Stress and anxiety go hand in hand. Addressing those physical stress signs for women is an important part of forging a healthy holistic lifestyle.
When we are under stress, there is a domino effect of chemical reactions in the body that cause our entire nervous system to feel shaken up.
There are also a whole host of physical stress signs for women that can show up before you may even realize just how much stress you are under.
These physical discomforts may seem like a mystery in terms of why you’re having them, It is common to mistake the symptoms of stress to mean something is really wrong, but in most cases, it is your body signaling that there is something happening that is causing high levels of stress.You may wish to see your health care practitioners to first rule out any true medical issues.
There are many easy and natural ways to manage stress signs for women so that you can feel empowered to build a plan for prevention and relief.
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Top Tips for addressing some of the physical stress signs for women
1. Handling Headaches
Headaches often have biological reasons including food allergies or hormone imbalance and interestingly those factors can also one of the many stress signs for women.
Special Neck Stretches
- When stressful events or situations arise, we often automatically, naturally tighten our muscles, This is a natural reaction for the body because when our ancestors realized a grizzly bear was chasing them they needed those muscles to tighten in order to run fast or climb a tree. But muscle tension in the neck and shoulders (where a lot of us carry our stress) can cause terrible headache pain. Try gentle neck stretches on a regular basis.
Consider Food Sensitivity
- Turn to your nutritional choices. Keep a detailed food journal to track what you are taking in and any symptoms that show up.
A Natural Muscle and Joint Rub Product
- A particular blend of the essential oils can be rubbed into the back of the neck, shoulders, the collar bone area and upper chest to invite release and relief of tight muscles. This is my favorite muscle rub product.
Plenty of H²O
- Staying hydrated is an important way to ensure proper circulation and head off headaches at the pass. Studies have shown drinking plenty of water can relieve headache symptoms if you have early signs of dehydration within 30 minutes to three hours.
- B-complex vitamins contain all eight of the B vitamins and are a safe, cost-effective way to naturally help prevent and treat some headache symptoms. Read the science here.
2. Mitigating Muscle Pain
As mentioned above, muscle tension is one of the common stress signs for women. You can develop chronic pain in your muscles throughout your body. As a yoga instructor over the past 20+ years I can share with you that most people don’t have awareness of their muscle tension until they are in so much pain they feel desperate for relief.
Scan for Tension
- My top tip, especially for women over age 40, is to make it a practice of tuning in to your body, scanning for even mild levels of tension before it develops into pain. Chances are you are feeling stressed from pressures in your life and work and you are staying in particular physical positions for too long. This can cause serious damage to your muscles and your joints over time.
Take Breaks From Sitting
- Set a timer for 30 minutes when you sit down to work and when the timer goes off, get up, stretch in all directions and go for a 1 minute brisk walk around the room or better yet step outside for some fresh air, look up at the clouds and the tree tops to stretch your neck and go for a 5 minute quick walk swinging your arms.
- We all know regular exercise is recommended. Create a daily routine that includes regular consistent stretching before and after your strengthening or cardio exercise. Try gentle yoga postures in the morning taking your time, breathing slowly and deeply as you stretch.
- The right kind of magnesium can help your muscles naturally relax. Try an Epsom Salt Bath, soaking in the tub for 20-20 minutes with 1-2 cups of these salts dissolved into your very warm bath water. You also can take a chelated magnesium glycenate in capsule form or you can try this magnesium citrate supplement called Calm dissolved into warm water before bed time.
3. Ease Irritable Bowel Syndrome
One of the stress signs for women shows up in the gut. It was found that irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects 51% of women in a 2007 research study. IBS can be very painful and inconvenient. There is cramping, diarrhea, sometimes constipation and is often tied to stress. If you have noticed that you can’t eat your favorite foods, or you find yourself in the bathroom more often than normal, you may have IBS.
Identify Food Sensitivities
- Completely eliminate what nutrition experts say are the most common food allergens for a three month period. Those food allergens are dairy, yeast, gluten eggs, corn, soy, and peanuts. After the 3 month period, slowly reintroduce one food per week to detect which cause symptoms. When I eliminated all of these foods for just one week I noticed relief from my own IBS symptoms which showed me I definitely have food sensitivities and this realization helped me to begin a detective pursuit for answers.
Try Digestive Enzymes
- Assist your digestive system by introducing enzymes before you take your meals which may help ease your IBS symptoms of gas and bloating.
Eat Fermented Foods for Good Gut Bacteria
- These foods contain all the healthy bacteria your intestines need for proper digestion. Try kombucha drinks, sauerkraut, or kimchi.
- Scientific studies show mindfulness meditation helps alleviate symptoms of IBS in women. Go here to watch my meditation instruction video and read about the benefits.
4. Eliminate Insomnia
Between hormone imbalance that comes along with mid-life and phases of menopause and the pressures and worries of life, insomnia is another of the stress signs for women. And when your sleep is disrupted exhaustion further stresses your mind and body. Ensuring a good night’s sleep and eradicating insomnia requires some dedicated practices. Here are just a few of my top tips.
Create Rhythm and Routine:
- Our minds and bodies prefer predictable rhythm and when we get out of our routine it can cause stress. Likewise, the stresses of life can throw us off rhythm. Consciously create a schedule that allows you to observe a specific sleep-prep routine by winding down your day an hour earlier than you normally do to build in time for your mind and body to slip into sleep. Observe your commitment to this schedule and guard it with your life.
Turn Off Electronics
- Keep them out of the bedroom and stop looking at all screens one hour prior to bed time. The light emitted from screens activates your brain possibly producing a boost in cortisol which keeps you alert.
Get Hydration In Before 7 pm
- You do need to make sure you are consuming plenty of water during the day but try to get it in before dinner and then have a cup of soothing organic herbal tea after dinner to begin winding down your mind and body for the day. If you drink a lot of fluids right before bed time you’ll be awakened by a full bladder.
Keep Room Cool & Dark
- It’s been shown in studies that we sleep better when the temp is cooler as long as you have appropriate covers. And be sure any light sources are turned off or covered well.
Calm Your Cortisol Levels
- There are certain herbs shown to calm the activating chemical often known as the stress hormone called cortisol. Here is one product called Cortisol Manager that I have had good result with, taken after dinner with my night time tea.
Don’t Toss & Turn
- If you find yourself waking between 2 and 4 am experts say this is related to your cortisol and possibly blood sugar levels. Don’t stay in bed tossing and turning if you’re full awake. Go to another dark room and sit up in the dark and try to do some deep slow breathing before returning to bed. Otherwise your frustration with inability to sleep will only cause more stress keeping you more awake.
Addressing the stress signs for women requires an action plan!
Creating an active plan for consciously relaxing your body and mind is so very important for your health. It’s important to have a PLAN you can follow for your self-care.
Contact me to discuss your self care needs and how I might help you create your personalized plan.