Going through divorce takes a toll on emotions and can wreak havoc on the physical functioning of one’s body.
Stress puts the body on red alert, that one is facing danger and to get prepared. Chronic stress keeps the body in a hyper vigilant state instead of having down time between episodes.
Stress in divorce can particularly affect the cardiovascular system. How to mitigate the damage? How to make sure you’re coping with divorce and health?
Take supplements with your health care provider’s guidance.
Omega 3 protects the heart by maintaining an optimal rhythm and increasing blood vessel flexibility.Stress increases inflammation in the body and Omega 3 decreases it. The Journal of Psychiatry is studying the use of Omega 3 for people with depression and other mental health disorders.
A study done at Ohio State University on medical students indicated that it decreases mild anxiety. Participants took either a placebo or Omega 3 over a three month period. The results showed a 20% decrease in anxiety with the Omega 3 group, plus a 14% decrease in the pro-inflammatory compound interleukin 6.
Interleukin 6 can be an anti-inflammatory when within normal limits. It relays information between cells, regulates the immune system functioning and cell growth. It helps to stop colds and infections.
When the body has chronic low grade inflammation due to psychological stress, then interleukin 6 increases too much and becomes pro-inflammatory. This leads to diseases such as autoimmune disorders including rheumatoid arthritis.
Co-Enzyme 10 (Co Q 10) is an element found in the mitochondria of cells and is especially concentrated in the heart. It converts food into energy and reduces free radicals. A study at Tulane University in New Orleans indicated that Co Q 10 increased the ejection fraction (pumping ability of the heart) by 3.7%. It promotes healthy heart functioning.
Antioxidants are nutrients that include flavonoids that decrease free radicals. Free radicals are the waste products of cells that increase inflammation in the body.
Another function of some antioxidants is to deter these inflammatory elements from sticking to healthy cells. Brightly coloured fruit and tea are good sources of antioxidants, so put your feet up and enjoy that calming cup of tea.
Biochemical Pharmacology had an article which stated that Cucumin (derived from the spice Tumeric) decreased inflammation in ninety-seven or more “biological mechanisms.” One of these is decreasing pro-inflammatory interleukin 6.
Cucumin has been used in Ayurvedic healing for a few millenniums, particularly for gastro-intestinal problems.
Another Ayurvedic medicine that has been around for several millenniums is Holy Basil.
It reduces inflammation in the body and the stress hormone, cortisol.
Cortisol increases the heart rate, blood pressure and insomnia. Cortisol is responsible for the flight or fight response.
Holy Basil helped me to relax and get deeper sleep during my divorce. I continued to take it at least for a year post-divorce and have gotten positive feedback about it from others undergoing stressful lives.
B Vitamins get depleted when your body is under the stress of divorce. B6 is especially important for immune health. When the B6 level is low, then the production of White Blood Cells, T Cells, and interleukin 2 are decreased. These elements of the immune system fight off colds and infections.
B12 is required for cell growth and division. Middle age decreases B12 and stress does too, so consider particularly having your B 12 level tested.
Biotin is needed for the production of insulin and helps in the metabolism of glucose, fatty and amino acids. You may want to take a multi Vitamin B complex supplement. I notice that I get more headaches when I am lax taking this supplement.
Aromatherapy helped me in divorce and beyond.
Nipping into Neal’s Yard for their fabulous aromatherapy products zapped my stress and anxiety. Therapist have recommended Clary Sage for those tensions headaches that come with divorce. Spraying Lavender on your face or pillow at night is relaxing and induces sleep.
Homeopathic remedies have helped many get through divorce too. Follow the path that is most comfortable to reduce stress for you.
Wendi Schuller is a published author who has conducted classes on various subjects. She draws upon her knowledge as a nurse, Neuro-Linguistic Programmer (NLP), and hypnotherapist, providing a blueprint to guide women through this difficult transition. Schuller hired an attorney for a court divorce, but decided to go the collaborative route instead and has worked with a mediator post-divorce.
Author of The Woman’s Holistic Guide to Divorce
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