-19 has forced us to all make a lot of changes in our lives. These changes can lead to increased stress. How is this increased stress affecting your overall health? Increased stress can not only increase cortisol, your body’s natural stress hormone—usually reserved for your fight-or-flight response—but it can also impact your digestive system. Stress can disrupt the healthy bacteria that live in your gut, known as your gut microbiome. This bacteria is there to aid in digestion and when disrupted, can lead to gastrointestinal symptoms as well as an increase in inflammation throughout the body. Increased inflammation can cause increased stress, increased aches and pains, and emotional imbalances.
What you eat can have a significant impact on your gut health and therefore, on your stress levels. Foods that are beneficial for gut health and for aiding in decreasing inflammation in the body include berries, lean proteins, nuts, high fiber foods, and fermented foods. In addition to adding these healthy food options into your diet, it is important to avoid foods that disrupt gut health and promote stress and inflammation. Some examples of what to avoid include added sugar, artificial sweeteners, and fried foods.
Promoting Your Overall Health in Rockville MD
Supplements are another easy way to get some additional nutritional value to promote overall health. Turmeric can help improve the gut microbial environment, decrease inflammation by inhibiting inflammatory pathways, and can help decrease cortisol levels to aid in stress relief. Omega-3 fatty acids are also anti-inflammatory and can promote healthy cell membranes.
With all the changes we are facing in this pandemic, it is important to focus on small, sustained changes as to not become overwhelmed. Small, incremental changes also increase our chances of success in maintaining lifestyle changes. In addition to diet, you can also incorporate exercise into your routine. Light cardiovascular exercise, such as walking or yoga, help keep the body moving and reduce stress levels. Finding ways to stay active will also help with small aches and pains most of us are feeling from having to adjust to spending more time at and working from home. Chiropractic care or nutritional recommendations are also available at Rosa Chiropractic and Physical Therapy Center in Rockville, MD. Dr. Campbell is available to help guide you through these lifestyle changes and support your overall health with nutritional advice and chiropractic care. Call today to make an appointment to see how we can work together to improve your health during these challenging times!