17 Ways To Naturally Decrease Your Stress (+ A Few Freebies To Help)

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Well, let’s face it, we are entering into a stressful week:

election week + a pandemic.

 

My entire goal in running my website and writing these weekly blog posts for you is to decrease your stress and provide tons of uplifting ideas to help you feel better.

So today, on top of sharing my favorite stress relief tips, I also decided to turn my Adrenal Repair Online Class into a digital book you can download right this very minute, for free!  It has tons of fun things inside like a quiz to help you figure out if you are in adrenal fatigue (and what stage you are in) as well as tons of support in helping to fix it.

I’m giving this away free in order to give you immediate support… because we know we are all going to be living with a huge knot in our stomachs this week.  Please share it with anyone you like that could use a little stress relief as well.  It’s waiting for you at the bottom of this article!

Anything that decreases your stress — even something as small as remembering to stay hydrated — can make a measurable change in your wellness and protect your body.  Helping you be resilient, and even boosting your natural immunity (remember that stress decreases your immune system function, so don’t take stress lightly!)

Instead of ignoring your stress levels today, run through this list and jot down a few ideas that resonate with you/ You will boost your health… even during the stress of this week:

 

My 17 favorite ways to naturally decrease stress:

 


 

1.  Take probiotics (and other stress relieving supplements.)

 

I’ve blogged in the past about how probiotics are so powerful in stabilizing the mind that they are actually a treatment for depression.  And now, in a more recent study, researchers show that taking probiotics for only one month reduces stress, decreases anxiety and even improves memory!  Researchers looked at the strain of Bifidobacterium longum and followed what effect this probiotic had when used as a “psychobiotic” — looking at mood, stress, and even cognitive performance.  Research presented Oct 18, 2015 at the Society For Neuroscience annual meeting showed that after only one month, B. Longum statistically and significantly:

  • reduced the cumulative output of the stress hormone cortisol
  • decreased subjective reports of anxiety in response to acute stress
  • improved memory and improved EEG output

 

It’s exciting to focus on treating stress, anxiety, depression and memory disturbances through enhancing the gut biome, because this is a low cost, easily accessible all natural non-prescription, healthy and fabulous intervention that we can all be taking to become resilient to stress.  We can’t change the stress that life brings, but one thing we do have the power to modify is that we can support our gut microbiome better so that we can boost mood and support brain function.

So consider:

  • Adding probiotic containing foods such as fermented foods, kefir, komubcha and organic whole fat yogurt to your diet routinely (one study showed that eating yogurt completely resolved irritable bowel symptoms and gave patients full remission within 6 months)
  • Taking a high quality probiotic supplement that includes strains (such as b. longum and b. bifidum) that have been medically proven to affect brain function and support the gut/mind axis.

Other supplements to consider include:

  • Magnesium: being mineral deficient can trigger anxiety symptoms… magnesium deficiency can cause shakiness, muscle tension and irregular heartbeat.  Your muscles (including your heart!) and your central nervous system absolutely need minerals to stabilize and function.  I highly recommend magnesium replacement if you tend to feel anxious,  stressed or have areas of muscle tension.  Nightly magnesium bath soaks, topical applications of magnesium lotion, or trace mineral drops in water throughout the day can do wonders to settle a hyper-irritable central nervous system and soothe a tension.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids: Omega 3 fatty acids offer a calming effect on the brain.  In fact, a medical study published in Brain, Behavior and Immunity in November 2011 showed that taking Omega 3 fatty acid supplements dropped anxiety rates by 20%!  Eating fish several times a week or taking krill oil daily is an easy way to boost your intake of Omega 3s.

I put my very favorite probiotics, magnesium, omega 3 supplements, and more into a Stress Relief Protocol for you right here;

 

 

That way, you can be sure that you are taking a medical grade product that truly works…  not paying for an empty product with weak or ineffective probiotic strains, or probiotics that have lost efficacy because of the way they were manufactured and stored.

 


 

 

 

2.  Reconnect with nature.

 

When you get stressed out, all you have to do is walk out your front door, step out of your office, or stop driving and step out of your car.  To reconnect with nature is to find an instant sense of spaciousness, a calm centered experience as you take a single deep breath.

Reconnecting with the wonder of being a human being standing on a rock that spirals through space and seeing the earth for the vast support network it iscan’t help but lift your spirits for the better.  The power of nature can hold even your worst of days and remain an immovable source of strength.

Don’t believe me?

The next time you are having a panic attack, or a pounding headache, or a knot of worry grow in your stomach, just go outside.  Get out there.  Don’t force anything, just go outside and let nature work its magic.  If possible, touch the earth directly with your hands or feet and get grounded.

Getting grounded immediately boosts your vagal tone, getting you out of “fight or flight” and calming you.  Reducing blood pressure, deepening breathing and oxygenation, decreasing cortisol output and more.

I’m very heart-warmed to see so many families where I live going on after dinner walks, riding their bikes, jogging in the early hours of the morning, shooting basketballs in driveway hoops, jump roping, etc…

 

But go outside even if you don’t want to exercise.  If you have limited mobility due to medical conditions or just want to relax when you are outside, still do it.

Even taking a hot cup of tea outside at night and looking up at the stars and moon, when the rest of the world is shut up tight at bedtime, is wonderful for clearing the mind and grabbing a few minutes of beautiful fresh air.

Want more ideas on how to connect with the earth and boost your health through grounding?

I wrote a guide for you called The Earth Prescription, and it’s right here.

 

 


 

 

 

 

3.  Get sunlight daily.

 

If you are going outside grounding daily (see tip #2, above) this will be a win-win situation!  But for those that are not drawn to grounding for their health, at least be sure to get some form of sunlight daily.

Sunlight actually prolongs life span, in a dose dependent way (meaning more time in the sun = longer life span.)  I blog about this extensively in this article I wrote for you last year, right here:

 

Time In the Sun Actually Increases Your Life Span… Here’s How To Do It Safely

 

So get sunlight daily for at least 10 minutes, either indoors our outside.  Consider:

    • sitting on a porch, balcony or front door stoop every morning and every evening
    • eating picnic lunches outside mid-day
    • observing which of the windows in your home are sunny and at what time of the day there is a sunbeam and sit in those precious light rays while drinking your morning coffee, your evening tea, while working on your computer, while reading a good book, etc… (the glass will stop the majority of UVB waves needed for making Vit D, so open the window if you can)
    • going for a brisk pre-breakfast walk every morning upon rising
    • going for a post-dinner stroll every evening before dusk
    • enjoy a drive on a sunny day — be sure to roll the windows down and enjoy!
    • moving whatever indoor activities you can move outdoors: yoga, stretches, exercise, meditation, listening to music, weeding through your emails, writing up your grocery list and meal planning, watching TikTok — if you can multitask while doing an activity outside, always choose that!

 

And if getting outside in the daylight is impossible because of your shift work, your medical condition, or simply because you live in an area of the world that is predominantly dark all winter long, a light box can give you all the same benefits.  Light therapy has been clinically proven to boost mood, reduce anxiety, deepen sleep and more.

Published August 2015 in Biological Psychiatry, researchers found that after only 30 minutes of daily light therapy in the mornings, fear and anxiety levels were significantly reduced and stimuli that used to trigger panic did not trigger an anxiety response in the way that it did before the light therapy.

I personally do both — I go outside daily but I also use a lightbox for about 30 minutes every single morning.

Light therapy can be used safely in conjunction with medical treatments (including Rx medications) so if you are on an anxiety or depression medication, augment your treatment with light therapy and it’s highly possible that you will feel so good you can work with your physician to decrease dose over time!  This is the one I use.

 


 

 

 

4. Focus on Spirit.

 

The surest way I know to alleviate stress and suffering is to find meaning in it.  Whether it’s through mediation, personal prayer, asking friends and family to pray for you, cultivating your own sense of spirit surrounding and supporting you, attending support groups, going to religious or spiritual meetings — these are all such important ways to alleviate stress.

The divine support system is around you, surrounding you, whether you are able to feel it or not.  Calling on the power of prayer or connecting with that reservoir of love through meditation is an instant boost that strengthens you and changes outcome, no doubt about it.

Need some more inspiration?  Read Man’s Search For Meaning, by Viktor E. Frankl.  He is a concentration camp survivor who writes beautifully about how the people who survived these horrific conditions were not the strongest, or youngest, or even the healthiest… they were the ones who found meaning in what they were going through.

Finding a deeper, spiritual meaning in what you are going through — focusing on the why behind the stress season instead of on the stress itself — is in and of itself enough to sustain you.

Consider developing a meditation practice or a prayer practice to get into a daily habit of reframing your outlook around the things that are stressing you out today… and as protection against the things that will stress you out tomorrow. Literally even just repeating one word over and over for a few minutes (known as mantra therapy) has been shown to be so powerful it treats PTSD as good as psychotherapy!  I review that medical study for you right here:

 

2 New Treatments For PTSD You Can Use Right Now To Feel Immediatley Better.

 

This is something shown over and over again in the medical literature — the power of prayer to  improve clinical outcome (like reducing pain, enhancing recovery after cardiac surgery, even helping substance abuse recovery) and the power of spirituality to support general wellness (like boosting physical well being, increasing functional well being, and decreasing physical symptoms in cancer patients) is well documented.

The divine support system is around you, whether you are able to feel it or not.  I feel that understanding upsetting stressors and traumas from a deeper spirit based perspective is so healing that I’ve painted many paintings over the years to help reminds us:

 

 

You can find all of those paintings I painted (and many more!) right here.  I’d love you to check them out!

Whether it’s through meditation, mantra repetition, mindful walking (I created a video for you right here that walks you through how to create your own labyrinth for mindful walking… it’s easier than you think!) personal prayer, asking friends and family to pray for you, joining online spiritual groups (especially right now with many spiritual centers being closed for social distancing reasons, online groups are a fantastic option,) downloading spirituality apps that will send reminders to your phone, or reading books that align with and strengthen your sense of spiritual presence… cultivating a deeper sense of spirit surrounding and supporting you is such an important way to alleviate stress.

 


 

 

 

5. Music.

 

My kids will tell you that if I am really grumpy, all we have to do is hop in the car and turn on the radio and within a few songs, all of a sudden I don’t feel so hopeless.  In fact, I feel optimistic and grateful and filled with the same sense of wonder and possibility that I feel when I spend time in nature.

My son funnels all his energy into his piano and guitar whenever he feels stressed out… and the music pouring through our home is as healing a presence as any I could possibly create even with my 26+ years of medical experience as a physician.  Music is just. That. Good.

The power of music to wash through you and lift you is amazing.  In fact, as I blog about here, music has the ability to lift dementia — it is that uplifting!

 

Creating A Healing Connection Through Music

 

If you are feeling stressed or depressed, especially if you can not leave your current surroundings (perhaps you are in the hospital or your office or your car…) slip on some music and allow it to sweep through your soul and lift you higher.  Consider creating a playlist right now, filled with songs that move or inspire you, to reach for the next time stress threatens to suffocate you.

 


 

 

 

6. Consider changing jobs.

 

No, I’m not joking.  Stress on the job is such a real threat to your health that I think you should take it into account when figuring out your future.  Hop over here where I talk more about a medical study that shows that stress on the job can literally drive you crazy, and 4 ways to counterbalance it:

 

Is Your Job Driving You Crazy? You Are Not Alone. Here’s Help.

 

And if you can’t change jobs, take the time to invest in developing a good support system at your work.  If you are suffering and over-taxed, ask for help.  Ask your coworkers, your boss, the person you say hi to in the office every day.  You can modify your current work situation even if you can’t change or leave it.  Alleviating work related stress can go a long way to decreasing your over all life stressors… and protect your health.

 


 

 

 

7. Decrease background noise.

 

As I talk about in my blog post here, noise pollution is not just a bunch of loud noises causing long term hearing issues.  We are now aware that even normal volumes of speaking and car sounds result in much more insidious health risks over time — compromising the health of your heart, of your brain, of your body:
Recent medical studies have found that:
  • Normal conversation (at 60 dBA) can, over time, contribute negatively to health issues… increasing both heart attack and stroke risk by 6% and 14% respectively.
  • The normal sound of cars driving/traffic, doubles that — increasing heart attack and stroke risk by 12% and 28% respectively.
  • Listening to a telephone ring repeatedly increases risk of heart attack and stroke by 18% and 42% respectively, and on and on.
The new term is Noise Annoyance — which is all that is needed to produce these increased rates of chronic, life threatening health issue.

Think about your day:

  • Do you hear traffic constantly (especially consider if you hear traffic where you sleep at night?)
  • Do you work in an area where there is chronic talking (such as a hospital, a hotel, a store or a restaurant?)
  • Do you work in an area where there are phones constantly ringing (such as at an office?)
  • Do you work in an area that has music playing constantly?
  • Do you sleep with music or a television on?
If so, your risk for diabetes, metabolic syndrome, heart attack, stroke, cognitive impairment and more is much greater than it has to be. Read the article (I linked you to above) for 10 ways to decrease your background noise — there is even a free printable list you can print out — which can truly decrease your stress levels over all.


8.  Hydrate.

 

It’s really important to recognize signs of dehydration as we head into the cooler months, because believe it or not: it’s very very easy to get dehydrated in winter.  With heating systems turned on, the air we are breathing is incredibly dry.  The drier the air, the more water we lose from our bodies, in several ways.

Did you know that urinating and sweating are not the only ways we lose water each day? We actually lose water through every breath, called respiratory water loss, and we also lose water through our skin, called transcutaneous water loss, which happens even when we aren’t sweating.

Both of those losses are occurring every minute of every day — a minimum water loss of over 3 cups of water just from breathing and skin evaporation — and increase dramatically when the air is dry… drying out our lungs and our skin rapidly.

And did you know even very mild levels of dehydration might be affecting you on a daily basis? Constipation, dry skin, bad breath, headache, and high blood pressure… and yes, irritability and stress.  Hop over to this blog post to assess whether you are dehydrated and find tons of wonderful holistic ideas on staying more hydrated all winter long:

 

A Dozen Unique Ways To Use Water To Improve Your Health, Right Now

 


 

 

9.  Breathe.

 

Use the centering power of your breath to provide calming bio-feedback immediately to your body.

Did you know it only takes 3 deep breaths to measurably decrease stress?  That’s because deep breathing decreases your heart rate, decreases your blood pressure, stimulates digestion, lifts mood, and helps you relax more easily into sleep.

Similarly to grounding, deep breathing stimulates the vagus nerve that runs through your chest and abdomen and helps to regulate many different organs, including the heart, lungs, and the gastrointestinal tract.  By stimulating the vagus nerve you support the parasympathetic nervous system into calming you down.

Try deep belly breathing (not shallow chest breathing) and slow your breathing to half the normal rate (from about 12 breaths per minute down to about 6). Thwarting stress can be as simple as breathing in while counting to 5, holding your breath for 3 counts, then releasing slowly while counting to 7.  Repeat!

Breathe your way through it and usher in the feeling of peace and calm with each breath. Need some guidance on taking 3 deep breaths?  In this blog post, I give you my favorite techniques for focusing on the breath, and I even created a video for you so we can take those deep breaths together.  Deep breathing is truly one of my favorite ways to decrease stress and I passionately believe we all need to learn these techniques to navigate life more easily:

 

4 Easy Ways To Use Your Breath To Feel Instantly Better — Do Them With Me Right Now

 


 

 

10.  Write it down.

 

There are so many huge, daily changes in the world that require overwhelming, important decisions to be made,  day in and day out.  So I created a worksheet that can help make at least one of the tough choices you are facing today a little more approachable.

Simply print it out and fill it out.  Clarity, ease, a sense of relief, a meaningful choice that actually excites — instead terrifies — you into moving forward…  that is my goal in creating this free worksheet for you:

 

 

If you love it, feel free to save this worksheet as a file on your computer to use whenever you like, forever more.   Print out as many copies as you want, whenever you want.  If you don’t want to print it out, it’s a very easy acronym that you can easily remember and think of any time, any where, and it can help you make basically any decision on earth:

The acronym is BRAIN:

B = Benefits (what are the benefits?)

R = Risks (what are the risks?)

A = Alternatives (what are the alternatives?)

I = Intuition (what does your intuition say?)

N = Nothing (what if you do nothing?)

 

Give this quick video a watch as you fill the worksheet out.  Just hearing me run through it one time for you will allow you to always have it in your mental toolkit to use whenever you need it.

I guarantee if you run through this exercise just one time with me today, you will remember it forever.  In the future, you’ll be able to mentally run through the acronym in just seconds, without ever writing a single thing down.

And of course, as with the free Adrenal Fatigue book below, share this worksheet with any loved ones who are making difficult decisions too — we could all use a little more support these days.

 


 

11. Gratitude and compassion.

 

This is a no-brainer — one of the gifts of suffering through stressful times is that you can witness and hold other people’s suffering so much more fully.  Knowing the darker side, leaning into it, persevering through it, witnessing with compassion what others have gone through… all of these things make traveling your own dark night feel less lonely.

It’s not just that suffering has meaning but it goes one step further to say that you are strong enough to bear it and your heart is big enough to hold it.

Focus on alleviating the suffering in others around you actually helps you bear your own burdens too.

Holding compassion for the entire yin and yang of it all, the darkness and light of the world…  the gift here is being able to open your heart even wider than you thought possible before… and then wider than even that.

Keep your eye open for flyers and ads in local businesses and libraries, church bulletins and neighborhood drives, for ways that you can give of your time and energy in a way that uplifts you instead of adds to your to-do list.  Plenty of others have already done the hard work for you of arranging ways to donate your time and energy — sign up for something as little or big as you like!

There are tons of community outreach programs, from donating time or resources to a charity or foundation that you believe in is probably the easiest way to express gratitude and compassion during your own challenging times.

One of the simplest ways to increase gratitude is also one of my favorite, and as a bonus it helps me fall asleep, the topic that’s coming up next!  All you do is, as you close your eyes to fall asleep for the night, run through the day in your mind’s eye.  Specifically look for moments you had — even if it’s just one — that you were glad happened.  And when you find that moment in the day, pause mentally and just say to yourself :

“I’m grateful for that.”

That’s it.

Even on a really horrible, tough, gut wrenching, miserable day, there are singular moments that happened in your favor or helped strengthen you to get you through.  Something as simple as eye contact with someone who smiled at you.  Or chancing into a food that was previously out of stock in the store.  Or hearing a bird outside your window singing to remind you that all is well in the world.  Or finally carving out time to take a warm bath.

I go chronologically through my day and pause here and there to say “I am grateful for that.”

I generally find I have fallen asleep before I’ve gotten to the end of my day and caught up with my own self, laying in bed that night in my “daily rewind.”

Please try it and see if you enjoy this nightly gratitude practice too.

 


12. Sleep.

 

Studies have shown that sleep deprivation is even harder to bear during times of anxiety or stress.  So if you are going through a time of stress, it is more important than ever before in your entire life that you sleep well.  Your brain must get restorative sleep in order to recover from the stress of the day and prepare for the next day ahead.  In fact, sleep is so powerful that it is totally possible to treat anxiety and stress solely through increasing the quality of your sleep.

The timing is perfect for focusing on fixing your sleep, because you can use the fact that the days are getting shorter and night is getting longer to enter a time of restorative hibernation.  Your natural desire for earlier sleep onset in the winter can help you shift your routine from staying up late at night to grabbing an earlier bedtime.   Literally shifting your bedtime forward by just one hour — just one hour! — is enough to make a measurable improvement in how your body functions the very next day.

If you need some tips on how to get better sleep, here is an article I’ve written for you on correcting your sleep deficit:

 

Just In Time For Back-To-School: Get Rid of Your Sleep Deficit

For more articles I’ve written on sleep health, click over to read:

 


13. Walk.

 

Engage in regular aerobic exercise, especially if you can exercise outdoors in the early morning hours.  But if a the thought of exercising turns you off… just walk instead.  Simply walking for 10 minutes each day can make a huge difference in your mood, and stress levels, all winter long.

If you can’t walk or get any other form of exercise?  Sauna is your answer.  Medical studies show that sauna is just as good as exercise in boosting longevity.  I blog about that for you right here. Sauna in the wintertime?  Oh hells yes:

 

Sauna + Grounding = A Win-Win Combo To Boost Your Health All Winter Long

 

It doesn’t take years and years to see benefit from daily movement (statistically significant health benefits began to accrue right after you start!) and it doesn’t take hours and hours of exercising — statistically significant benefits are measurable with only about 17 minutes of exercise a day.

17 minutes, people!

 

And it doesn’t have to be strenuous activity.

A study published May 2019 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that replacing just 30 minutes of sitting time a day with even light physical activity decreased mortality rates significantly.   As light as a gentle stroll?  Yes.  So let’s commit to taking a 17 minute walk daily during times of stress and we will be boosting our health exponentially… not only becoming more resilient to stress but actually protecting our lifespan.  That’s win-win.

 


 

 

 

14. Body work.

 

The feeling of worry and stress and anxiety is often the stress of energy that is accumulating in the body without release.  I know I personally feel this as a ball of pressure right in my solar plexus, as well as knots along my neck… but it’s different for everyone.

Irritability, crying, headaches, diarrhea, nausea, tension, muscle stiffness, decreased or increased appetite, weight loss or gain, insomnia… often these all represent energy that just needs to be released to make room for the natural healing process and health/hope to return.

If you are feeling stuck and in need of physical release, do any or all of the following to help assist your body in letting go of stress… these are all ways to do body work right in the comfort of your own home:

  • deep stretches
  • yoga
  • guided meditation
  • long walks
  • massage — foot, neck and hand massages are all massages you can do on your own body to release tension
  • heat (hot water bottles are the best!) over tense areas
  • water (in the form of showers or baths, as well as increasing hydration by drinking lots of water!)
  • orgasm

And, if you feel comfortable heading out to a local practitioner, you can include:

  • acupuncture
  • qigong
  • tai chi
  • reiki
  • deep tissue massage
  • physical therapy

All of these methods of body work will reduce tension, release endorphins, and help lighted your load of stress.

 


 

 

15.  Refresh your space.

 

A symbolic fresh start during times of stress can help you move on and usher in new, positive and hopeful energy.  So if you are feeling stressed out and stuck, it might help if you give your living space a re-fresh.

The illusion that things never change can mentally hold you in a place of worry.  Release this by making small changes to your living space, clean your living space, changing the energy of the room you are in, physically leaving the space you are in for a breath or two, or using candles/incense/bells/chimes/lighting/a new plant… whatever it takes to feel the energy shift in your space and remind you that nothing…

…NOTHING…

…stays the same forever.  This holiday season will soon be over, before you know it.  It’s a matter of a few weeks and then next thing you know, we are headed into spring.  In the meantime, consider:

  • freshen up the plants in each room, repot and water them, add new plants if you don’t have any
  • rearranging whatever furniture you can
  • clean your living space, room by room, and declutter along the way
  • adding a mirror or two to help reflect light around the space
  • burning candles of light in the evenings to help create a new warm glow in old, dark and depressing spaces
  • go outside to take a deep breath of air
  • lighting a smudge stick or burn incense or run a aromatherapy diffuser in your home
  • ring a bell or strike a chime while setting a new intention for the space you are in
  • move your body to increase circulation and flexibility — find a yoga or stretch video (countless free ones are waiting for you on YouTube right now) to get your body unstuck.

No matter what you do, do something to break the illusion that you are stuck.  You are not stuck.  You are a new person every single day and every moment within that day.  There is always an ebb and a flow of energy through every situation no matter how unchanging it appears on the surface.  Remind yourself of this by refreshing your space and feel your levels of stress lighten a bit.

 


 

 

 

16. Ask for help.

 

I know, I know, nobody wants to do this and especially at a time when everyone is facing huge challenges, it can be tough to ask someone to help you out.  But bonding together, even — and perhaps especially — during the bad times is a game changer.

Of course the typical advice to ask family and friends for simple, actionable things that will help you stands (for example, ask your neighbor to pick up some cereal for you at the store, ask your sister to meet up with to sit outside, drinking some tea or coffee together, and share what your worries and concerns are, asking your old friend to text you every morning when you wake up so you don’t feel so alone, etc…) but people are also willing to help you out even if they don’t know you yet.

Do a search to find contact information and call your local support groups, local food banks, local ministries, local disaster relief and emergency financial assistance (to help pay bills,) join online support groups or enroll in private online counseling, all from the comfort of your own home.

I know I didn’t fully realize how many people I had, providing back up support in my life, until I went through a personal crisis. Some of my most meaningful sources of support during a very overwhelming time in my life were from people I had never ever met before, like the manager at my local bank and the complete stranger who came to pick up the furniture I got rid of as I downsized everything.

If you are having a stressful crisis, ask for help.  Ask your neighbor, ask your family, ask your friends.  And even if you have none of the above, go out into the world asking for help to show up — find online support, go to your bank and ask to speak to the manager, go to the grocery store and ask to speak to the manager, contact your local utility companies and ask for help, go to the thrift shop or the park and simply make friends.  Yes, you can wear your face mask and stand far apart and still make new friends or simply ask for help.

Angels are out there waiting to embrace and help you every single day.

 


 

 

 

17.  Repair your adrenals.

 

We all know someone’s who’s hair has literally seemed to turn grey overnight from stress… it’s a very real thing.  And it actually happened to me!  Years ago, my kids and I were unexpectedly abandoned by my then-husband who disappeared one night (and the stressful subsequent divorce that ensued) and that year I got my fair share of grays that seemed to pop up daily — and have remained in place right now, even almost a decade later.

We also know during times of chronic stress, hair can become markedly thinner, falling out strand by strand or in clumps, even clogging your shower drain night after night.  This is because your body has hormone imbalance during prolonged stress… a very real result of elevated cortisol, hypothyroid, intestinal malabsorption, leaky gut, and other situations that stem from body’s response in trying to protect you from all the stress in your system.

And now we have an explanation for why our hair mirrors the amount of stress we are going through.  Hair, it turns out, keeps a very accurate “stress diary” for us, and analyzing hair strands is actually a wonderful, measurable, non-subjective way to quantify cortisol release in the body.

A study, published in Neuropsychoendocrinology in March 2018, showed that;

  • hair samples are a fantastic way to follow cortisol levels and help explain why our hair mirrors the stress that is going on internally in the body, since it collects cortisol in a *hair diary* for us
  • therapeutic interventions during and after times of stress and trauma actually help heal the physical body, normalizing cortisol, which is then shown in the hair strands
  • and even short term therapy helps significantly!

So what that tells me, is that addressing and treating stress is important, dramatically and measurably corrects your cortisol levels, and is worth examining.  So my final tip for you today is to assess your adrenal health.  To do just that, I decided to turn my 5 day online Adrenal Repair class into a free book that anyone can download and read.

If you have been through any kind of stressful situation or big life transition or change (even fun, positive ones like marriage, a new job, a new baby!) chances are your adrenals could use some TLC.

If you start to take care of your adrenal rhythm now, in just a few short months from now you can be fully recovered from Adrenal Fatigue and emerge this spring feeling better than you have felt in many many years!

Did you know that you can actually be in adrenal fatigue from birth?  It’s true.

But did you also know it’s fully reversible, no matter how long you’ve been living on fumes?

That’s also true, and I will help you get there.  Click the button below to order your free copy of my Adrenal Fatigue eBook… it will be instantly emailed directly to you, to keep forever:

 

 

 


 

I really hope this list of 17 things you can do to release stress and support your health… even in the middle of great personal stress or anxiety… is helpful to you and gives you at least one or two new ideas to consider.

To a decreasing your stress this fall and winter, my friends! (and of course please vote if have not already voted!)

xoxo, Laura

 

Holiday Eating & Drinking Tips To Protect Your Health (+ Avoid Weight Gain)

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Holiday stress isn’t just stress over picking out the perfect gift, or traveling in the midst of a pandemic, or balancing social commitments.

Most people report that being surrounded by rich holiday foods, alcohol, impulse eating, and weight gain during the holiday season adds a significant amount of stress as well.

So well before the holiday season gets underway — a season that generally starts with Halloween candy binges and doesn’t end until after we ring in 2021 — I wanted to give you a few tips on how to navigate this tricky but wonderful time of comfort food, decadent desserts, and celebratory toasts.

 

If there was ever a time that people worry about their weight, it’s during the holidays.

 

So if you want to stick with foods that are healthy for your body… or, at the very least, you don’t want to undo all of the benefit you’ve gotten from the grounding, the fresh air, the decent sleep and good supplements you take, here are the party foods to look for.

You are almost guaranteed to find at least one of these four treats at any holiday party.

 

My 5 Favorite Party Foods:

 


 

1)  Chocolate!

 

Shown to support heart and brain health, women who consume chocolate on a regular basis actually have a lower body mass index then those who don’t!

 


 

 

2)  Caffeinated coffee or tea

 

Warding off dementia, Alzheimers and depression, even decreasing your risk for developing diabetes… a warm cup of coffee or tea is the perfect way to indulge at a party, guilt free, especially if you can skip the sugar and whipped cream.

 


 

 

3)  Berries

 

Super-powered antioxidants that decrease inflammation throughout your body, enjoy the fresh fruit party platter!  Best dessert yet?

Snag that chocolate covered strawberry and enjoy every single luscious bite… combining #1 with #3 on this list!

 


 

4)  Nuts

 

Medically proven to lower heart disease risk and boosting energy without causing any weight gain, find the nut bowl and dig in!

 


 

 

5)  Deviled Eggs

 

I saved the best for last. My favorite party food of all time is deviled eggs.  I truly believe in eating eggs regularly… the protein and healthy fats are second-to-none.

Although traditional recipes for deviled eggs double their calorie content, it’s still so much less calorie dense (at about 160 calories per deviled egg) than almost anything else that you can find at a holiday dinner.  And the protein is sure to keep you much more full and decrease your desire to fill your stomach with empty carbs and inflammation-inducing sugar.

If you are truly concerned about keeping calorie counts low, you can always offer to be the one to bring deviled eggs to the party!

Using this recipe for a skinny deviled egg (which uses only some of the yolks and substitutes in greek yogurt instead of mayo) each deviled egg is only 37 calories and has 3.8 grams of satisfying, delicious protein!

 


 

 

 

But what if is the holiday drinks that are stressing you out?

 

It is possible to buffer your liver — at least a little — during your next holiday toast.

Drinking wine occasionally has enjoyed mixed health reviews — with some studies reporting cognitive benefits from wine (although for those you can simply take resveratrol supplements, which I highly recommend) but many more concerning studies reporting that alcohol increases cancer risk and decreases life span, well outweighing the benefits in my opinion.

And because holiday parties typically mean a lot of driving out and about to attend these parties, my first recommendation is just not to drink at all!

 

 

 

But if you are going to toast the holidays with a drink or two… and you have a safe ride with a designated driver lined up… there are supplements that may help that drink be less toxic to your dear old liver.

Plus, we can’t ignore that even if the recommendation is not to drink at all, there are 140 millions folks (in America alone!) that regularly drink and about 16 million of them have an alcohol abuse disorder.

So instead of ignoring a huge population of folks that need health support, I share this information in an effort to help their body stay as healthy as possible while they seek the help and support they need to stop drinking.

Not providing support for folks who drink is like not providing birth control for those who are sexually active.  It’s irresponsible to insist the only option available is total abstinence.

So let’s start with the basics:

Alcohol is metabolized into acetaldehyde by your liver.

If acetaldehyde sounds familiar, you might be be thinking of it’s cousin, the more well known autopsy chemical:

formaldehyde.

 

Yep, they are related, and just like formaldehyde is well known to pickle human tissue, acetaldehyde isn’t very gentle on your liver or body either.

Both are harsh chemicals known to cause cancer.

If you are drinking one drink an hour or more, you can expect to feel cumulative effects of acetaldehyde build up as your body can’t metabolize the acetaldehyde quickly enough: heart racing, pounding, nausea, dehydration, dizziness.

You might call that feeling buzzed or tipsy, but what that really is is the beginning of acetaldehyde poisoning.

 

How can we protect ourselves from this dangerous metabolite?

 

Our body can use n-acetyl-l-cysteine (NAC) + thiamine (B1) to protect against the acetaldehyde effects until our liver can further break the acetaldehyde down into carbon dioxide and water.

You can also add on Vitamin C to help keep the l-cysteine activated and working more efficiently as well.

A combination of l-cycsteine, thiamine and vit C (NAC + B1 + Vit C) taken before you start drinking, may help block the toxic effects of the acetaldehyde can help your body recover more easily from those holiday gatherings.

There was a very encouraging animal study that showed l-cysteine and thiamine was protective and prolonged the life of rodents who were fed toxic doses of acetaldehyde.

Only 10% of animals initially survived a large dose acetaldehyde challenge without supplementation, but 100% initially survived with L-cysteine + thiamine on board!  A 100% survival rate in the face of toxic aldehyde poisoning is quite incredible.

Of course, no pharmaceutical company out there has poured money into researching how to reduce harm in humans from alcohol… so there are no large human medical studies to back this up.  Because these supplements are safe, cheap, and readily available, pharmaceutical companies know they are unlikely to make a huge profit from pour large amounts of funding into examining how these vitamins might help us preserve and protect our health.

But on the upside, exactly because they are safe and inexpensive and readily available, this means you have easy access to these supportive healing supplements too.  Woot!  But be sure to stick with very high quality supplements made in fantastic, reputable pharmacy grade nutraceutical facilities.

To help, I have a Party Detox Protocol waiting for you right here in my trusty online dispensary (along with other protocols like Gut Healing Protocol and Immune Boosting Protocol) so that you can be sure you have pharmacy grade, super pure quality supplements on hand to support your body if you do decide to drink this holiday season.

 

 

All in all, taking L-cysteine (NAC), thiamine (B1) and Vitamin C before drinking might help spare your body from some portion of the the ill effects of the toxic acetaldehyde.

These supplements are not a recommendation to make drinking safe… rather to make drinking less toxic.

Remember, no supplement can make drinking safe. And no supplement can make drinking and driving the slightest bit safe… or morally correct… or legal.

If you are going to drink… don’t drive.  Ever.

 


 

 

What else can you do to help support healthy eating at holiday events?

Recognize your emotional eating style.

 

 

What I’ve noticed as a physician examining health outcomes for the past 20 years, is that most people eat emotionally instead of nutritionally.

To help you focus on what matters most (which is consuming nutrient dense foods) I have developed a list of the top 7 emotional eating patterns I see over and over again.

If you can develop insight into why you eat the way you do, you can reframe your mind away from eating emotionally and instead eat intellectually, based on what supports your health best.

Stop worrying so much about what treats and indulgences you crave and instead figure out why you crave them.

Look over this list to see if you can identify which emotional eating pattern describes you best and get some tips on working with your eating patterns in a healthier way:

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS SECURITY:

For some folks, food represents safety and security.  

So when they are not eating, deep fears of safety and panic may arise.

There may be worries about food scarcity and needing to know when and what your next meal will be.

If you notice you overeat, it may be an attempt to feel secure and reassured that all is well. You may crave comfort foods such as casseroles and home cooking and baked goods, or foods that remind you of childhood.

The solution: focus on portion sizes &/or reach for high fiber foods.

If you tend to eat in this way, it is perfectly reasonable to feed your body foods that comfort it, but the goal is to have reasonable portion sizes. 

Another way to provide comfort and a deep contentment to security-type eaters is to include lots and lots and lots of fiber, so that you feel full, satiated, safe and grounded for longer.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS PLEASURE:  

For some folks, food isn’t just about the nutrition, food is about the entire experience… the smell, the feel, the texture, the flavor, the delight in chewing it.

Food is pleasurable and even sensual. 

If this is your style of eating, you may find you are eating because you want the feel of food in your mouth, not because you are hungry.

You may also find a love/hate relationship with food… often pleasure-seeking eaters have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) or lactose intolerance or celiac disease and need to find a balance between the foods they love and the foods their body hates. 

The solution: focus on pleasurable drinks you enjoy &/or consider chewing gum.

One great idea for pleasure eaters is to enjoy drinking (coffees, teas, water, fresh squeezed juices…) or chewing gum throughout the day to experience that sensual pleasure of having sensations in the mouth without necessarily reaching for food.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS POWER:

For some folks, eating food is an issue of control or power.

These control-based eaters are the ones most likely to try to strictly monitor what they eat and submit to horrible restrictive diets that they absolutely hate!  

Healthy eating is not about what you restrict but rather what you eat.

So for people who see food as power, diets are particularly offensive because restricting food intake feels like a loss of power or a loss of control… two things these types of eaters hate! 

The solution: pick easily digestible foods &/or develop a grazing habit (eating smaller quantities more often.)

One great idea for control-based eaters is to drop the diets and instead focus on choosing easily digestible foods like soups and pureed foods that are easier on your digestive organs (liver, pancreas, stomach) and eating frequent, smaller meals, grazing all throughout the day instead of a few large meals.

Focusing on high quality foods and eating them more often, instead of restricting quantity, tends to be kinder than dieting and allows your body to feel healthier.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS LOVE:

Some folks enjoy food that releases endorphins and provides a rush, similar to falling in love.

Any of my blog readers who know how often I blog about eating chocolate will recognize… yep, I’m this type of eater. 

Romantic foods like oysters, red wine, chocolate… it’s not so much that these eaters care about food, they care about the way the food makes them feel.

Dieting feels atrocious for love-seeking eaters and restricting food is equivalent to being dumped by a lover. 

The solution: eat with others &/or make your place setting beautiful.

One great idea for love-seeking eaters is to focus on enjoying the people you are eating with more than the food — if possible, avoid eating alone (which typically leads to over-eating) and instead really focus on making eye contact with the people you are enjoying a meal with, the conversation.

This will allow you to enjoy what foods you do eat — for example, appreciating a lovely glass of wine and a small piece of dark chocolate instead of three plates full of food you do not actually love or even enjoy.

Or, focus just as much on creating a lovely place to eat as you do what foods you are eating.  Add a fresh flower to your kitchen table, bring your lunch outside to eat in sunshine the middle of a work day, or browse thrift stores for beautiful, vintage glasses and plates to mix and match, or hand sew some beautiful cloth napkins to use as a treat.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS JOY:

Some people just love to enjoy a wide variety of foods and this is one of their wonderful strengths with eating. 

My son is a joy-based eater and he is amazing at trying foods most children wouldn’t even think of… exotic foods, spicy foods, unusual vegetables that kids traditionally hate.

He is open to trying it all and gets so excited as he watches me prepare an interesting meal from scratch. 

Because joyful eaters are so open to food, dieting or any type of food restriction at all feels like a huge loss and may even bring deep sorrow. 

The solution: increase food variety &/or make meals from scratch.

My favorite recommendation for joy-based eaters is to focus on trying new and unusual foods to satisfy their cravings, instead of over-eating a large quantity of boring foods. 

Keep a stash of different spices, hot sauces and healthy seasonings to make each bite taste exciting and invigorating instead of needing larger portions to bring joy. 

Joy eaters also tend to actually enjoy preparing food, so if you are a joy eater build time into your day to focus on trying new recipes, browsing new cookbooks, and preparing healthy meals from scratch.

Joy-based eaters can feel guilty that food brings them joy — but I say this is a strength!  Food brings joy!  So choose your food selection based on how much joy it brings you and do not waste your time (or calories) on food that does not bring joy.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS ENERGY:

People that eat for energy may need lots more fats and more protein than other eaters.

These people have so much energy output that each bite needs to be calorie dense and their body knows this.

Although they get the message to feel bad about eating fats and eating dense protein (after all, eating a light salad seems so much more social acceptable) this leaves them feeling depleted and desperate for a pick-me-up later.

They may even feel a sense of shame about eating something that their vegetarian friend (who is not an energy-eater) would not touch.

The solution: focus on protein and fat rich foods.

Instead of feeling guilty, energy eaters need to know that they are honoring their bodies by feeding their brain lots of healthy fats (organic whole fat dairy/butter/yogurt or coconut, avocado, fish oil…) and protein (organic, ethically produced meats, organic eggs,  organic nuts and nut butters.).

My daughter is an energy eater, and I can honestly say that she is one of the healthiest people I know.  Glowing skin.  Gorgeous hair.  Beautiful radiant soul. 

People who are energy eaters need to feel good about their intuitive food choices that make them crave protein.

Not everyone can feel their best on a strictly vegetarian diet, so please be non-judgmental towards yourself or your friends who need to eat ethically sourced meat routinely.

 


 

 

  • FOOD IS OPTIONAL:

Does this sounds familiar: forgetting to eat, not making the time to eat, feeling dizzy because you skipped lunch, reaching for a quick snack and then getting right back to work, forgetting to hydrate? 

Some folks find it easy to ignore their bodies needs or lose track of time. 

While sporadic eaters are usually not so bothered by going on a diet, the danger here is that they often don’t take the time to eat healthily so that when they do eat, they are ravenous and don’t make smart food choices, or they don’t even get the needed nutritional building blocks at all. 

The solution: schedule meals & drink water often.

The best thing these eaters can do is to schedule in their eating so that they eat at regular intervals, stay hydrated, and make great food choices… instead of not eating all day long and then binging in a drive through on the way home.

Another great tip is to carry water with you at all times, so that even if they you not taking the time to properly eat, you stay well hydrated. 

This goes for everyone, but to sporadic eaters most of all.

 


 

 

 

I hope these insights helps give you an idea of how to work with your own unique energy flow, cravings and health goals.  Hopefully this article gave you some great tips on which party foods to gravitate to, how to detox after a holiday toast, and how to recognize the motivation behind your eating style.

And last but not least — if you want more support to safely, easily, and effectively lose weight in a way that supports your innate health, I’ve got you.  We can work together to directly support your weight loss goals in my upcoming online health class.

Join into my:

 

Weight Release & Reset Online Class

 

 

“I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the Weight Reset emails and videos! I looked forward to each and every day.  Your class gave me so much hope!”  – C.C.

“This was AWESOME!!  I loved all the information — the medical studies to back it up and the daily reminders.  Plus – I love that you can do this at your own pace.  Thank you!”  – C.W.

“I got a lot out of the class.  I was surprised at how many different things can affect your weight and when you talked about them in the class… it was like a bell went off.  I would definitely recommend the class to others.”  – S.G.

 

Together, we will go over the 5 pillars of sustainable, feel-good weight loss.  One pillar a day for 5 days.  Simple and sweet.

I’ve based this course directly off of the medical literature and my 20 years of experience helping to support my patients with their weight loss goals.

You’d be surprised that your body naturally knows what weight is the perfect one for you, and it can sustain it at this perfect weight effortlessly once you naturally align your metabolism.  I’ll show you how in a very non-threatening, supportive, uplifting way.

It’s not about being rigid or militant or hard on yourself, in fact, it’s the exact opposite.  The harder you are on yourself, the harder it is to align with your healthiest version of you.

It’s not even about your diet and exercise plan — there are actually several other things that are even more important than what you eat and how you move… and without knowing what those things are, you just can’t lose weight.

Understand the things that sabotage weight loss and the weight releases, naturally.

Class runs November 16th – 20th, 2020.

This is the last time I am running this class in 2020.  Hop over here to sign up and reserve your spot today:

 

 

To your resilient, natural health!

xoxox, Laura

4 Easy Ways To Use Your Breath To Feel Instantly Better — Do Them With Me Right Now

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In medicine, we know it only takes three deep breaths to significantly support vagal nerve tone, which helps modulate your autonomic nervous system.  Meaning your heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure and brain all get calmed and centered and soothed… and pain significantly decreases as well.

Because we can actively control our body’s air exchange through intentional breathing, there are lots of awesome ways you can play around with using your breath to calm you, invigorate you, increase your focus, decrease your anxiety, decrease your pain, increase your oxygenation, decrease stress and muscle tension, and more.

I have done tons of research for you — from personally attending live Transcendental Breathing events to workshops on yoga breathing techniques to more traditional medical training in lung physiology, respiration and oxygenation patterns, experience in using respiratory interventions like incentive spirometery and lung percussion, years and years of hands on lung auscultation, as well as decades of reading the latest medical literature.

And after all that, I can report back to you that I have four favorite, simple, fun, and effective breathing tips.  I’m going to share them with you, right now.

4 Ways To Use Your Breath To Feel Instantly Better:

 


 

1.  Use the power of three:

 

It truly only takes three deep breaths to boost vagal tone, slow your heart rate, boost oxygenation, calm the mind, increase focus and productivity, stimulate digestion, and reduce stress.

Just three deep breaths — just 3! — try them right now.  You will instantly give your body a mini-break and your brain a mega-boost.

One of my favorite ways to take three breaths is to use a 4-7-8 pattern.  This exercise is simple, takes almost no time, requires no equipment and can be done anywhere.
  • Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound.
  • Close your mouth and inhale quietly through your nose to a mental count of four.
  • Hold your breath for a count of seven.
  • Exhale completely through your mouth, making a whoosh sound to a count of eight.
  • This is one breath. Repeat the cycle two more times for a total of three breaths.\

The absolute time you spend on each phase is not important; the ratio of 4:7:8 is what is important here… spending twice as long exhaling as inhaling.

If you have trouble holding your breath, speed the exercise up but keep to the ratio of 4:7:8 for the three phases. With practice you can slow it all down and get used to inhaling and exhaling more and more deeply.

This exercise is a natural tranquilizer for the nervous system. Unlike tranquilizing medications, which are often effective when you first take them but then lose their power over time, this exercise is subtle when you first try it but gains in power with repetition and practice.  Use it whenever you are aware of internal tension.

 


 

 

2. Incorporate grounding:

 

To relax into a longer breath work session, it is really helpful to incorporate movement — in this case, walking.  And here is the key to make this breath work even more powerful: do it grounded.

Walking barefoot on the earth during walking meditation is the hands-down easiest way to drop out of your monkey mind, calm your thoughts, and center your awareness down in your heart (or even better — down at your feet!)

And being grounded naturally boost vagal tone, so along with your breath work, you are exponentially calming your central nervous system, releasing stress and anxiety, calming your heartrate, lowering blood pressure, boosting your circulation and oxygenation, releasing muscle tension, brightening your mood, and giving your body a head-to-toe fresh start.

Grounding supports your vagal tone so well that it actually helped premature infants in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to improve outcome.  Read this article on my blog right here to find out more about that important study.

If you are suffering from trauma, from insomnia, from anxiety, from depression, from anger, or from any other stressor (and who isn’t?) support your recovery and release by simply doing ten minutes of grounded walking.

If you have never done a walking meditation, you are in for the biggest treat.

In the video below, I sneak you into my favorite walking meditation — using a labyrinth!  I also share with you some super easy ways you can create your own labyrinth, so even if you don’t have access to a labyrinth (and even if you don’t have any of your own yard space to create one)  you can still do a walking meditation.

Literally drawing a spiral with a piece of chalk on a sidewalk square, or simply walking up and down a line on your driveway, or using tape to create a line or spiral in your garage, all of these ideas can create a grounded walking meditation path that will literally transform your day:

 

 

 

 

  • Any cement, sidewalk, concrete surface outside is grounded, so anywhere you can kick your shoes off and walk a line or a spiral on a sidewalk or concrete will get you grounded without ever getting your feet dirty!  For example. Walk up and down a sidewalk slowly.  Walk back and forth across your driveway slowly.  Draw a chalk spiral on your cement basement garage or basement floor to walk on.  Or get fancy and use tape to create a labyrinth in your garage or basement on the concrete floor that you can use forevermore!  This video shows how you can create a labyrinth out of masking tape, in just minutes.
  • Of course, any dirt path outside would make a fabulous grounded meditation path, just slowly walk it up and back.
  • If you love the feeling of grass on your bare feet like I do, you can always walk on any safe green space in a grounded walking meditation.
  • Most garden paths and patio walkways are grounded, because slate, tile, brick, even gravel is all grounded when they are lying on the earth.  So almost any outdoor walkway is an instant grounded meditation spot when you walk it barefoot.  In this video I show you 15 different outdoor surfaces that will ground you, beyond just grass.
  • And if you are lucky enough to have your own yard, you can even spray paint a little spiral on your grass to use it for several days in a row.  If you love it you may be inspired to create your very own labyrinth path by laying stones or brick to create a personal labyrinth in your yard or garden.  I know this is on my bucket list to do one day!

If you can take ten minutes to do this walking meditation — grounded — every day for the next week, I believe with my whole heart it can change your perspective on your entire life, fill you with a sense of hope and fresh positivity, and help you feel physically better too.

Join me as I do a walking meditation for you and then let’s plan out a way for you to do it too:

 

 


 

 

 

3.  Use a chime:

 

If it’s absolutely not possible for you to go outside for a grounded walking meditation today, don’t worry.  I’ve got you! You can use an auditory cue, like a chime, to focus on while you take three deep breaths, and reap similar benefits.

In the 15 minute video below, I share with you 3 easy ways to remember to take a few deep breaths throughout your day… click the video below and come do it with me!

Together we will experiment with using a bar chime (my favorite,) a tuning fork, and a wind chime.

For bonus points, do this outside.  One thing I love about a bar chime is that it is very small and lightweight, so you can easily slip your bar chime in your purse, backpack or pocket… and head outside to get grounded.   Using a chime for breath work outside grounded combines tip #1 (taking 3 deep breaths) with tip #2 (doing it grounded) so you can reap the benefits of both very, very easily.

I also love having a chime out on my desk to help visually remind me to take a few deep breaths throughout my work day, and I also find it helps give me a focus (and is especially helpful for auditory folks!) to help distract my mind from taking over with thoughts.  You can grab the chime I use right here.

Meanwhile, watch this video now to give it a try and let’s breathe together:

 

 

 

 

As I mention in the above video, the work of Dr. Herbert Benson, M.D. paved the way for understanding how the brain actually improves performance when you take breaks during stressful tasks.

 


 

 

 

4.  Add a mantra:

 

In the video above I also mention a study that was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry on June 20, 2018,  that found that short sessions of repeating a mantra actually helped resolve PTSD symptoms in veterans even better than traditional talk therapy did.

Wow!  Here are the details:

  • 173 veterans were enrolled in the study, 89 of them using mantra therapy (focusing on a repeating a mantra) and 84 using talk therapy (with a focus on problem solving) for an hour long session once a week for 8 weeks straight.
  • They were randomly assigned to each group and the assessments were done blindly (meaning the therapist did not know which patient was doing which therapy when assessing symptoms and monitoring progression) before treatment, after treatment on week 9, and at the two months follow up after the conclusion of the study (week 17.)
  • The results showed that focusing on a mantra provided a clinically significant, meaningful improvement to the veterans PTSD symptoms that were sustainable, and worked particularly well for insomnia… better than the talk therapy did.
  • Patients from the mantra group actually had larger improvements to their insomnia and equally impressive improvements to other symptoms, such as depression and anger.

 

The results showed that the mantra results were as robust as traditional talk therapy treatments that were trauma-focused.

That means, that even if you have resistance to focusing on the actual traumatic event to work through your trauma, you can have every bit as meaningful recovery when you focus on a mantra as opposed to the trauma!

This is huge news.

And equally exciting, the improvements from mantra therapy were sustained for months after the treatment ended, with more patients being PTSD free after mantra therapy than traditional talk therapy (60% of mantra patients were PTSD free at 2 months after intervention, compared to 40% of the talk therapy group.)

This study is so incredibly valuable I feel, because as someone who admittedly has a very difficult time with meditating for any length of time, I feel that knowing that just repeating a single word has literally been clinically shown to make a significant difference in improving quality of life and treating insomnia, anxiety and other PTSD symptoms is such a relief.

Slowing down your thoughts and practicing sustaining a point of attention on just a single repeated word or phrase was shown to help patients cope with daily anxiety, fear, anger, depression and insomnia.

You can practice a healing mantra any time, any where.  Here are a few suggestions, but feel free to come up with your own word or phrase that centers you best:

 

breathing in:  I am lovable

breathing out:  I am loved

or

breathing in:  I am safe

breathing out:  I am strong

 

Take a minute long break to use your breath to center you when you feel your stress increase sharply — it’s simple, it’s convenient, and it’s free.

As a huge advocate for grounding therapy, you know I am a big fan of free therapies that allow patients to take control over their own health.

So knowing that you can take a few mindful breaths, or repeat a healing mantra, or ring a chime, or even head outside for some grounded breath work as you do a walking meditation… is such an awesome thing.

Each one of these suggestions will measurably reduce stress in the body and give your health a boost,

And breath work is very private and very powerful.

 


 

So here are some suggestions to implement these tools today:

  • start the day with a few deep breaths while you breathe a self selected, calming mantra in and out
  • have a tuning fork or a bar chime or in your work or living space to use throughout the day whenever stress hits, or simply re-play the video I share with you above where I hit the chime for you and breathe right along with me
  • get grounded outside, walking mindfully in a straight line or along a spiral for 10 minutes during a mid-day break
  • stand outside before bedtime each night, looking up at the moon and stars and taking 3 more grounded deep breaths in and out, slowly
  • breathe your mantra in and out for a few deep breaths each evening as you lay in bed before sleep, or in a relaxing epsom salt bath soak just before bed.

 

It only takes a few minutes to start to reap the benefits of using your breath to boot your health… and the results can be maintained sustainably for the rest of your life.  Woot!

Moving onwards and upwards…

xoxoxo, Laura

A Dozen Unique Ways To Use Water To Improve Your Health, Right Now

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Known as the “Elixir of Life” for good reason,

water is absolutely critical to our well being in every way.

 

Not only are we primarily made up of water (over 70% of our body is pure water!) but water has a healing property that goes way beyond simple hydration.

Today, I want to share with you all the different ways that we can use the power of water to support our Well Being from the inside out.

But first, I want to run through some of the surprising symptoms of dehydration, and I’d like you to tally up how many of these symptoms you are feeling right now.  If you feel even one, you are already volume depleted and you need to immediately go drink a big glass of water!

It’s really important to recognize signs of dehydration as we head into the cooler months, because believe it or not it’s very very easy to get dehydrated in winter.  With heating systems turned on, the air we are breathing is incredibly dry.  The drier the air, the more water we lose from our bodies, in several ways.

Did you know that urinating and sweating are not the only ways we lose water each day?

We actually lose water through every breath, called respiratory water loss, and we also lose water through our skin, called transcutaneous water loss, which happens even when we aren’t sweating.

Both of those losses are occurring every minute of every day — a minimum water loss of over 3 cups of water just from breathing and skin evaporation — and increase dramatically when the air is dry… drying out our lungs and our skin rapidly.

 

 

 

What Does Dehydration Feel Like?

 

Dehydration is life threatening.  Severe dehydration means our organs absolutely can not function normally and leads to seizure, organ failure, and death.

But did you know even very mild levels of dehydration might be affecting you on a daily basis?

Dehydration can lead to or exacerbate common conditions such as constipation, dry skin, bad breath, headache, and high blood pressure.  How many of these symptoms do you have right now?

 

  •  Dry Mouth:

One of the first symptoms of dehydration is dry mouth, which leads to bacteria overgrowth and bad breath.  If you notice bad breath, you might consider: are you chronically dehydrated?

  • Dry Skin:

Your skin turgor is another indicator of dehydration.  If you’ve been concerned about your skin feeling dry or more wrinkled, double check that you are drinking enough fluid each day.

  • Pain

Pain is actually a symptom of dehydration as well, often starting with a headache.  And low fluid status can lead to headaches and brain fog as well, as the fluid volume of the brain gets depleted from dehydration.  I’ve literally had patients with a raging headache drink a glass of water and have the headache clear completely.  The next time you have a headache or any type of pain, make sure you drink a glass of water and then re-evaluate your pain levels before reaching for a pain reliever or medication.  Dehydration makes all pain worse, as the volume of the organs and joints deplete, dehydrated ligaments and cartilage get injured more easily and dehydrated discs in the spine allow increased pinching of nerves and muscle cramps increase as electrolytes deplete.

  • Constipation

Having sluggish bowels is another classic symptom of chronic dehydration.  Recent studies have shown that water status is the NUMBER ONE factor impacting regularity.  More important than walking and more important that even fiber intake, water intake can turn constipation issues around completely.  Drinking water has more of an impact on encouraging  healthy bowel movements than fiber supplement or exercise… in fact, I’d go as far as to say fiber supplements clog people up more often than they help.  In general, a constipated person is a dehydrated person.  You can fix that right now — go grab a glass of water.

  • High Blood Pressure

Another classic sign of chronic dehydration? High blood pressure. When we decrease our water intake, our blood gets thicker, harder to pump, our blood volume decreases and our heart rate increases and our blood vessels constrict.  All together, this means your blood pressure raises and stays raised.  If you are having blood pressure issues, it is more important than EVER to be extremely vigilant about your hydration status!

  • Digestive Issues

Dehydration also impacts your entire gut lining, and chronic dehydration can give rise to stomach ulcers and absorption issues as the mucosal layer stops secreting it’s protective film.

  • Dry Cough

Not only does the gut lining need to be well hydrated to function, but also our entire respiratory lining does too. Our lungs absolutely require a moist mucous membrane to function.  In chronic dehydration, the mucus membranes in our respiratory system dry out and become more vulnerable to dust, pollen and other irritants, leaving you susceptible to an irritating, non-productive, dry cough.

  • Urinary Tract Infections

Getting more UTI’s than usual?  Our entire urinary system (and therefore the health of our kidneys) depends on having enough volume to use liquids to flush toxins from our body.  When we can’t do that, we set ourselves up for issues with kidney function and a higher rate of infections.

  • Weight Gain

Another little known side effect of chronic dehydration is weight gain.  As we become volume depleted, we begin to feel thirst, which is often confused with hunger because the body is craving intake of any kind (knowing that most foods will provide some form of hydration, your body sends out the message that it is hungry when it is volume depleted in any way.). As a result, we eat when what we really need to be doing for our true health is rehydrating.

  • Bad Mood & Brain Fog

Did you know that even mild dehydration affects our mood?   A study published in The Journal of Nutrition showed that study participants reported decreased motivation and increased feelings of anxiety when mildly dehydrated.  On top of that, headache, fatigue, difficulty concentrating and decreased physical activity all were increased during dehydration. And the effect of dehydration on mood was even more pronounced in women than in men!  And this medical review published in the Journal Of the American College of Nutrition showed that our attention spans and even our short term memory fizzles when we are dehydrated.

 

 

 

So the next time you have a headache, or feel anxious, or notice your blood pressure or weight creeping up…

….drink a glass of water and re-evaluate.

 

It could be that chronic dehydration has been a key factor contributing to your symptoms all along.

And don’t rely on thirst to remind you to drink!

Prevent dehydration before you even get thirsty. Dehydration begins when we are just 1% volume depleted, but thirst doesn’t set in until our body is about 2% volume depleted. By then we have already had effects on our mood, energy level, ability to think clearly, and pain levels.

Instead of waiting for thirst or darkened urine to remind us to drink, let’s utilize these preventative strategies for staying well hydrated, instead of treating dehydration!

The goal of this article isn’t to teach you how to address dehydration but to have you protecting your hydration levels by preventing dehydration in the first place.  Read on:

 


 

 

My 12 absolute favorite ways

to use water to boost your health:

 

1. Begin and end every single day drinking a big glass of water.

 

Drink a full glass of water each AM before you even think about reaching for orange juice or coffee.  In fact, don’t allow yourself to drink anything at all before you’ve had a glass of water.

Replenishing the fluids you lost overnight every as well as the fluids you may have overlooked drinking all day long is a great lifelong habit to get into.

Do it daily so it becomes an automatic routine!

 


 

 

2.  Drink a glass of water whenever you feel hungry.

 

Use hunger as a reminder to hydrate!

We feel hunger on and off all day long, and so we can remember to drink water on and off all day long too.

Thirst is often confused with hunger, because your body is craving INTAKE of any kind!

Drink a glass of water before each meal and whenever you feel thirst *or* hunger, and you will stay well hydrated all day long.

 


 

 

 

3.  Include fruits and vegetables at every single meal.

 

Fruits and veggies are full of water (many being more than 90% water!) and minerals that help you maintain essential fluid volume.

Processed foods like packaged snacks actually dehydrate you.

Fruits and veggies are a great way to hydrate *while* you eat!

The most hydrating ones include:

  • melons
  • berries
  • cucumber
  • celery
  • leafy greens
  • tomatoes and
  • bell peppers

 


 

4.  Use an unrefined sea salt when you cook, instead of table salt.

 

It’s truly important to make sure you have enough minerals in your diet so that you can absorb and retain the right hydration balance.

Trace minerals, found in sea salts, are essential to the body’s function.

In fact, trace minerals actually help enhance another healing practice that I feel is crucial for our well being… grounding!  I talk a little more about why minerals are so essential for grounding in this video I made for you here.

Even if you don’t think hydration is an issue for you, most of us are mineral depleted whether we hydrate well or not.

You might want to consider a daily mineral supplement that you drop into a glass of water, which will further encourage you to drink drink drink throughout the day.  My favorite is Concentrace Mineral Drops, which I have waiting for you in my trusty online dispensary here.

 


 

5.  Moisturize your skin to decrease transcutaneous water loss.

 

By removing any dead skin, making sure your skin is moist and hydrated, making sure you are not mineral depleted, and making sure you drink a big glass of water so you are well hydrated internally before grounding, you can maximize how quickly and how easily your body gets grounded through contact with the earth outdoors.

My favorite moisturizer combines two of these principals in one: it moisturizes to repair the lipid bilayer of your skin, and it also adds crucial trace minerals to your body as well.  It is a trace mineral lotion and you can find it right here.

 


 

6. Switch from soda to sparkling water.

 

If you love carbonation and find it difficult not to crave soda, make the switch to sparkling water instead.

The sugar and chemicals found in soda (even diet soda!) mess with your metabolism and absolutely do not *count* towards your 8+ cups of water a day.

Get your carbonation fix from sparkling water instead and reap the hydration rewards!

 


 

 

7.  Allow tears… always.

 

The healing power of water can work magic for helping to support our entire well being, from clearing our mind frame to easing pain.

Because water is such a transformative medium, it’s no coincidence that the basis for our blood, sweat and tears is water.

So the first way to use the power of water to transform your well being is to allow the tears… always.  Never hold them back.

Let the water of your tears release your emotions and lift them from your body.

Water is the ultimate medium of flow and healing… in fact, water is the body’s natural choice of release as well, as you can see in the fact that the body uses tears to facilitate an emotional release.

Tears help encourage the flow of emotions through the body (both tears of joy and tears of sorrow!) and allows us to release tension more easily.

 


 

 

8.  Sweat it out!

 

The other way that the body uses water as a form of energetic and physical release is through sweat.

Heat uses the energy and flow of water (the blood in your circulatory system) by increasing flushing — fluid in, sweat out.

Exercise is an essential, wonderful, medically proven treatment plan for so many different health conditions, shown to be effective in treating everything from insomnia, to depression and anxiety to fibromyalgia and other chronic pain conditions… even preventing dementia and extending our lifespan!

Make sure you find some physical activity that you can routinely do that allows you to sweat… whether you like hiking, yoga, kickboxing, jogging, or even, in a pinch a more passive form of sweating like a sauna (which has been recently shown to decrease dementia rates!) — find a way to embrace sweating and be sure to replace that fluid flow with tons of fresh filtered water both before, during, and after sweating!!!

 


 

9.  Use the grounding properties of water to detox and release, even inside your home.

 

Take a long hot epsom salt bath soak (add some baking soda and apple cider vinegar to turn it into a detoxing experience) to soothe muscles, calm and relax you before bedtime, or simply relax in a warm shower and envision the water carrying the tensions of the day down the drain for you.

And here is a video I made for you showing you how even the water inside of your home is likely grounding you!  No wonder showers, baths, and even washing the dishes can feel so stress relieving and centering:

 

 

 

 


10.  Use water to increase the strength of grounding outside as well.

 

Another great way to use water to heal is to ground in areas that are naturally moist: by the ocean or river or lake… even the morning dew on a blade of grass!

There is a reason that doctor’s routinely gave out prescriptions for spending time by the sea when they had no idea what else to do to help an ailment.  That’s because the earth has healing energy to give you, and if you add moisture to that you increase your own conductivity and healing accelerates.

 

moisture + you + earth = expedited healing

 

Here is a brand new video I just made with Stacey, experimenting with grounding in water.  It was one of the last really warm days we recently had at the very tale end of summer (which, where we live, is in September!)

I hope you enjoy it.  You can really see and feel the difference of how relaxed and centered we become after spending an hour grounding through water:

 

 

 

 


11.  Make sure your air contains moisture!

 

You lose over two cups (or a half liter) of water just from breathing each day.  And another cup or more just through your skin.  If the air is dry (which all of our indoor heated air is…) then that water loss is dramatically higher.

Use steam/humidifiers to help hydrate your air and support the hydration of your mucosal membranes, decrease respiratory water loss and even decrease transcutaneous water loss.

If you can’t humidify your whole house, humidify the area that you spend the most time — usually, the bedroom.  If you breathe mositurized air for the 7 or 8 hours you spend in bed each night, you will notice a difference, waking up with my hydrated skin and mucosal membraned.

 


 

 

 

12.  Drink water in an intentional way, to energetically reset the body from the inside out.

 

You lose about 2 liters (8 cups) of water each day… through skin and lungs, as we’ve talked about, and also through urination, bowel movements, tears, and sweating.  You can utilize this high turn over of fluids to your advantage and hydrate hydrate hydrate during times of worry or sorrow or stress more than any other time of your life.

Look at every glass of water you drink as a way to add a healing intention into your body, infusing every single cell of every single tissue of every single organ system you have with healing support.  You can simply say a prayer, say an intention, even just *think* an intention as you hold your cup of water and silently bless it before you drink it.

Let your body be flushed out inside and out and with every urination or bowel movement or tear or droplet of sweat you shed, recognize you are flushing the old energy down the drain and making way for new healing.

The beautiful, life affirming, healing properties of water can not be matched with anything else we put into our bodies.

 

 

 

And one last note bit of really good news.  The water filter that I use in my home, and that I routinely recommend to patients, is this one.  

But sadly, it has been sold out for over three months now.

 

Well… it’s finally back in stock!  Woot!!!

 

Why do I recommend you filter your water before drinking it, especially if it’s from the tap?

Hundreds of medical studies have shown that fluoride affects everything from cognitive function and cardiac function in humans, to diabetes, fertility and more in animals… so I recommend avoiding fluoride in water and never use fluoridated toothpastes.

Fluoride is an enzyme inhibitor, point-blank.

Even the minuscule amounts of fluoride added to the public water supply accumulates in bone.  It is estimated about 50% of the fluoride we consume is eliminated, and 50% is stored in our body, mostly in our bones.  So miniscule amounts of fluoride adding to our bodies sip after sip after sip equals a not-so-minimal exposure.  Over a lifetime, these levels can reach high proportions… decreasing bone density and causing brittleness.

For a nation whose women have epidemic proportions of osteopenia and osteoporosis, it would be counter productive to continue to drink fluoride on a daily basis… and then use prescriptions to try to combat the osteoporosis that develops later in life.

 

Studies have shown that the rate of hip fracture in elderly is directly increased in areas that fluoridate their water.

 

The truth is, you are even get fluoride through your foods.  Plants store fluoride found naturally in the earth AND from the water used to irrigate crops.  Yep, even organic crops have fluoride in them from the irrigation water.

Statements from reps of the National Institutes of Health recommend that people who drink large quantities of water should not drink tap water, but instead switch to bottled water.  We are just getting so much exposure to fluoride, to intentionally consume extra fluoride, whether through drinking water or toothpaste, is way too much.  Your skin absorbs fluoride as well, so even when you are showering or taking a bath, you are absorbing fluoride.

We also know fluoride is being taken up by our cardiovascular system as well.  A study published in the journal Nuclear Medicine Communications definitively proved that fluoride is absorbed into your vascular system. Researchers followed 61 patients after administering fluoride and found that 96% of them had fluoride uptake in their cardiovascular walls.

In a nation with heart disease steeply rising, this doesn’t sit well with me.  Direct absorption to of fluoride into our cardiovascular walls (and a significant correlation between cardiovascular events and fluoride uptake) makes it all the more urgent for us to avoid fluoride all together.

And now new reports are revealing something even more disturbing, if you can believe it — fluoride lowers IQ.  I am routinely asked at the dentist’s office if I would like to give my children a concentrated fluoride treatment.  And affect their still-developing brain?  Uh… NO.

I feel that a fluoride filter to remove fluoride from your drinking water (as well as not using fluoridated toothpaste) is a mandatory investment to protect the long term health of your heart, your bones, your brain, and all the organs in between!   Not only will the right filtration unit filter out fluoride (double check that yours does, most do not) but it will also filter out chlorine and other nasty chemicals added to the public water supply, as well as nasty chemicals that are unintentionally in our water supply like lead, arsenic, pesticides, perchlorate, and even pharmaceutical drugs.

 

 

I keep a water filtration system out on my kitchen counter space so that not only am I drinking pure, clean, fluoride free water, but the beautiful filtration unit serves as a visual reminder to DRINK every single time I walk it, or am standing in the kitchen preparing a meal.

This has really helped me to remember to maintain my hydration status.

And here is the best one, finally now back in stock.

 


 

 

Today, try to use the healing flow of water to support your Well Being in many many different ways…

…knowing you are doing more than just avoiding dehydration, you are boosting your immediate — and long term — health!

xoxo, Laura

 

 

 

Getting Outside Today… A New Idea I Tested Out For You And Loved

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Time for some uplifting content.

 

In fact, for the rest of the year, I am planning tons of fun, uplifting blog posts that include fun “trying it out for you” videos (like the one below!) free access to my health ebooks, and even some uplifting artwork that I am painting right now!

So today, with this beautiful fall weather arriving, I want to encourage you to head outside and get moving!

To walk the walk, instead of just talk the talk, my friend Stacy and I went to a local Nia class and to try out a new form of exercise.  Outside, in the fresh air and sunshine, grounded with bare feet, boy did we have fun!

I highly recommend doing Nia outside — just put on a YouTube video (here’s a fun one!) if you don’t have a local outdoor class in your area — and get grounded to the earth while you move your precious body!

 

 

 

 

Turns out, Nia is a very gentle, low key, easy way to get your body moving, while still feeling the tremendous perks that traditional exercise gives.

I barely felt like I exerted myself, yet my body felt completely mobilized, stretched out, energized and refreshed afterwards!

The medical literature backs our experience up.  Even gentle exercise is life changing — reducing your risk of morbidity and mortality significantly… even if you have been sedentary for most of your life.

 

Truly it is never EVER too late to start moving your body and reaping the benefits.

 

New research published March 8, 2019 in JAMA Network Open shows that introducing physical activity later in life, even in your 60s (and as you’ll see in other studies below, in your 70’s and beyond as well) has a similar benefit of increasing lifespan as you would enjoy if you had been exercising since young adulthood.

Researchers looked at over 300,000 patients and found that exercising for an average of 2 hours a week was enough to protect longevity, significantly dropping their risk of dying from heart attack, stroke, cancer, and all causes of death combined.

And here is the interesting part: folks who were inactive but started to exercise in mid-life had every bit the protection to their lifespan as folks who were active from adolescence on.  Participants who reported routinely exercising from adolescence had a 33% decreased risk of dying for any reason.  And participants who reported being inactive during young adulthood but increasing activity in midlife enjoyed a similar benefit, at a 34% decreased risk of dying for any reason.

 

 

 

 

This echoes what researchers found in a study published April 2017 in the Journal Of Geriatric Cardiology, where researchers looked at almost 3,000 adults, with an average age of 71, and evaluated their mortality rates in relationship to how much they exercise.

What they found is that adults who exercised routinely dropped their risk of dying from heart attack or stroke by almost 60%.  And again, the interesting part is how you are never too old to boost your health with exercise. Because even though the average study participant was in their 70s, if during the study they increased the amount they exercised even more, their risk of dying from a cardiovascular dropped by an additional 25%!

So truly, I mean it, it’s never too late to start exercising routinely, because even if you up your activity level starting when you are in your 70s you are significantly, measurably protecting your health and prolonging your life.

 

 

 

 

Then, in another exciting medical study published May 30, 2019 in Neurology Clinical Practiceresearchers found that not only does getting active extend your life, it keeps your brain sharper.

After conducting a meta-analysis of 98 different randomized controlled trials looking at older adults (average age of study participants was 73) researchers found that adults who exercised, even with low impact activities such as yoga and tai chi, enjoyed statistically significant improvements to brain function.

And this included adults who already had mild cognitive impairment and even adults who had outright dementia — all were found to improve their mental processing speed, attention span, executive function and global cognition in functional brain studies.

 

Why am I saying it’s never too late to start?

Because the key to this study was not to have exercised your entire life or to exercise for long periods of time or to exercise more strenuously or even more frequently…

…it was only to exercise at all.

 

In fact, this study showed that you can begin to see these brain boosting results from exercising after only 6 months.

It didn’t take years and years to see benefit (statistically significant benefits began to accrue after only 6 months) and it didn’t take hours and hours of exercising (statistically significant benefits began to accrue after only 2 hours of exercise a week — that’s roughly 17 minutes a day.)

After analysis of the data, the only thing researchers found that made a difference in whether or not the exercise provided brain benefits was that the total time accumulated to roughly 17 minutes a day.

17 minutes, people!

 

 

 

 

And it doesn’t have to be strenuous activity.

A study published May 2019 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that replacing just 30 minutes of sitting time a day with even light physical activity decreased mortality rates significantly.  And again, here’s the clincher: the benefit of replacing sedentary time was actually increased even more if you were older than 75 years old.

So light activity decreased mortality rates in adults older than 75 years old more than it decreased mortality rates in younger age groups. In other words, the older you are, the more that activity of any kind increases your lifespan.

So even at 75?

You’ve got no excuses not to put off that activity you’ve always kind of been curious about.  It’s never too late to lengthen your lifespan through exercise.  You can start today by doing Nia and having some fun!!!

Outside, if at all possible!   And here’s why:

 

 

Directly touching the earth impacts your metabolic function, and as I found out, it can even help you lose weight.

 

The first study to look at the basal metabolic rate of grounding was published in 2010. 

In this study, half of the participants were grounded and half were sham-grounded in a double-blind placebo-controlled study. 

After grounding (or sham grounding) the patients for 40 minutes, all of the parameters of metabolic function immediately improved in all of the grounded patients, but that boost was not seen in any of the ungrounded patients. 

Heart rate increased slightly, respiratory rate increased, and there was an increase in blood oxygenation in the grounded patients during grounding.

 

But here’s the interesting part…

…even when they stopped grounding, there was a persistent metabolic boost of increased heart and respiratory rates.

 

Think about how this small boost to your metabolic function helps you over time.

With a slight increase in respiratory rate, you are actually getting more oxygen into your blood (which, while grounded, is pumping and flowing more efficiently) and as the blood is improved in its flow and delivery, it’s carrying more oxygen throughout your entire body. 

It’s like exponential support, because you are delivering oxygen, antioxidants and nutritional support to all the tissues in your body, on top of the direct conductive support you receive from the grounding.

This got me thinking. 

I decided I wanted to study my own patients because I wondered if, by boosting our metabolism through touching the earth, we would see a change in weight over time. 

So I personally enrolled a dozen overweight patients into an informal private study on grounding and weight loss.  I followed them for 10 weeks, measuring weight, energy, mood, sleep, and pain, with weekly weigh-ins and assessments. 

 

In my study, the instructions were to touch the earth outside directly for 15 minutes a day… and that was it. 

 

I told them not to change their diet at all. I wanted them to eat everything they had eaten before in the same quantities and in the same fashion. 

I told them not to start new activities or to change their activity level at all.  I wanted to see metabolic changes from short periods of daily grounding over time.

Following those patients with weekly weigh-ins and weekly assessments was very, very interesting.

 

 

Most of the patients lost clinically significant amounts of weight

— between 4 and 15 pounds in the 10 week study period —

doing nothing more then adding in daily grounding for just 15 minutes a day.

 

The fact that the majority of patients lost weight with no change in their diet and no change in their exercise pattern is priceless.  

I started thinking about the amazing results I saw in my patients and how encouraged I was by them and how wonderful it was to really see these powerful results first hand.

As an intuitive physician I tend to get more holistic-minded patients coming to me for support.

Many of them are already really healthy.

They eat the best they can eat.

They meditate all day long.

They do yoga morning and night, they drink raw juices, they sleep well and they take all kinds of supplements. 

It seems that it should be impossible for a human being who’s breathing that well, who’s eating that well, who’s hydrating that well, who’s sleeping that well and who’s getting all the nutritional building blocks they need to feel bad… and yet they still do.

They come to me telling me there’s something missing in their health.

They have weight that they cannot seem to lose or they have another chronic health issue. 

And every single time, after I talk with them extensively about their health practices, it turns out that grounding and docking themselves to the earth is that missing piece.

 

 

A lot of my patients are healers themselves.

They’re wellness-life coaches or they’re acupuncturists or they are energy healers or they are nurses or physician assistants or physicians themselves.  They know a lot about healthcare and a lot about the health of the body and so they’re doing all the checklists.  They’re doing everything right.

But the one missing piece of never touching the earth is enough to throw everything off because conductive healing is not something you can truly get in any other way.

Particularly if you’re an empath, weight may be an issue because you are absorbing energy and connecting and feeling other people’s energy and your body is becoming the tank for that energy and it’s stressful.  You gain weight.  Your body is using weight as a way to try and neutralize this stress and to ground itself if you are not grounding.

It’s increasing its mass to try to ground the energy that you’re taking in when you’re healing or working with or connecting to your loved ones or family members or coworkers or patients or clients.

You are constantly taking on energy.

And your body is really trying its best to help you by gaining weight to try and offset that energetic burden.  I tell patients who have weight problems and chronic pain issues, your body’s doing the best it can.

It’s actually trying to neutralize things for you.  It’s trying to ground itself. 

But we don’t want to take on the stress or the pain from others. 

Taking on the burdens of others and carrying it in our ungrounded bodies is not really helping anyone because now it’s harming you as well.

What we want to do is be that neutral grounded supported vessel so that we can be feeling our best, so that we can help others the best.

 

 

To do that, we have to reintroduce this missing piece of grounding.

 

As my study revealed to me, it only took a few minutes a day to make significant changes in the physical body.

In just 10 weeks, some people lost up to 15 pounds with no change in their diet or activity and I feel on a spiritual level that’s because all the energy they were taking in from all the people they care about every single day, was finally discharged.

Their body became a clearer, more stable vessel.

Their body no longer needed a larger physical size in order to try and ground the soul energy of the person living it.

When you can directly ground with the earth, your body doesn’t need to ground itself.  It can then become the avenue for expression, instead of the dumping pit for everyone else’s stress and strain. 

Directly grounding to the earth takes the pressure off of your body and that is what is most impressive to me about grounding.

 

 

Want more tips on how to safely, easily, and effectively reset your weight in a way that supports your innate health?  

I’ve got you.  

 

I’m running my 5 day Weight Reset Online Class to give you the 5 pillars of sustainable, feel-good weight loss.

I’ve based this course directly off of the medical literature and my 20 years of experience helping to support my patients with their weight loss goals.

Hop over here to sign up and reserve your spot today:

Yes!  I’m joining into this

Weight Release & Reset Online Class

 

And meanwhile, today’s take home point is this:  move your body outside for 17 minutes today.

Repeat again tomorrow.

Bonus points for doing it grounded when you can.

Make this a lifestyle change that starts right now and you will reap the benefits for the rest of your life.

To your resilient health!

xoxox, Laura

Your History Of Trauma Is Making This Pandemic Harder On You Than Others

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If you feel like you are having a harder time dealing with the stressors that this global pandemic has caused than some of your other friends or loved ones, there is good reason.

If you’ve had a history of trauma, or a history of greater stressors in your life before the coronavirus circled the globe (such as serious illness or injury, death of a loved one, divorce, unemployment, financial struggles, legal troubles, etc…) than recent medical studies prove that this pandemic actually is harder on your mental health.

We’ve known for a while that a history of trauma makes subsequent traumas more likely to cause PTSD.

  •  A study published in 1999 showed that a history of trauma increases the risk of getting PTSD with a subsequent trauma
  • and a study published in 2008 backed this up by finding that a history of trauma increases not only the risk of getting PTSD but also the risk of developing depression (Major Depressive Disorder, also known as MDD) when faced with a new trauma.

Today’s medical study (just published in June 2020) takes it one step closer: researchers looked at folks with a history of trauma and their response to a natural disaster.

The natural disaster studied was a major earthquake that struck the coast of Chile, killing over 500 people and displacing over 800,000 people.  The researchers had already assessed 3,000 of residents for the history of trauma, the presence of PTSD and MDD, and had completed a questionnaire measuring how many major stressful life events a participant had endured.

Then, a year after this study was initiated, residents faced a deadly natural disaster in the form of the earthquake and subsequent tsunami.   A year after this natural disaster, participants completed a post disaster assessment.

Researchers found that individuals who had 4 or more predisaster stressors had a significantly greater chanced of developing PTSD than those with no predisaster stressors.

They also found that having even one single predisaster stressor increased the chance of developing depression, and that every single additional predisaster stressor increased the odds of having a major depressive episode significantly higher.

 

 

 

 

Their conclusion was that having a history of stressors actually gives you stress sensitization, making you more vulnerable to the negative effects of a new trauma (including natural disasters, like our current pandemic) and increasing your risk of mental health issues.

This is particularly important to know in the midst of a pandemic, as it might help explain why naturally you may be feeling more overwhelm in the face of this global crisis than some of your other friends or family members who don’t have a history of stressors or trauma.

While it might make you feel better to know that your history of having major life stressors and traumas makes it completely natural and expected for this pandemic to be hitting you in a deeper way than it is hitting others, you deserve some good news.

 

Is there good news with trauma?

Actually, yes.

 

 

 

The largest meta-analysis to date on trauma recovery (looking at data from over 11,000 relevant medical studies) suggests that the best long term recovery after trauma is simply talking about it, no medication required.

Published in JAMA Psychiatry on June 12, 2019, reasearchers looked at direct comparisons between talk therapy (psychotherapy) and drug therapy (pharmacological treatments) in patients with PTSD.

  • They found that in the long term, talk therapy helped more, being slightly superior to drug therapy both immediately following treatment and in long term follow up.
  • The studies they looked at ranged from 2 months to 6 months long, and this meta-analysis showed there was no advantage to using drugs in recovering from PTSD.
  • This means that drugs are now no longer recommended for first line treatment of trauma, as there is no indication that they are beneficial.

While I am certainly not against the use of medications when they are needed, they should be used sparingly and either short term (as they do not show any long term advantage) or only for patients who don’t find improvement after talk therapy alone.

 

Be encouraged by this.

 

 

 

This means that the vast majority of folks can be helped — and helped best — by talking about trauma instead of medicating it away.

 

Connect with others.

Reach out for help.

Don’t feel like you are going crazy and don’t feel like you must go it alone.

We all have trauma, we all do.  But if your history of trauma is making this pandemic harder on you than on others, you can absolutely get through it.

There is long term benefit from connecting to others and speaking about it.  Treatment is not relegated to a psychiatrist’s office nor does it need to be prescribed away.

In fact, as I blogged about here, PTSD can actually be significantly helped by something as simple and as accessible as repeating a mantra.

It’s true.

 

Here is that blog post and several other blog posts I’ve written on trauma recovery for you.  Please read any you are drawn to, for instant support:

 

 

Want more advice on how to naturally heal from stress and trauma?

 

The medical literature is clear… just communicating about trauma is every bit as healing (or even more healing) than all the best medications we have to treat trauma.

So simply joining a class, talking to a therapist, or connecting with others to heal can be just what you need to feel better than you have ever felt.

And here’s the best part…

those who move through trauma can actually be healthier than those who never went through any trauma at all.

 

It’s incredible to believe that trauma can actually strengthen your health but it is true.

In my Trauma Resilency & Recovery Class I go over the medical literature that proves that trauma can actually be adaptive and empowering, and I show you all the tools to use trauma to boost your own health in ways you never could have imagined possible.

 

 

 

Next week my trauma healing class starts, and I don’t want anyone to not get support for processing and releasing trauma.

So if financial stressors are one of your significant stressors right now, I’ve got a stipend to cover you.

Just click here to have your costs instantly covered by 70%.

I developed this class based on my extensive research into the best of what the medical literature has proven to us about how to release trauma once and for all and become healthier for it.

No matter what you have gone through, you absolutely do have the ability to rebound from from it and create a new normal and a new health set point.

Everybody does.

Your body naturally want’s to trend back to full and complete wellness… mind, body and spirit.

I’ll give you the tools to get there and walk with you through it.  Class emails come directly into your inbox so that you can start healing, right from the safety and comfort of your own home.

Join this course by clicking right here today.

And check in with others that you love that you know face significant stressors and might benefit from taking this trauma healing class right alongside you.

This is the last week to sign up.

 

 

Moving onwards and upwards…

xoxoxo, Laura

 

 

The Pentagon Already Knows That EMFs Are Impacting Brain Function… Here’s Why

Posted

 

 

Adding to the most recent blog post I wrote for you on the harmful health effects of man-made EMF exposures, a new article published in Forbes last week shows that even the United States Department of Defense is taking EMF radiation and it’s effects on the human body seriously.

 

Especially the effects that man-made EMFs have on the human brain.

 

If you have teens, family members, co-workers, friends or other loved ones that scoff at you when you mention how cellphone radiation and other man-made EMF radiation sources are affecting your ability to think… this is the blog post to share with them.

If they don’t listen to your kind and helpful suggestion that EMF exposures are something to be aware of and protect against, maybe they will take the Pentagon seriously.

The Pentagon is examining the disturbing possibility that high levels of  EMF radiation in the cockpit may be affecting the mental judgment of pilots so much that it could be causing them to crash their aircrafts.

 

 

 

The issue is so pressing — with a published report revealing that spatial disorientation causing 72 aircraft crashes in the US Air Force in the past 20 years (1993 – 2013) resulting in 101 deaths and a total monetary cost of 2.32 billion dollars — that the Pentagon has launched a new study looking into the impact of EMFs on the pilots ability to stay focused, to make clear and precise decisions, and to remain spatially oriented while in the cockpit while being subjected to extremely high EMF levels.

The new study is called: Impact of Cockpit Electro-Magnetics on Aircrew Neurology (ICEMAN), and I will absolutely keep you posted about and and all results from this study as they are revealed.

Phase 1 of this study will identify and measure the EMF exposures of pilots in the cockpit, and Phase 2 of the study will assess mitigation strategies (basically — shielding the pilots from the cockpit EMFs to see if shielding is effective at improving pilots ability to think more clearly, stay focused and accurate, and ultimately prevent mistakes and fatalities.)

If you want to read through the ICEMAN study outline yourself, click over here and enter the term “ICEMAN” into the search bar.

 

 

 

What does this mean for the rest of us?

 

Well first of all, it tells you that even though your friends and family, and maybe even your own physician may not be aware of the harmful effects on human health that man-made radiation exerts, at least you know that the mental confusion, brain fog, headaches and irritability you experience when using a cell phone, spending time on your computer, surrounded by WiFi in urban environments, near cell phone towers and smart meters and more… is not all in your head.

In fact, we’ve known since 2011 that electrical signaling in the brain is what gives us the ability to maintain focused attention.

This is one of the reasons the government is looking into EMF exposures as an explanation for what is distracting the Air Force pilots and contributing to spatial disorientation and death.

The Pentagon reveals that recent research they have conducted showed that “human brains sense magnetic fields, and that this process is “jammed” (i.e., disrupted) by radio waves (RF), impacting brainwaves and behavior.”

So yep, any electrical signal that exherts an impact on normal brain function could considerably impact attention span — one reason why folks with autism, ADHD, ADD or other neurodevelopment disorders may have a sharp decline in functioning when subjected to man-made EMF fields, and why so many then improve functionality when screen time is limited, when shielding clothing is worn, when EMF sources (like gaming systems and cell phones) are removed from the bedroom and all other radiation sources (like routers in the home) are turned off at night.

 

 

The second thing this tells us is that even the government is aware of the necessity to come up with shielding solutions to protect the human brain from EMF exposures.

Those of us who are electrosensitive have already been aware of how drained and foggy we feel after prolonged exposures to man-made EMF radiation, and feel first hand that removing any sources of radiation that can be removed and shielding from the sources that can’t be removed can make an enormous world of difference.

An impressive medical study, published in 2017 in Immunologic Research, followed 64 patients with autoimmune diseases (such as lupus and multiple sclerosis) while they slept shielded with a silver fabric sleep cap (like this one) over their heads, for a total of 8 hours of shielding in a 24 hour period.

The results?

 

90% of the patients responded with a significant decrease in their autoimmune disease symptoms after shielding, which is a strikingly dramatic reduction.

 

 

 

You don’t have to be sick in order to shield your entire body and protect your long term health.

 

For tons of additional ways to decrease your current artificial man-made EMF exposures, for tons more ways to shield against exposures you can’t decrease, and — just as important — for ways to increase your exposure to healing, natural earth EMF fields through grounding, hop over here to read an article I wrote for you.

It’s my lastest, most up-to-date blog post on radiation, covering the effects of EMFs (including 5G) on the human body and ways to mitigate those man-made RF exposures, while increasing exposures to healthy, natural, supportive earth frequencies:

 

Shielding: Your Ultimate At Home Guide

+ How To Diagnose Electrohypersensitivity With Your Physician

(click to read)

 

As important as it is to protect against man-made EMF exposures, it’s just as important to help reorient your brain — and get your body into it’s natural healing state — by deliberately infusing your body with the earth’s natural electromagnetic energy fields.

This healing practice supports the health and function of every single cell in your entire body, by getting it back into resonance with healthy, healing, natural electrical fields.  Helping to mitigate the detrimental effects of man-made, artificial electrical fields.

 

This is done through grounding… simply touching the earth.

 

For a great, quick, 20 minute overview on the benefits of grounding to decrease and offset the problematic issues that man-made EMFs are causing, watch this recent interview I gave to Carico International:

 

 

 

 

 

To join into the Book Club I mention in this interview — hop over here — the book club starts on October 1st.

I can’t think of anything more important or timely to do right now than to make grounding a part of your daily self care routine.

And this book club, which takes only a few minutes a day and can be accessed any time and any where right through the book club app, quickly will help you turn grounding into a habit that will become automatic.

Protecting your health now and for the rest of your life.

 

 

 

 

So the next time you feel a headache come on after working on your laptop, or you feel your memory slip and you have trouble recalling your words as you talk on your cell phone, or you feel your brain go into a fog as you drive through an urban setting…

 

…just remember, it’s not in your head.

 

If brain fog and confusion from EMFs can cause highly trained Air Force pilots to crash billions of dollars worth of aircrafts, its certainly worth waking up to how EMFs in our daily lives may be impacting our workplace productivity, the impact it may be having on car accidents, and the negative impact it may be having on our human to human relationships, as we disengage from our loved ones and surrender to EMF induced brain fog.

If you are feeling confused, tired, groggy, foggy, dizzy, or have headaches after spending time in urban environments, at work, after using your cell phone or computer, go outside and get grounded.  Step away from the electronics and re-infuse your body from head to toe with the soothing, centering, natural pulse from the earth.  It’s there to ground you and recharge you.

 

You may also want to consider carrying a very discrete, simple to use, 5G ready EMF detection meter that can instantly reveal to you how much RF exposures you are under any time, any where.

It’s small enough to fit in the palm of your hand (and tuck away in your purse or pocket for use on the go) and is specifically designed for people with Electrohypersenstivity (EHS) so that any time, any where you can know their exposures in an instant.  Provides reliable detection of RF between 200 MHz and 8 GHz.

Checking your exposures as you travel, as you sit in a restaurant, as you hang out in your living room or bedroom, in your office or work space means that you can catch high EMF areas and moving away from them *before* you feel that headache, that dizziness, or that muscle tension creep in.    Here is the one I like most.

 

 

 

 

Offered to you with much much love, tons of hope for the continued education and discovery of the effects of man-made radiation exposures on the human body, along with excitement over the many wonderful solutions we are actively creating.

And of course, I’ll keep you posted on all of these studies, and all of these solutions, right here on my newsletter.

Thank you for joining me.

xoxoxox, Laura