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Stress Management: Key to Well Being

Published: December 13, 2018

Stress Management: Key to Well-Being

A 2013 study reported 64% of surveyed teens experienced moderate or extreme stress in the past month, and 13% of teens say they experienced extreme stress levels. This statistic is drastically higher than the rates of adults experiencing extreme stress. Stress plays a vital role in our overall well-being. When we think of wellness, we typically think of exercise and nutrition. While fitness and nutrition play an important role in our well-being, wellness encompasses a wide range of factors like our environment, social life and mental health. Stress can come from academic pressure, social groups, families or body image. A moderate amount of stress is normal and promotes problem solving, but excess stress can have a negative impact on our bodies. Stress management is key to improving overall well-being. Here are a few ways to manage stress and promote wellness:

- Exercise or do something active. The American Heart Association calls exercise a “great antidote for stress”.  Exercise encourages a healthy body and mind. 

-Eat well-balanced meals high in fruits and vegetables. Fruits, vegetables and mixed nuts contain vitamins and minerals that protect your body when under stress.

- Limit caffeine. Cortisol is part of the body’s stress response. The Journal of Nutrition found increased levels of cortisol when individuals consumed caffeine. 

- Work in a garden or take a walk outside. 

- Get at least 8-10 hours of sleep per night. This is the recommended amount of sleep for teenagers.

- Meditate or try yoga.

- Practice positive self-talk.

- Plan ahead.

It puts things into perspective to view the body as holistic. Each piece of wellness plays an essential part in our overall health. Exercise, balanced meals, sleep and mental wellness help the body manage stress but also protect the body from chronic disease. Focusing on an overall lifestyle promotes a healthy mind and body. The most effective way to fight stress is with healthy habits. 

Author: Chelsea Johnson, MS, RDN, LDN


*American Heart Association

*American Psychological Association, Frank Pompa for USA Today

*Sleep Foundation

*SF Gate- Healthy Eating


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