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Keys to Emotional Wellness

We often focus on improving physical health, but May is Mental Health month and is the perfect time to raise awareness about the effect your emotional wellness has on your overall health and happiness. Evidence is growing that mental health is directly linked to physical health, especially cardiovascular function, gut health, and the immune system.

What is Emotional Wellness? 

Optimal emotional wellness is the ability to produce positive emotions, moods, thoughts, and feelings, and adapt when confronted with adversity and stressful situations. A key aspect of emotional wellness is resiliency, a physical and mental skill that is crucial to overcoming to life’s challenges. While we do not know exactly what adversity will come into our lives, the steps we can take in preparation and the skills we can practice in the moment produce a more resilient and positive result in the face of hardship. The severe or chronic degradation of emotional wellness can develop into a disorder, such as depression or anxiety. Multiple systems in your body affect your emotional wellness but primarily the brain, gut, adrenal glands, and the related hormones and neurotransmitters control most of your emotions and stress.                                                                           l

How can I improve my Emotional Wellness? 

Everyone is different, but there are several steps you can take that have been shown to help emotional wellness:

    1. get quality sleep - a regular bedtime, dark room, and a detox from technology before bed can all significantly improve sleep quality
    2. exercise - just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood and reduce stress
    3. get outside - spending time outside, especially in the sunlight, has been shown to improve mood and sleep. Exercising outside in a perfect activity 
    4. eat an anti-inflammatory diet/paleo based diet - opt for whole foods (i.e. veggies, fruits, fish, pasture-raised meats, healthy fats,), hydrate very well, and eliminate fried and processed foods, alcohol, and artificial ingredients 
    5. strengthen social connections - whether with romantic partners, family, friends, neighbors, mentors, or others, positive social connections have been shown to influence our biology and improve our emotional wellness
    6. practice mindfulness/breathing/meditation - These ancient practices help to reduce stress, center one in the present, and make the body more resilient                                                                             l

 What are positive actions to take in a stressful situation?

Despite our best efforts, we often find ourselves facing adversity. In these moments there are some beneficial actions to take:

  1. breath - when you breath deeply it calms your nervous system and sends relaxing messages to your brain
  2. ground yourself - consciously connect yourself to the ground or even grab a physical object to help anchor yourself to the present
  3. pause - take a moment or two to process the situation. This helps to reduce impulsivity and improve communication 
  4. try to respond, not react - Responding means you think through the situation and what you want to have happen in an interaction or conflict. You are measured, thoughtful, and allow creative ideas to enter the process. Reacting, however,  is usually instant, with little thought, and often results in a negative outcome


 Can what I eat affect my Emotional Wellness?

Yes, what you eat and drink have a major impact on your emotional wellness. A diet rich in vegetables and fruits, pasture raised meats, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates have been shown to improve emotional wellness. Healthy fats and varied protein sources are crucial for neurotransmitter support and hormone function. Complex carbohydrates digest slowly which provide the body with a steady supply of glucose. Rapid increases and decreases of glucose levels in the blood have been linked to mood disorders. Additionally, abundant consumption of fruits and vegetables provides the body with critical micronutrients such as polyphenols which protect your cells from oxidative stress and optimize their function. They also provide fiber which nourishes your beneficial gut bacteria. Equally important is tp avoid damaging foods such as processed and fried foods, unhealthy fats, artificial ingredients, alcohol, and some stimulants such as nicotine and caffeine. These all require your body to work harder to detoxify, taxing your body's resources and leaving you more vulnerable to stress and adversity. They also can alter your neurotransmitters and damage your neurons. 


Are there any supplements that can help with Emotional Wellness?

Yes, in addition to diet and lifestyle changes, there are also various supplements that have been shown to boost moods and help emotional wellness:

  1. Adaptogenic Herbs - like their name suggests, are plants that help your body adapt to stress. They help your adrenal glands regulate levels of cortisol in your body. Examples of adaptogenic herbs are Ashwagandha, Rhodiola, and Passionflower.
  2. Neurotransmitter Precursors - specific amino acids such as 5-HTP and L-Tyrosine are critical for neurotransmitter production that are responsible for a healthy emotional outlook, including serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine.
  3. B-Vitamins - especially Folic Acid, B6, and B12, have been shown to improve levels of neurotoxic agents in the blood and improve symptoms of depression.
  4. Vitamin D - levels of the sunshine vitamin have consistently been shown to reduce the severity of depression and improve markers of emotional wellness.
  5. Omega-3 Fatty Acids - several decades of research have shown that the use of Omega-3 supplementation helps various mood disorders and improve inflammation markers and brain health. 
  6. Probiotics - there is a direct link between the brain and the gut and a healthy gut microbiome has been shown to improve mood and mental health.
  7. Magnesium - a critical mineral that is used by the body in hundreds of processes including the stress response and maintaining mood stability. 

Several of these beneficial compounds are conveniently found together in Pure Encapsulations’ Emotional Wellness. If you would like more personalized guidance, sign-up for a FREE Wellness Consultation




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