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!
Dr Abdel Hadi Misbah professor of immunology and fellow professor of The American Academy of Immunology also has some words of advice related to his field:
"The link between stress or anxiety and the deterioration of a person's immunity level as well as the occurrence of depression is well established."
Dr Misbah advocates the benefits of what therapists call "mature coping mechanisms" in which people find comfort and serenity in the face of stresses and misfortunes through a deeper understanding of what life is all about and an appreciation of what is truly important, which is attained – primarily in our societies - through faith.
He also stresses that simple, yet utterly true fact that laughter reduces the level of stress hormones and gives the immunity a boost by increasing the antibodies and infection-fighting T-cells. Finally Dr Misbah stresses that there isn't a simpler, more attainable technique of combating stress than having a regular deep sleep.
In order to attain the required level of sleep regarding quality and quantity, the following is recommended:
Go to bed only when you are sleepy
Don't go to bed unless you have the urge to sleep, and if you are not asleep within thirty minutes, leave your bed and get yourself engaged in some other activity, provided that it doesn't involve acute concentration or over excitement.
Try to set a fixed time to getting into and out of bed. Your bed is for sleeping, not reading or watching television, and don't lay there for long after you wake up.
A bit of space science involved
Try to orient your sleeping position so that your head points to the north and feet to the south as this comes in harmony with the magnetic field of the earth, providing the body with maximum energy and helping to achieve a higher level of comfort and relaxation.
Clear your mind before going to bed
Avoid watching television at least half an hour before going to bed, limit your exposure to talk shows. Reading should be restricted to uncomplicated materials.
Avoid all kinds of caffeine in beverages or chocolate six hours before retiring.
Set a good temperature in the bedroom, and take a short, warm bath an hour or two before sleeping, also relaxation techniques such as yoga, relaxing (not stimulating) massages after hectic days also help.
Milk, herbal drinks
Calcium and tryptophan in a hot glass of milk can induce sleep and relaxation, in addition to other soothing herbal drinks
One of the biggest mistakes is taking sleeping pills or sedatives on regular basis, a doctor must keep track of your consumption to avoid total reliance.
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