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The other day I was walking across the street past a lovely building with the words ‘Music School’ across the front.  Now don’t get me wrong, we all need music in our world, it’s one of life’s great pleasures, but it had me thinking that surely our priorities are grossly outdated!

Given the desperate stages of the current health crisis sweeping through our country, we need to now have ‘a building’ in every school dedicated to teaching our children about their health and nutrition (particularly gut health and mental health.)

THESE are the foundations for our kid’s quality of lives as they grow into our future generations – and in turn the state of the public medical system – NOT so much how to play a violin when they are 15!  Home Economics are still teaching kids how to ‘bake cakes!’ It’s no wonder nearly the entire population is addicted to sugar and suffering!

The lack of knowledge and education about gut and mental health has got into such a desperate stage, evident in the number of people suffering with illness, imbalances, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, heart disease, obesity, autoimmune issues… these are running through us like wild fire, and yet our ‘education system’ still thinks it more important to be teaching our kids music!!!  A frustratingly outdated system for sure.

So in my private clinic there is not one patient I see, who doesn’t have chronic stress issues and it’s this ever present, poorly managed stress,  that is affecting and degrading their health in serious ways.  We are only aware of it on a mild level, largely because we are pushed through ‘the system’ that prioritizes learning to ‘play the violin’ rather than teaching our kids about stuff that will give them a long, healthy and happy life!  Not only that, when ‘they’ have kids, ‘their’ depleted health is going to be passed on to their kids.  Truth is stress alters our genes in some serious ways!

Let’s teach information like this to our kids instead….

You’ve probably heard about the detrimental effects of the stress hormone Cortisol,  BUT did you know that it’s also known as the aging hormone? Let’s face it, who wants to accelerate aging?

Gut and Brain health, go together like salt and pepper (even more so!)  ‘One’ is ever reliant on ‘the other’ PLUS they affect ‘each other’ too, so it’s a continuous two-way cycle of the Gut and Brain governing our health.

If we have too much cortisol running through our veins we are ALWAYS in flight or fight mode. (I should replace ‘if’ with ‘since’ because everyone is suffering from the ‘stress syndrome’ it seems.)

The only ones of us who ARE NOT suffering from chronic stress these days, undoubtedly did in the past and suffered enough ‘pain’ to motivate big changes in their lives and are now completely sold on yoga, meditation and the correct nutrition to keep themselves balanced!

The rest of us are just one big walking ball of stress!  Truth.

For those who are still on the stress treadmill, even when we’re asleep at night, this cortisol can remain unnaturally and dangerously high.   You can tell if this is happening in those of us who always seem to be on the go-go-go, in the habit of walking fast (even when browsing the shops) and generally not being able to stop until we fall into bed early at night in a haze of exhaustion, only to wake up in the morning feeling un-refreshed and the bed looks like a cyclone’s ripped through it due to restless tossing and turning.

These are the signs of a person in constant stress mode and sadly it’s ripping years off our lives.

This chronic stress (chronic meaning long standing stress from cortisol) can affect every physiological system in our body, depleting energy levels, upsetting our thyroid, adrenal glands and causing chaos in our digestion and gut health.  It can make us anxious and irritable, impatient, lead to weight gain (or loss) bone loss and can set the environment for diabetes and heart disease.

Note: we no longer have to be overweight to get late on-set diabetes.  

THIS is what we need to teach our young adults!

So if you want to look younger, feel younger and be healthy – We must get our cortisol levels balanced.  If we don’t, we can look forwards to:

  • Anxiety
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Cancer
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Common Colds
  • Hormone Imbalance
  • Irritable Bowel Disease and Other Digestive Diseases
  • Thyroid Conditions
  • Weight Loss Resistance (Or Weight Gain Resistance)

So What Can WE Do About It?

Many things, but who needs the overwhelm of hearing a list ‘a mile long’ of all the changes we need to make?  Instead for now, let’s just take a look at one area:

The beautiful Adpaptogen Herbs!

What Are Adaptogens?

These are a unique group of healing plants that help restore, balance and protect our body.  As naturopath Mr Wallace explains, an adaptogen doesn’t have a specific action, rather they help us respond better to our stress.  They are like a fluffy pillow which ‘cushions’ some of the blow of stress.  These healing plants recharge our adrenal glands, which are the part of us that will suffer under chronic stress.  Adrenal Fatigue is everywhere, and show’s as signs of ‘reduced’ stress tolerance, always tired, no energy, and waking up feeling ‘still tired!’

3 Adaptogen Herbs That You Can Add To Your Day:

1. Ginseng: The most well known (Asian ginseng or Panax ginseng) is consider the most potent.  Use for mental performance and ability to withstand stress. It is an antioxidant, antidepressant, and lowers blood pressure and blood sugar levels.

2.  Holy Basil: Also known as ‘Tulsi’ and is an ‘elixir of anti-aging.’  You can get this in a tea or it makes up part of a supplement.  It help fight fatigue and stress, balances blood sugar, blood pressure and hormones.

3. Licorice Root: Increases energy, endurance, boosts immune and protects the damage of cortisol.  Be careful with this though if you have high blood pressure as it may affect this.

* Other Adaptogens are: Rhodiola, Astragalus root, Ashwagandah and mushrooms such as reishi shitake, and maitake.

So we can increase our capacity to ‘deal’ with stress.  Because we all know things that a lot of our ‘stressors’ aren’t going away anytime soon, but we CAN ‘cushion’ the way stress can hurt our health and age us.

We just need to know this stuff!

What do you think about Stress and do you think our education system is outdated in terms of educating our kids about this stuff?  Jump over to the Group and let me know your thoughts or if you have any questions – I’d love to hear from you 🙂

 

 

 

 

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