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Tips on Avoiding Stress and Depression to Age Healthy

Apr 15, 2008
Excessive stress and depression can shorten your life span and drastically reduce your quality of life. Stress can speed up the aging process making it harder for your body to fight off illness and serious disease. Stress and depression affect your immune system and you may find you have more frequent colds, stomach problems, and other stress related problems. You can age gracefully and maintain better health if you take steps to ward off depression and stress.

What are some fun and helpful ways of relieving stress and depression? There are a few tips that may help you make the most of every day.

Eat healthy! This means stay away from refined sugar, empty calorie snack foods, and fatty meats. There are many choices of snacks and foods that will keep your body satisfied and feeling full. Eating chocolate or sugar products will not help depression. These foods may increase your symptoms of stress and depression. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, lean meats, and whole grains. You could be surprised how much better you will feel by removing processed sugars from your diet!
Exercise regularly. Physical exercise is important for many reasons. It keeps your body from growing stiff, decreases stress, and allows you to take in oxygen that is needed for the body to work properly. Start out walking or doing low impact exercises or yoga. Walk around the block, listen to the sounds of nature and let your mind go blank. If you are just beginning an exercise program, check with your doctor before you begin. A little exercise is better than no exercise at all.

Adopt a pet. It is well-known that a family pet will help relieve stress and anxiety. Nursing homes are allowing pets to be brought in because they have such a positive benefit on residents. Many senior communities and assisted living facilities allow pets and even encourage them. Play with your pet, stroke it or pet it, you will feel the tension slip away.

Take time to relax. You may feel you always have to be on the go, or doing something. You don't! Take the time to relax, drink a cup of tea or coffee and sit in a sunny room. Weather is gloomy? Watch the ever-changing patterns in the sky, the trees as they bend in the wind, and listen to the soothing sound of rain on the roof.

Does gloomy weather bring you down? Work each day to make yourself enjoy the day. Find something you are thankful for, call a friend, watch a favorite movie on TV, or take the time to engage in your favorite hobby or pastime.

Stress and depression will take a toll on your body both physically and emotionally. Think positive and make each day important. Enjoy your family, hold and look into the eyes of a baby, and treat yourself to a bubble bath or special outing. You will find you are aging in a healthy way and could give you a longer lifespan.
About the Author
Scott Meyers is a staff writer for Its Entirely Natural, a resource for helping you achieve a naturally healthy body, mind, and spirit. You may contact our writers through the web site. Follow this link for more information on Stress Management.
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