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Saturday, 18 January 2020

Your way out of: STRESS part I

In this three-part series, Ahram Online speaks with experts on changes you might be experiencing during these tumultuous times in Egypt under curfew

Ingy Deif, Wednesday 21 Aug 2013
photo: Reuters
Views: 1437
Views: 1437

As stress and anxiety mount, people get depressed and sleep deprived. Top that with a curfew and you have the shortest path to piling on extra weight!

Ahram Online talks to experts about ways to counter the stress, lower anxiety levels, improve your sleep in times of distress - and avoid the inevitable extra kilograms that come along with indulging in comfort food!

Life Coach Consultant Hala Khattar says stress is like cancer; at first it is hidden and silent until it takes control over the wellbeing of the rest of the body. She gives the following advice:

Learn the art of breathing deeply, whether it's through mild meditation or through yoga, which focuses on breathing and helps relieve stress.

Don't obsess and let your mind out a bit
Turn off the television for longer periods of time. Same applies for social networking. Instead, call or meet with relatives and friends. And remember: life doesn’t revolve around politics, so talk about other subjects!

Find your release
Some people feel better by finding a way to release and soothe their stress a bit.

Some find it helpful to engage in a sport or activity that involves vigorous exercise, like any kind of martial art or competitive sport.

If you are one of those who suffer in silence, try jotting down your thoughts either daily or a few times a week. Writing about what stresses you out has been noted to relieve stress.

Every now and then try to engage in a new hobby or try out an adventure, this works miracles in relieving stress.

Treat yourself
Something else to try every now and again: treating yourself to something either soothing, such as a massage or a scented bath at home, or anything else that feels like you are rewarding yourself after a busy schedule. This not only motivates you to accomplish, but also recharges your batteries.

Furry friends
Get a companion of another kind: a pet! Those who tried this know that it is valuable advice, since it has been proven that the companionship, caring for and enjoying their simple actions relieves stress to the extent of even elongating lives and keeping at bay the risks of stress-related diseases, such as heart attacks.

Eat for a good mood
What you eat could make a big difference, so eat whole grain carbohydrates by themselves without fats or proteins to provide your brain with what it needs to produce the mood-improving tryptophan.

Melatonin found in some kinds of food, like walnuts and dried cherries, act as an anti-stress ingredient. Some doctors also might recommend pills containing this element before sleeping, as it is natural and safe and its sedative components reduce stress.

It is ok to say "no"
It is perfectly ok to say "no" every now and then if you don’t feel capable or the urge to do what being is asked from you. Think of a "no" as simply being honest with yourself and others, rather than thinking that "no" is a rejection.


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