Decoding the Science of Stress

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We all know that stress is like that unwanted guest who just won’t leave. But fear not because, armed with the right tools, you can show stress the exit door!

Let’s start by understanding what goes on inside our bodies when stress comes knocking. Picture this: your body has this big autonomic nervous system with two main players — the sympathetic nervous system (aka the fight or flight mode) and its chill counterpart, the parasympathetic nervous system (or the rest and relax mode).

When stress hits, the sympathetic system goes into overdrive, gearing you up to either fight that bear (metaphorically speaking, of course) or run for the hills. It does this by pumping out lots of adrenaline and cortisol.

Now, adrenaline is like the quick-acting hero that gets your heart racing and your body sweating. Cortisol, on the other hand, is like the sneaky villain who sticks around longer, keeping you in a state of perpetual stress. This constant cortisol release can mess with your brain, degrade muscle tissue, and basically turn you into a big ball of stress.

Enter the parasympathetic system, the peacekeeper, the bringer of calm! This system releases the feel-good hormones – serotonin, oxytocin, & dopamine – that help you chill out, lower your heart rate, and think more clearly.

Understanding how your body responds to stress and the power of activating your parasympathetic nervous system is key to reclaiming your peace of mind. Remember, it’s all about finding what works best for you and making self-care a non-negotiable part of your day.

Whether it’s deep breathing exercises, mindfulness practices, or simply taking a moment to pause & reset, incorporating some stress-reducing practices into your daily routine can work wonders for your mental health & well-being. Stress may be a part of life, but with the right tools & mindset, you can keep it in check and live your best, stress-free life!


What is your go-to to lessen stress? Let us know in our inclusive health & wellness community on Facebook!

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