If you're already frazzled, you might want to sit down for this: A new study reports that women today are more stressed than any other demographic out there. So stressed, in fact, it's the first time in history that women might not outlive their male counterparts.
Why? Because stress takes a toll on your entire system. It lowers your immune system function, makes you more likely to gain weight, disrupts healthy sleep patterns, and compromises healthy, healing food choices (i.e., reaching for the pizza delivery menu instead of taking time to cook vegetable stir-fry).
Yes, women can certainly have and do it all: A happy marriage, fulfilling career, kids, etc. But many women find themselves juggling both the demands of children and teenagers and helping out aging parents. The stress of it all is nothing to take lightly.
With back-to-school upon us, now more than ever we can use some expert tips to facilitate our many hats, and get those stress levels down.
Focusing on yourself doesn’t make you selfish
The kids’ school schedules (and their many after-school activities) are happening again. Much like the airplane "your oxygen mask first" rule, you simply can't help your kids navigate this transition if you don't look out for yourself. You-time is greatly underrated.
"Once Labor Day is over, September is a great month to think about prevention for yourself," says YouBeauty Wellness Advisor Beth Ricanati, M.D. "Have you scheduled your mammogram for the year? If you need it, have you scheduled your pap smear? What about that bone density [test] or colonoscopy? Take time this September to feel beautiful, both inside and out."
One of the most tried-and-true stress relievers is exercise, so even though your schedule is packed, you owe it to yourself to carve out some time to get the heart pumping. Make it feel less like a chore by recruiting friends to join you. “No time of year can beat the fall for refreshing walks with friends,” explains Fitness Expert Tracy Hafen. “Grab a resistance tube to carry with you, and stop every five minutes to do an upper body exercise. You can have a great time and complete a total body workout in 30 minutes.”
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