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Stress and Your Health

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Stress and Your Health

Burnout has been defined as a state of mental and/or physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. The physical toll of burnout can be very high, yet it is often overlooked as a key influence on health.

Burnout has been defined as a state of mental and/or physical exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress. The physical toll of burnout can be very high, yet it is often overlooked as a key influence on health.

The adrenal glands are the endocrine organs responsible for the body’s response to stress. Many of the physical effects of stress are due to increased production by the adrenal glands of the hormone cortisol, which can affect everything from blood sugar levels to thyroid hormone production and sleep quality.

Undesirable effects of chronic high stress include blood sugar imbalances; fatigue–especially at midday; carbohydrate cravings; weight gain; insomnia; lowered immunity/increased susceptibility to infections; irritability; dark circles under the eyes; dizziness upon arising; increased environmental sensitivities; and allergies.

Fortunately, there are measures that can be taken to reduce the physical and emotional toll of stress on the body. Stress reduction techniques like meditation, biofeedback, exercising, or yoga are invaluable. In addition, there are several nutritional supplements that can reduce the effects of stress:

  • Relora, a proprietary extract from two plant species that have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for over 1,500 years, Phellodendron amurense and Magnolia officinalis, decreases the stress response and stress-related elevations in cortisol. In addition, Relora helps reduce the craving patterns associated with stress and improves satiety. The recommended dosage of Relora is 250 mg two to three times daily.
  • A quality multiple vitamin/mineral supplement taken daily ensures the many vitamins and minerals that get used up by the adrenal glands are replenished for the body. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for dosage.
  • Vitamin C is an important antistress antioxidant. The most common dosage of vitamin C is 250 mg daily, but doses of up to two grams may be necessary.
  • Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea) is an adaptogen that helps the body adapt to various stressors. It also enhances immunity and memory and improves energy levels. The recommended dosage of rhodiola is 50 to 200 mg two times daily, standardized to contain five percent rosavins per dose.
  • Plant sterols and sterolins act as an immunomodulator, balancing the immune system so that it is ready to fight when needed but is not overstimulated. Plant sterols and sterolins in a ratio of 100:1 have been clinically proven to have immune-balancing effects and can be taken as long as you want to aid your immune system. The recommended dosage is 20 mg sterols and two mcg sterolins, three times daily on an empty stomach.
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