Support Your Health During Stressful Times

For thirteen years as a nursing professor I posed this question to my nutrition students-- “How does stress and life as a nursing student effect your eating habits? Inevitably students always had one of two answers: “As a nursing student I have a very busy schedule with studying. I know I have to make good food choices to keep myself healthy to do all the work I need to do.” OR “As a nursing student I have a very busy schedule with studying. I have no time to make good food choices with all the work I need to do.” What is the difference between these two groups? Does the group that prioritizes healthy eating have more time? Do they have more money? The difference between the two groups is their attitude. April is Stress Awareness Month. Stress can have a significant impact on our immune system and overall health. While we sometimes have little control over the stressors in our life, we can control our attitudes towards stress and how we take care of our bodies while under stress. Research has shown that our immune systems function best when supported by adequate sleep, regular exercise, and balanced food choices. If your stress level is high make sure to do your best in these key areas: • Make it a priority to go to bed earlier. Poor quality sleep is a trigger for inflammation and can increase your sensitivity to stressors in your life. Important health supporting hormones are released during each stage of sleep, but hormones produced in the early stages of sleep can especially be beneficial while under stress. • Our quality of life, energy level, and health are significantly impacted by our [...]