Feeling Stressed?

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The following information is from Dr. Elizabeth Wallace, Naturopathic Physician and Licensed Acupuncturist at Zenana Spa and Wellness Center.  After reading Dr. Wallace’s tips, be sure to enter our first giveaway!  (See below)

  Decompress your stress

Stress is defined as a force exerted when one body or body part presses on, pulls on, pushes against, or tends to compress or twist another body or body part causing a deformation- the tension results in a factor that alters an existent equilibrium. How many of us are walking around each day allowing forces to impact our body and interfere with our normal physiological equilibrium? In my practice it is almost 100%, including myself. As I learn to see the body beyond the obvious physical form we see in the mirror, I am able to see these twists and contortions of peoples’ space and bodies, which then affects their thoughts and emotions. Yes, we still have to work hard, maintain our home lives, feed ourselves and take care of those around us. Sometimes this is an insurmountable task, but what if we learn to merely change our perspective throughout the day. Could changing our outlook affect how our body reacts to stress?
To convince you of the importance, let’s first learn what stress does in the body.
What is stress?
  • Stress can be emotional or physical, happy or sad.
  • In response to stress, our nervous system triggers a response by releasing a flood of stress hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol from the adrenal glands, which are essential hormones in the body.
What does stress do to the body?
  • These hormones cause your heart to pump faster and your blood vessels to narrow causing elevated blood pressure.
  • Excessive cortisol also raises blood sugar levels, increases abdominal obesity, increases bone loss, shuts the immune system down, slows wounds healing, causes brain atrophy, thins wrinkled skin, and fluid retention.
  • Emotionally people feel fatigued, irritable, depressed or anxious, have a low libido, insomnia and impaired memory.
  • We are designed for the occasional fight-or-flight response, but the continual exposure to stress in our modern life is now being linked with cancer, ulcers, heart attacks, diabetes, heart disease, skin diseases, and possibly Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and Multiple Sclerosis.
Basically, if you have any symptom or are interested in slowing the ageing process, I suggest you learn how to deal with stress now.
• 43% of adults suffer adverse health effects from stress
• 75-90% of all doctor’s office visits are for stress related complaints
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Your survival kit~ tools to deal with stress

So what to do? Come in and see me. Just kidding.
I do an exercise with my patients, teaching them to be aware of their body and the space around their body. This means that there is an area around you, a bubble at least an arms width all around you and this is your space. This may be hard to do while sitting at your computer, but let’s try. First take a moment to feel your body and imagine that space around you. Now, imagine a time that you felt really good. Take a moment to go back to that time or place and see how your body feels, including the space around your body?
Now imagine a stressful event. How does your body and the space around you feel now? Usually, the space around you constricts and your body feels the effects. So now I have people imagine blowing up the space around them, like a balloon, so they have room to breath and elbow-room to deal with the stressful situation. This works well both in the office and at home with kids. My children have watched me do this and now let me know when they are feeling ‘stressed out’ and need space.
Tools to use for stress:
  • Set an hourly chime on your phone or watch and check in to see what your space/body feels like. Re-establish your space.
  • Drink water and eat a whole foods diet.
  • Avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugary foods as these substances increase your cortisol.
  • Supplements:
    – Fish oil lowers cortisol
    – B vitamins support the nervous system
  • Herbs:
    I use herbs and other supplements that are specific to each person. Whether you need more energizing herbs to support the adrenal glands or more restorative herbs to relax an overactive nervous system, I recommend finding a practitioner to help guide you.
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As I enter my second decade of doctoring, (which really means teaching), I feel the necessity for our whole community to learn how to address our fast-paced, stressful lives. The need is to ensure a healthy body, so that we can spend more of our time and energy on the things we love and truly care about. 

Elizabeth Wallace, N.D., LAc

 Dr. Liz Wallace’s Bio

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Here’s a package Zenana Spa and Wellness Center now offers to help reduce stress for moms with limited time: 

Express Package             
Feeling a bit worn down? Wanting to come in for some nourishing self-care, but worried about being gone too long? This bite-sized package will feed and replenish you perfectly. First, settle in for a Demi Skin Treatment and sink into a lovely state of bliss while our estheticians rejuvenate your skin using Éminence Organic Skin Care products. Follow that up with a personalized Modified Table Massage Session, focusing on releasing baby-holding muscles like your shoulders and neck. Finish up with your choice of an Express Polish for your hands OR feet while you snack on one of our healthy bites so that you leave feeling fresh and reinvigorated…all before your family notices that you were gone!

Remember, nobody’s happy if mama ain’t happy. Zenana Spa and Wellness Center exists to help you feel balanced, and this package is perfect for ANYONE with a busy life.

Demi Skin Treatment
Modified Table Massage Session
Express Polish
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Would you like to win a $30 gift card to Zenana Spa and Wellness Center?  Simply “like” our facebook page:  Full House MOMS on Facebook, “follow” this blog, and “comment” below.  (If you need help or have questions, please email Kim at blogger@fullhousemoms.com.)  We’ll do a drawing from the names & comments below on Sunday at 5:00 PM to find our winner!  Winner must be a FHM Member.