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Recommended Reading: Stress and your health

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Posted by Adrian K under Wellbeing, Yoga on 7 April 2013 at 11:00 PM

Stressful situations and daily pressure is almost unavoidable in modern life, we all experience it to some extent, and the effects of this stress can have a serious impact on your life in terms of your overall health, fitness and well-being. Here are a 5 great articles of recommended reading we’ve found to teach you more about the harmful effects of stress and how you can keep them at bay.

Stress and weight loss

1) This article from Built Lean examines your body's response to stress, and how it could be affecting your weight. 

"You’re probably aware stress contributes to diseases, but did you know that stress is related to 7 of the top 10 killers in the US? Everything from the heart disease and cancer, to diabetes and suicide. In 2011’s APA Stress report, beyond work and family responsibilities, the economy, money worries, and family health problems rounded out the top 5 reasons people cited for stress in their lives."

2) Breaking Muscle have written up a great article about managing your cortisol levels.
Cortisol is the hormone released when you are stressed and could be having a negative effect on your weight loss and fitness goals:

"Whenever we get stressed, the same response that could have once saved our lives kicks in, but as we are not burning this energy off by fighting a sabre-toothed tiger, the additional energy is simply stored as fat."

Use yoga to minimize stress

As a society we are obsessed with health, beauty, and fitness (whatever your definition of fitness is) yet, ironically, it may be our obsession that is holding us back from achieving those goals. We must learn to relax, enjoy our diet, and take pleasure in our training to really get the most out of it. Life is too short to stress, after all.

3) To help keep your stress levels down, try some of these 14 really easy techniques to avoid stress over on GreatistWhether it's just day-to-day routine management or a specifically stressful period of time, these tips are awesome for helping you avoid and diffuse stress to prevent it affecting your health.

4) For more mental tactics read up on “The Art Of Letting Go” which tackles the 5 steps of stress release:

  • Notice why you’re stressed. 
  • Notice what you’re holding onto.
  • Realize that it’s not real. 
  • See that it’s hurting you. 
  • Let go. 

Lying supine twist5) Some physical therapy works great too, try these 3 yoga poses for release and rejuvenation from Yoganonymous:

  • Downward facing dog
  • Pigeon pose
  • Lying supine twist

Yoga is recognised for its stress relieving benefits, these 3 poses are excellent starting blocks to work on your stress relief. Check out this quick yoga sequence designed to release your stress and improve your health:

Vinyasa yoga sequence

Take the Vinyasa yoga sequence and reduce your stress levels today

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