An in-depth report on the causes, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of stress. Lifestyle Changes:
A healthy lifestyle is an essential companion to any stress-reduction program. General health and stress resistance can be enhanced by regular exercise, a diet rich in a variety of whole grains, vegetables, and fruits, and by avoiding excessive alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco. Exercise
Exercise in combination with stress management techniques is extremely important for many reasons: * Exercise is an effective distraction from stressful events. * Exercise may directly blunt the harmful effects of stress on blood pressure and the heart (exercise protects the heart in any case). Usually, a varied exercise regime is more interesting, and thus easier to stick to. Start slowly. Strenuous exercise in people who are not used to it can be very dangerous and any exercise program should be discussed with a physician. In addition, half of all people who begin a vigorous training regime drop out within a year. The key is to find activities that are exciting, challenging, and satisfying. The following are some suggestions: * Sign up for aerobics classes at a gym.
* Brisk walking is an excellent aerobic exercise that is free and available to nearly anyone. Even short brisk walks can relieve bouts of stress. * Swimming is an ideal exercise for many stressed people, including pregnant women, individuals with musculoskeletal problems, and those who suffer exercise-induced asthma. * Yoga or Tai Chi can be very effective, combining many of the benefits of breathing, muscle relaxation, and meditation while toning and stretching the muscles. The benefits of yoga may be considerable. Numerous studies have found it beneficial for many conditions in which stress is an important factor, such as anxiety, headaches, high blood pressure, and asthma. It also elevates mood and improves concentration and the ability to focus. As in other areas of stress...