Stress and Brain Health

Stress and Brain Health

We've all heard of Cortisol in one way or another being described as the "stress hormone" - what exactly is Cortisol, anyway?

Cortisol is the body's response to stress and is created by the Adrenal glands. Cortisol is fine in small amounts, yet damaging in chronic situations. A "fight-or-flight" response is what stimulates Cortisol to pump through our bodies. When we were primitive, this response was turned on by perhaps being chased by a wild animal. Once we escaped the situation, our adrenals would stop pumping Cortisol and we would become at ease once more.

In today's world, more than ever we are experiencing ongoing stressors, such as bills to pay or work to do, meetings to attend, cars to manage and operate, and a "go-go-go" lifestyle.

High stress can be damaging to all organs of the body, especially the brain. The brain uses 20-25% of the body's oxygen, nutrition, and glucose. If the body isn't working right (too stressed out), the brain will not be working right, either. The brain is simply deprived of the food it needs.

When we are stressed, blood vessels constrict and there is a lack of circulation to the brain. When we are relaxed, we think more clearly. Blood vessels dilate, and there is more glucose, oxygen, and nutrition for the blood. The brain is being fed.

Give your brain a chance to relax by simply closing your eyes, pushing all the air out of your lungs, and taking a deep inhale. On your breath out, let everything go. Continue to be with your breath and enjoy the benefits of oxygenating not just your brain, but your entire body.

Ashwagandha is a well-known stress reducer. This Ayurvedic root has been used because of its restorative effects. It nurtures and clarifies the mind and is helpful for anxiety, insomnia, nervous exhaustion, and tension. Ashwagandha helps promote sound, restful sleep. It can also be helpful for increasing physical stamina, energy, and endurance. Ashwagandha is a part of our well-balanced Adrenal Support tea.

Another wonderful stress reducer is an herb we all may have experienced - Lavender! Just a whiff of this lovely aromatic plant is enough to decrease cortisol levels in our bodies. Experience Lavender amidst other herbal stress reducers in our lovely Nerve Tonic tea.

Let us provide our brains - and our bodies - with nourishing herbs that the Earth has given to us as sacred medicine. We are too blessed to be stressed! ~ By Meghane Hernandez

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