Don't Let Stress Mess with Your Looks
If you’re one of the lucky ones living on a secluded island, where it’s quiet, calm, and always perfect, OR you never have worry about your health, money, job or, um life… you probably don’t have a lot of stress.
But in case you haven’t noticed – and we’re betting you have – stress is a reality of everyday life.
There are so many things that go on around us (both good and bad) that stress your body. Think about it: There’s environmental stress, like loud noises (even the alarm clock that wakes you up can be a stressor), pollution, weather extremes or the radiation from the sun. There’s physical stress, like chronic illness and pain, and then there’s social stress, like divorce, death and relationships.
What’s happening behind the scenes of stress? Your body lets loose a combination of nerve and hormonal signals, prompting your adrenal glands to let loose a flood of hormones like adrenaline and cortisol, messing with all your body’s normal processes.
Stress doesn’t discriminate – it’s a full-body employer; but you don’t have to make it a “full-time” one.
It’s no surprise that left unchecked, stress takes a huge toll, not only on your mental state – causing things like anxiety, depression, insomnia, eating disorders, headaches and more - but on your physical state, as well.
Here’s How Stress Hurts Your Looks:
- Aggravates conditions like psoriasis, eczema and rosacea
- Causes rashes and/or hives
- Triggers cold sores, or fever blisters
- Makes your skin break out (cortisol triggers the glands in your skin to produce more oil)
- Leads to tired and dull-looking skin
- Causes fine lines and dry skin
- Contributes to hair loss
You can learn how to take good care of your skin; how to minimize those bags under your eyes and find 50 ways to brighten your complexion.
But before you do that, it’s a good idea to learn how to handle (and manage) the stress that is affecting your looks.
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
Include lots of fresh fruits and veggies in your diet. This is important, since chronic stress can weaken your immune system and ability to fight disease.
2. Get Regular Exercise
Exercise releases endorphins – the body’s natural painkillers- which can, in turn, help reduce stress. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate activity each week, or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity (or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity).
3. Get Enough Sleep
Experts recommend seven to nine hours for optimal health benefits. Stress can cause insomnia and sleeplessness; on the flip side, being tired can increase stress.
4. Practice Relaxation Techniques
Yoga, deep breathing, stretching or meditation are all proven to help manage and relieve stress.
5. Get a Massage
Studies have found massage beneficial to treat and reduce stress, anxiety, insomnia and headaches. And it feels good, too!
6. Get Social
Research finds healthy friendships, and just getting out and socializing can boost your happiness and reduce stress.
7. Find Opportunities to Laugh
It’s no joke: laughter activates and relieves your stress response, soothes tension and boosts your intake of oxygen-rich air which pumps up endorphins released by your brain.
Knowing how to manage stress is one of life’s necessary lessons – one that, once learned, can help you live as healthy and beautiful a life as possible!