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Foods and Mood. How to Eat to Control Your Anger. Get Your Grocery List Here.

Eat to Control Your Anger. Get Your Grocery List Here.

by Yvonne Sinclair M.A.

Remember the old days? No, not that early… I mean the real old days, like the 40’s and 50’s. Well, I am sure some of you were not even a thought in your parent’s expectations at that time. Have you seen presentations, photos, or articles about that era? Have you listened to the music?

Well, let us explore those eras to see why they were the “good ole days." In those times, people actually sat down and ate dinner with their family. People talked to the neighbors and had neighborhood parties.  Some people sat on the porch in rockers and watched the cars cruise by their house. People on the porch waved at the people in the cars, and the people in the car waved back. Food was not as processed as it is now. Clothes were made from real fibers. Now, I am sure you can list the negative, but this is my story, and I like the positive aspects of that era.

Today, we are on the go constantly. Who says hello to someone they meet walking (fast, I am sure) down the sidewalk? Have you ever sat on a porch and rocked? Can you see the zillions of stars from your back yard? How processed is the food you place into your body, and what affect does it have on your well-being? We go, go, go today. We have a great need to progress and succeed... progress to where and succeed in what? How is the stress of this era affecting the people struggling to survive? Has your neighbor dropped over and chatted just to chat, ever?

Most of us feel this everyday stress is at an all-time high. Unfortunately, this fast-paced lifestyle takes its toll on our physical selves. Between parenting with soccer, football, cheer, dance, music, karate, teacher conferences, home work, and keeping your employment satisfied, “life” does not happen. What happened to just being with your partner, much less the children? Where do we find the time to nurture our relationship and connect with our children?

As busy as our life is and as hard as we try to keep it all together, living in a constant state of overdrive can have a serious effect on our health. There are some things we can do to help notice our stress level, pay attention to the ones we love, and care about ourselves. The fast pace itself creates physiological problems within our bodies. Our ability to handle anger is lowered not only by the stress, but also by the effects of the stress and constant on the go.

*Anger is thought to be the leading cause of divorce.

*The Department of Health and Human Services reports, “Domestic fights turn violent when anger is not controlled. This accounts for more visits to the emergency room than auto accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.”

*The American Heart Association in 1996 reported, “People who chronically lose their temper have far higher risk of developing serious cardiac and other disease.”

Stress can be controlled. Even the stress level you experience on a daily basis can be lowered by engaging in certain activities and eating certain foods. Some physical conditions can increase your fatigue and therefore your stress level.

Stress and Fatigue.

In the November 2010 issue of the magazine For Women First, Dr. Oz explores physical conditions to have your doctor consider if you are fatigued. Even though the magazine is for woman, these conditions are not limited to the female gender. 

*Pre-diabetes symptoms: intense cravings for sweets or carbs, belly-centric weight gain, frequent infections, severe PMS perimenopausal or menopausal symptoms, and/or darkened skin on the inner thighs, neck, armpits, knees, or elbows.

*Chronic Fatigue Syndrome symptoms: exhaustion even after mild physical activity, brain fog/forgetfulness, body aches/joint pains, and/or sore throat.

*Anemia symptoms: light-headedness, a racing heart or shortness of breath, frequent headaches, cold hands and feet, and/or muscular weakness.

*Low Thyroid symptoms: brittle fingernails and hair, often feeling cold, weight gain, depression, constipation, and/or memory lapses.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, then you should visit a Primary Care Physician. Feeling fatigued can increase your stress, and an increase stress can lower anger control.

Stress and Foods.

Most of us live with a full schedule each day. Operating in a constant state of overdrive can be detrimental to our health. Shawn Talbott, Ph.D., author of The Cortisol Connection, states “Any kind of stress-from traffic congestion to public speaking-prompts the adrenal glands to produce hormone cortical.”

In the November 2010 issue of the magazine First for Women, this topic is further discussed. “In small bursts, this hormone sparks the release of stored blood sugar, increases heart rate and increases circulation-physiological effects meant to energize you to respond to whatever is triggering anxiety. The problem is modern stressors like bills and deadlines rarely go away. This keeps the adrenals in a continuous state of cortisol production. Complicating matters: Over time unrelenting stress leaves the adrenals exhausted and unable to keep up with the cortisol demands. This depletes the glands’ ability to pump our sufficient levels of hormones like adrenaline, nor epinephrine, and testosterone, which help the body cope with anxiety. And left untreated, adrenal fatigue can lead to more serious conditions, including fibromyalgia, autoimmune disease, and type 2 diabetes.”

In other words, our constant on the go lifestyle and stress will lead to more stress with physical problems and disease.\

The good news is there are some foods that help us break down excess cortisol. Of course the most permanent and healthy solution would be to slow down our schedule and spend time taking care of ourselves, spending time with family and friends, and smelling the roses.  

Here are the foods to help lower the cortisol level: 
*Vitamin C rich foods like citrus fruit, bell peppers, and sweet potatoes.
*Magnesium found in spinach, beans, and, nuts.
*Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish and flaxseed.
*Zinc rich foods like red meats and dark chocolate help as well.

For Women First promises, “All told, these healing foods can restore adrenal health and leave you with increased energy, sunnier moods, sharper focus and a slimmer waistline in as little as two weeks!” 

Wow! I’m going shopping for these foods. Got your grocery list ready?

More on how stress affects your brain.... Click Here.

©Copyright 2011 by Yvonne Sinclair M.A., MFCC. All Rights Reserved. All material is owned and protected. Reproduction without the express written consent of the author is forbidden.

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