Let’s a have a quick look at the anatomy of stress or any other mind/body issue that somebody can experience. Stress and anxiety doesn’t just appear out of nowhere although it does feel like it for most of us, but it actually starts with an over-stimulation of the nervous system that has lost its connection with other systems in the body. We do need that stimulation that energy of the sympathetic nervous system in case we are in danger and we have to act quickly and run from the situation for example. But our lives are not as such that we experience danger all the time.
Let’s say that energy is not being transformed and used the nervous system gets overwhelmed and symptoms like anxiety, shortness of breath, increased heart rate, chest tightening, excessive sweating can start to manifest. We need to attend to the physical symptoms and give our nervous system different options and choices to downshift. We need to find a way to be more in our parasympathetic mode where we can support our biggest and most powerful nerve in the body, the VAGUS NERVE. Our vagal tone determines our digestive health, blood sugar, our heart rate variability, our blood pressure, the health of our immune system, our mental health, etc. As you can see the vagal tone is the key to activating the parasympathetic nervous system.
How can we increase that VAGAL TONE for better health?
First thing in the morning after getting up, wash your face with cold water for a few minutes. In the shower change between hot and cold and stop with cold. Practice diaphragmatic breathing with the emphasize on the exhale. When brushing your teeth start gargling. Practice humming by gently closing your ears with the palms of your hands and thumbs pointed down and on the exhale hum and feel the vibration in your head. Do you like to move, dance….shake your body to your favorite music. Your body also likes gentle pressure…..by gently pressing your body for 5-10 seconds into a wall you stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system.
If you can implement some of those simple and basic practices in your daily life the effects on your overall health and in particular on inflammation are far reaching.
And one more thing ……don’t forget to LAUGH…….