If you’re an athlete, you’d understand how stress can affect your mood, performance, and even health. Here’s the scary part: Long-lasting or frequent mental stress will increase your blood pressure, which in turn, elevates your risk for stroke and heart disease. Sometimes stress can even affect the immune system’s response to infections!
Don’t worry, here are three easy tips to help you manage stress.
Tip #1 - Don’t avoid it, try to work with it.
It has actually been proven that a certain amount of stress could actually be beneficial to an athlete because it can help with the focus and can even give an extra boost of energy. So how can you handle it without getting rid of it?
Easy, just make sure that your outside life is filled with pleasures that are stress-free; try to get sufficient amount of rest, think positively, laugh as much as you can and continue to build up your social relationships!
One big problem that athletes often encounter is getting trained too quickly and in the most disciplined way people could ever imagine. Allow your body to slowly adjust to the training whose progress should really be gradual. Before increasing the load, ask yourself whether your body is ready and whether it is handling the current one with no difficulties. By giving your body enough time, you’ll be managing stress properly.
Tip #2 – Load up with Superfoods!
Superfoods are foods filled with countless health benefits. The ones that could help you destress include dark green leafy veggies, berries, and…dark chocolates!
An example of dark leafy greens is spinach. This type of veggie is usually rich in folate which promotes the production of mood regulators like serotonin and dopamine. One study even found that those who ate the most folate had a lower risk of depression!
Now everyone knows that berries are superfoods. Blueberries and blackberries especially, contain anthocyanins which are antioxidants that help your brain produce dopamine.
If you’re constantly stressed, keep a bar of pure dark chocolate because the moment you get a piece of it down your belly, it can start helping your brain to produce anandamide. This is a neurotransmitter that can temporarily block any feelings of pain or depression!
Tip #3 - Take advantage of curcumin!
The most popular way of managing stress nowadays is through the consumption of curcumin. Yes, it is a substance found in turmeric and is what gives it the bright yellow colour! In India, turmeric is regarded as a holy powder because it could possibly increase your resistance to infection. Now this spice, regarded as a superfood, has been found to help with stress!
In your body:
- It could help neutralize harmful compounds that stress your cells
- It helps keep your cells’ integrity when environmental stressors are present.
In other words, turmeric is not only a superfood, it is an adaptogen that balances your body’s inner state. It helps strengthen your body’s response against stress while providing immune system support. If you’re constantly under a lot of stress, try taking some turmeric (but always consult your physician to see if this is really for you). The benefits of turmeric don’t stop there. It can even help your overall health, including your eyes, bones and joints, circulatory and even your neurological system! Got irregular blood sugar levels? Turmeric may just be what you need to maintain them!
So where can you find this holy spice?
You can of course, find this superfood in the spice aisle of your grocery store but you really have no way of knowing its quality. Instead, try some reputable health supplements that have turmeric as their main ingredient. This is how you can spice up your life...stress-FREE!