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5 ways to lower stress naturally

Stashed in: Sleep!, Stress, Awesome, Microbiome, Microbiome

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A healthy microbiome correlates with less stress.

Optimize gut health. Stress plays more of a role in gut health than you might realize. One study showed stress-induced prolonged combat-training increases intestinal permeability (more commonly called leaky gut). Chronic stress can also contribute to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and numerous other gastrointestinal conditions. Repopulating healthy microorganisms with a probiotic supplement is among my gut-healing protocol. One study found stress suppressed inflammasome, required to maintain healthy gut flora. In this mice study, probiotics reversed that detrimental effect.

Sufficient sleep correlates with less stress.

Get 7 – 9 hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep. I’ve written about seven hormones that become out of whack with too little sleep. On a practical level, sleep deprivation makes morning rush hour traffic miserable as you imagine your boss reprimanding you for being late while devouring your third dark roast. Frustrating episodes throughout your sleep-deprived day become monumental events that leave you even more stressed. A chicken-or-egg cycle ensues as stress cuts into your sleep. Among other problems, studies show chronic stress and sleep loss increase your risk for depression and other mood disorders. Make time for seven to nine hours of high quality, uninterrupted sleep every night. You'll find you're more productive and capable of rolling with whatever stress the following day throws at you.

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