Not all stress is bad. In small amounts, stress can be a good thing. It can help give your mind and body a little boost to make it through the day. This was especially important for our ancestors who relied on surges of stress to hunt wild animals, find sources of food, and survive.
It’s only when we’re in a constant state of stress that it becomes a serious problem.
What Chronic Stress Does to Your Body
From depression and heart disease to autoimmune conditions and pain, chronic stress can cause serious and lasting damage to your body. It’s said that up to 90% of all visits to the doctor office are related to stress.
If you’re dealing with stress, then it’s critical to find healthy ways to manage it before it damages your body. This is particularly true for patients suffering from fibromyalgia, a medical condition that involves chronic pain. In one study, researchers found that stress and negative thoughts may actually cause painful flare ups for fibromyalgia patients. If you find yourself frequently stressed out, make sure to talk to your fibromyalgia doctor.
How to Manage Stress
Stress can be effectively managed through diet, nutritional supplementation, exercise, and lifestyle changes such as:
- Practicing meditation
- Consuming healthy whole foods
- Going for a walk through a park
- Avoiding caffeine
Nutritional supplements that may help with stress include ashwagandha, lemon balm, and L-theanine.
Regardless of why you’re stressing, it’s important to learn how to cope and manage your stress before it leads to health problems down the road.