Stress as a Root Cause
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Stress as a Root Cause
Oxidative stress, mental stress, emotional stress, EMF stress, chemical/toxin stress, oh my goodness if there is something out there it stresses the body, right?!
The truth of stress is that we can’t avoid it, and it does have negative effects on our energetic, mental, emotional, and physical well-being. Instead of focusing on how to avoid stress because it is unavoidable, let's take a look at how to mitigate it, how to relieve it, and what aspects of stress your can influence or control.
Today we are talking about stress, what is in your circle of influence and what is in your circle of control and what you can do about it.
Let’s dig in.
Welcome! if this is your first time listening - I’m Audrey Christie - I’m a functional and integrative nurse nutritionist and energy medicine practitioner who helps women heal from chronic illness and autoimmune disease. Helping you to stop chasing symptoms, find your root causes, and heal your body from autoimmune and chronic illness.
Ever heard stress kills?
You have probably heard a million times now - stress. Stress kills. Stress hurts. Stress causes physical health issues...am I right?
And now you're even more stressed because what are you supposed to do about these things? Should you use CBD? Should you drink? Should you exercise? Should you journal? Meditate? Take a supplement? Should you hide in bed?
And if you were to avoid all stress - well I don’t know what if because it just isn’t possible. Looking at all of the science and all of the studies I can say that the best way to deal with stress is to learn a few simple practices.
Most importantly, learn what is in your circle of influence and circle of control. Learn what tools work for you to manage stress when it happens and learn tools to prevent stress. Sounds easy, right? Well, it can be with practice.
Stress in Healthcare
There is not a client or patient that comes to me with a chronic health issue or autoimmune disease that stress does not play a major role in it. It could be something like zapping their immune system, squashing their mitochondrial health (hello fatigue), even preventing them from having normal drainage pathway function - like not having BMs or having a nervous stomach.
You see stress can affect your body, mind, and spirit. Not all stress is bad though - stress acutely is what allows our body to fight, flight, freeze so that you can react appropriately in an emergency. That is the good kind of stress - right?
There was a doc back in 1936, Dr. Hans Selye who said “to be totally without stress is to be dead.” It is kind of a play on words that symbolizes not only that stress is unavoidable but that acute stress is a necessary function of survival.
But stress that keeps hitting our body and mind repeatedly or in a sustained fashion becomes problematic.
Some of the early symptoms of an extended stress response include irritability, headaches, insomnia, and even anxiety and depression. But it doesn’t stop there, the longer your stress-out lifestyle continues the more problems you have, eventually touching every system in your body.
Did you know that 75% of primary care visits are stress-related? Crazy right? I would say in my practice that 100% of my clients have stress as a root cause - but like the doc said back in the 30’s stress is unavoidable.
Let's Build a Stress Toolbox
So let’s build a toolbox, shall we? Because the good news is that there are a lot of lifestyle changes that are very simple and sustainable to add to your toolbox for stress. When combined with a few energetic and micronutrient practices you can lead a really balanced vibe. Which leads to mitigating all of that health drama!
Some of my most recommended stress tools include:
- Meditation. Have you heard me say this a million times? No, it isn’t as easy as some of the other tools that I am going to give you but it has more benefits than anything else I can give you. I have a free meditation guide here no opt-in required. It will get you going in the right direction with the meditation stuff. I also highly recommend Tapping meditations too for acutely stressful situations (works for chronic stress too but if you can try it on acute stress - see the benefits then it will be your new fav. You can check out The Tapping Solution app and follow along for big benefits.
- Ashwagandha. Love love loves some plant power here. Ashwagandha is an adaptogen. Adaptogen supplements are natural herbs that help your body adapt to stressors in your environment. It was a wide set of benefits and has a really long history of being safe and effective. Only in recent history has it made it through the rigors of a clinical trial. In 2017 a study showed that ashwagandha reduces the effect of stress on the brain and body, but also helps to stop food cravings related to stress.
- Strain-specific CBD. Forget your grandma’s random CBD blend - have you tried strain-specific CBD? It is amazing! There is literally a plant for everyone. Trouble focusing? There’s a strain for that. Trouble sleeping? There’s a strain for that. If your CBD oil doesn’t taste like the plant it is derived from - you’re not taking the right stuff.
- Get outside. We know, beyond a shadow of a doubt that going outside reduces stress and inflammation, especially when you kick off your shoes and get in touch with the earth. You can add in all sorts of fancy things to this but just getting outside can also do the trick.
- Unplug. Step away from TikTok and Instagram, get off of Facebook, close the laptop. Technology is such a beautiful gift but we have to know when to turn it off - and the reality is that being connected 24/7 does not serve your health and does not serve your stress.
- Move. It doesn’t have to be anything athletic, some simple stretches and breathwork all the way to running. Movement releases endorphins, which are natural compounds in your body that reduce stress and pain. You don’t have to do strenuous or intense workouts to experience this benefit.
Now there is a catch here, because in order for these 6 items to work - you have to use them. And it can take a little bit to get into your awareness space so that you recognize what triggers a stress response in you and recognize that you can use these tools. If you have a partner - definitely get them on board to help guide you.
You will notice something is missing here - one of my recommendations that helps with just about everything. Eat more plants. And it isn’t that it won’t help - because it will - eating plants also helps your endocannabinoid system (yep that same one CBD does) BUT if you are in a state of chronic stress that is having major impacts on your health then you aren’t digesting what you eat properly REGARDLESS of how good it is for you. So my advice is to work on this first THEN work on the nutrition aspect. Sure make good choices when you can but don’t add to your stress level here. (include rest and digest in audio and video)
More questions about stress?
If you have more questions about stress and healing from the root cause of what you are going through I would love to have join us in the Wellness Circle, my exclusive and free community to help women pursuing holistic wellness, body, mind, and spirit and discussions around the Root Cause Revolution Podcast and even some free office hours on Fridays to get your private questions answered - friends chronic disease is a preventable and autoimmune disease is capable of being healed or put in remission (and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise you deserve to feel good!) You can get the direct link on the show notes page or at audreychristie.com/facebook
To wrap this up - Stress is unavoidable so you have to have the tools to cope, mitigate, and have a healthy stress response.
Remember that I am always rooting for you, friend and I am so grateful for you listening! See you next time!