September, or should we say “Stresstember,” can be one of the most anxiety-inducing months of the year. A few reasons include the shift in routine occurring with kids returning to school, weather changes causing seasonal depression, or the feeling of the need to “get back to work” after “taking it easy” over the summer.
Thankfully, there are ways to combat and manage the acute stress that comes with these changes. Adapting your diet, sleep habits, and making positive shifts in your behaviors are just a few measures you can take which can have integral effects on stress levels. Here’s the rundown on why these methods work.
- A healthy diet can improve your immune system, which then represses stress hormones. Key nutrients to incorporate in your diet to modulate these hormones are Vitamin C and magnesium.
- In sleeping, adults should aim to get seven or more hours of sleep per night. Getting enough sleep allows the brain to recharge in order to better regulate mood, sharpen decision making, and improve your concentration. Simply, the brain and body can better handle stress if well rested.
- Transforming your mindset to a positive one is the most uncomplicated action you can take and likely the most influential. Navigating each day of your life with an optimistic outlook and taking a positive approach to challenges presented can decrease the stress you feel, ultimately improving your well-being.
Lindy Callahan, PT, DPT