(huffingtonpost)Feelings of stress can do far more harm to your body than good. Studies have repeatedly found stress to be the root of many chronic diseases such as depression, cardiovascular disorders and infectious diseases.
When you're stressed, a series of chemical reactions happen in your body that decrease the hormone cortisol's ability to regulate inflammation, which has also been linked to weight gain. Finding ways to reduce stress can improve your overall well-being both in the moment and in the long run.
Here are 3 things you can do instantly to reduce stress according to Dr. Ackrill:
Get A Hug
Do not underestimate the power of human connection as a form of instant stress reduction. "We need more touch, [which is] sometimes a challenge as we age," Dr. Ackrill writes.
“When we are stressed out, we tend to get dehydrated,” explains Dr. Ackrill. “Drinking water can be soothing and a way to help our body’s handle all the reactions that happen when we're stressed.”
Practice Deep Breathing
"This is one of the oldest and cheapest forms of stress management known to mankind!" writes Dr. Ackrill. "Mindful breathing resets brain patterns, increases heart rate coherence, lowers blood pressure and many more effects."