Why Stress is Deadlier for Women & 5 Tips to Help Reduce It
These days, we all have stress. Whether it’s because we are overworked, caring for a loved one, trying to meet a deadline, having money issues or any other number of stressful situations, stress is not good for any of us.
The way we handle stress is a very innate, human response. As we perceive stress, our “flight or flight” response produces adrenaline to help us handle the issue. In situations of “life or death,” this works well, but our lives are not geared toward life or death situations very often any more.
Think about how things were many years ago when the men were hunters and gatherers and the women took care of the children and the home. Given the “fight or flight” situations this would put men in, you can start to see why men are more equipped to handle stress than women.
A study conducted at Duke University School of Medicine conferred that women don’t handle stress in the same way that men do, and specifically that they don’t tend to handle it as well as men do. It was found that women were more likely than men to experience decreased blood flow to the heart (a major contributor of heart disease) as well as blood clotting, negative feelings and more difficulty monitoring their emotions.[i]
By better managing stress, women can learn to mentally and physically respond differently to stress. Here are some tips that can help women reduce stress starting today:
1) Meditate – Numerous studies have shown that taking even 5-10 minutes to quietly go within can dramatically help you handle stress. It seems crazy to many people, but the science is there! These trials that were published in JAMA Internal Medicine, for example, found that meditation is quite effective at easing stress, anxiety, depression and pain.[ii]
2) Nutrition – When we eat nutritious foods, we support the body so that it can respond to stress in a healthier way. When you’re stressed, instead of reaching for comfort foods, turn to whole foods that are high in nutritional content, like fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds.
3) Supplements – By supplementing your diet with nutrients that support the body’s stress response, you provide the support it needs to handle what comes its way. Nutrition is important but it isn’t always enough. Supplements that contain the B vitamins, magnesium, maca and rhodiola are some of the best stress fighters. Try Erba Vita No Stress, which contains all of these herbs and more.
4) Exercise – When we move our bodies, we help our bodies rid themselves of toxins and we get our blood pumping and our systems functioning optimally. From this state, stress is handled much easier.
5) Sleep – Getting quality rest is one of the easiest ways to ensure that you are mentally and physically up for whatever comes your way. A tired mind and body is already stressed before anything stressful even happens. If sleep doesn’t come easily to you, don’t turn to sleeping pills, which can put your body under more stress and cause dependencies; instead, try a natural, melatonin supplement like Erba Vita Sleep.
[i] https://www.dtmi.duke.edu/news-publications/stress-may-be-harder-on-womens-hearts-than-mens [ii] http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1809754