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Still Complaining about Stress?

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Still Complaining about Stress?

Let’s do something about it!
Anna Magee
Anna Magee More by this author
Feb 05, 2012 at 09:00 AM

It’s no secret that stress isn’t healthy. This epidemic of the modern world is an underlying cause of low energy, loss of sex drive, depression, tooth-grinding, high blood pressure, skin problems, infertility and insomnia. What is perhaps more staggering is how bad we are at dealing with stress: 12.8 million working days are lost to stress every year and 1.5 million people in the UK are dependent on benzodiazepines (highly addictive anti-anxiety drugs whose brand names include Ativan, Valium, Mogadon and Lubrium). Although almost all of us complain about feeling stressed at work, one study found nearly a quarter take no breaks, and a third turn to comfort eating and extreme dieting to cope. Now, mounting evidence has shown that one of the most insidious side-effects of chronic stress is weight gain. Excess stress hormones in the body encourage fat storage, especially that hardest-to-shift type – weight around the middle. Quite simply, in a stressed body most diets are doomed to fail.

The De-stress Diet, based on nutritional therapy used successfully with hundreds of stressed, overweight people, as well as a strong body of scientific research, resets this system in your favor. It will show you calming techniques, targeted nutrition and intelligent exercise to alleviate stress and help you release excess weight and keep it off. We call it ‘Slim and Calm Living’.

Here are a few to get you started:

Pleasure Matters

We now know that it is the rich sense memories that come from feeling better – not extreme diets – that make people stick with healthy lifestyles. Sense memories are the clear associations between change and feeling better that our bodies remember and that give us both a reason and the motivation to keep up. By bringing you a complete program with not only physical but also emotional benefits, you will have a powerful reason to stick with it long term and you will see knock-on results in the way you look. Ultimately, this is about living as Nature intended – with plenty of sunlight, touch, sex, laughter, movement and high-quality food – to reach our highest levels of stress-free, pleasurable health and weight success.

Know Yourself (and the ‘Stress Suit’ You’re Wearing)

When stress is long term and chronic, varying symptoms develop depending on body make-up. One person might break out in hives while another becomes hyper-manic. This is the specific ‘Stress Suit’ he or she wears. In Chapter 2 of The De-Stress Diet, you can do a quiz to find out which suit you’re wearing at any given time. We also encourage you to try the advice and suggestions in our book for a few weeks – at least – and see what works for you by feeling and observing the way your body reacts in terms of energy, mood, sleep quality and weight. Through this increased self-awareness you will discover the fundamental lifestyle and diet principles that work for you – not your friend, partner or know-it-all work colleague – by feeling their effects. This is about getting in touch with how your body feels and your intuition, so you can understand what you need as an individual. That makes it much more likely you’ll stick to it.

Rest, Not Just Sleep

One of the most important – and compulsory – aspects of De-Stressing is rest. According to physiologists who study them, hunter-gatherers would have had high-activity days followed by low-activity days. This would have reduced the likelihood of crippling injuries and given the body a chance to recharge itself. Yet in the modern world we go on and on and on with less sleep and rest than we need. Whether it’s the exercise we do or the stress we’re exposed to, we are best genetically suited to a variety of activities performed intermittently and with different levels of intensity, with adequate rest in between to ensure mind and body recovery.

About Author
Anna Magee
Anna Magee is a multi-award winning health journalist whose clients include Marie Claire, the Daily Mail, The Sun, Woman & Home and Grazia. She is the Wellbeing Editor of Sainsbury's Magazine and the former Health Di Continue reading