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How To Calm Restless Legs and Sleep Like a Baby

How to Calm Restless LegsI decided to write a post on how to calm restless legs after experiencing it myself recently. I had heard of it sure, my mother had complained of it, but until I actually had it myself it just never really occurred to me how AWFUL it really is. I mean, they just don’t want to stay STILL and you can’t sleep and you can’t relax. It’s horrible when you are trying to sleep. So I went online to try and figure out what was going on, why I was having it and how I could fix it.

What I discovered for myself was that my hormones were out of whack and I was essentially experiencing what a lot of pregnant women or women in perimenopause and menopause have to go through.

You have my sympathies. Truly.

Restless legs in pregnancy happens in about 19% of pregnant women. And while they say it doesn’t cause serious health problems I can assure you when you can’t sleep, that feels pretty serious to me. Because having severe fatigue, especially when you are pregnant is just not a good thing.

How to Sleep with Restless Legs

Basically, you can’t. If you have them, they aren’t going to let you unless you try and do something to make them stop. Prevention is key, so first I will discuss what you can do to try and prevent the RLS from happening in the first place, then I will tell you what you can do IF it is too late and your legs are a twitching.

What To Do About RLS – Help Restless Legs Rest


The first thing you can do is start moving at lunchtime. Instead of sitting at lunchtime, go for a walk.
Second, get your circulation going in the afternoon by jogging in place for a few minutes.
Third, take a break at work and get up and stretch and walk around for at least 5 minutes.

At the end of your day, stretch your legs – get a leg massage.
Unwind with a hot bath – this helps for some. Others need to chill out and use ice packs to calm those restless legs.

CHECK YOUR VITAMINS!
Are you getting enough Iron?
– Iron deficiency can cause RLS

How’s your alcohol intake?
– Drinking alcohol can make RLS symptoms worse.

Also, avoid eating late. Heavy meals can also increase rls symptoms.

Are you taking any prescription medications? If so, check their side effects, rls might be listed.

Tips To Help RLS


– Get regular, moderate exercise
– Use a heating pad to soothe your rls symptoms
– Use ice or a cold shower (Where to place ice packs for restless legs? For me, below knees helps the most.)
– Don’t overexercise! Moderate exercise is the way to go, excessive can cause your symptoms to worsen
– Avoid nicotine and caffeine close to bedtime
– Keep a regular sleep schedule

As I mentioned at the beginning of my post, I was experiencing RLS due to a hormonal imbalance. What I uncovered for myself was that my estrogen levels were either too high, or out of balance with my progesterone (meaning I had low progesterone so my estrogen levels were more extreme).

If you have a hormone imbalance that could possible be due to low progesterone, it is recommended to take Vitamin E, a B-complex (especially getting enough B6). Melatonin and Evening Primrose Oil can also help increase progesterone levels.

Progesterone is a hormone naturally created by our bodies, however it is also the hormone that creates all the others (i.e. Estrogen and Testosterone.) It is depleted easily by factors such as stress, exercise and lack of sleep. So help your body out, try to stay calm and relaxed as much as possible. Take your vitamins and see if some small simple relaxation and vitamin changes can help your body to balance out.

Do you have any tips to help out RLS sufferers? Please leave a comment below.

Your Friend,

Tess
NurturingYourBody.com

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Make Money Doing What You Love

10 Ways to Reduce Stress

10 Ways to Reduce StressStress, as you probably already know, is a really bad thing for our bodies and our lives. Not only can stress be emotionally damaging but it can actually cause physical illness and sometimes even death.

The definition of stress: “pressure or tension exerted on a material object” and/or “a mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances” in itself makes it obvious that if you are feeling it, it’s not a good thing.

From Stress.org, they say it is not a useful term for scientists because it is a “highly subjective phenomenon that defies definition”. However, while it may defy definition for scientists because they have no way of measuring it, in its current definition coined by Hans Selye, stress is “the non-specific response of the body to any demand for change.” Studies done on lab animals have shown that stress can cause stomach ulcers, shrinkage of lymphoid tissue and enlargement of the adrenals.

I think we can all agree that these findings cannot possibly be exclusive to animals and because of this, finding ways to decrease or eliminate stress in our own lives should become a top priority.

Below I have outlined some of the best ways to reduce stress and anxiety and help you.

10 Ways To Reduce Stress


1. Meditation To Relieve Stress

Meditation is probably the top one you’ve heard about because it forces you to slow down. You must take time out for yourself to do this, you must be present in the moment, you must focus on your breathing and be still. Anxiety and stress management can both benefit from using meditation as a way to cope. Setting aside just 5 minutes per day can be extremely beneficial.

2. Exercise

Exercising makes the top of this list because fitness isn’t just to keep your body looking good. Exercising is great for your brain too. The chemicals released, known as endorphins, interact with the receptors in your brain and actually reduce your perception of pain. If you are suffering from depression as well, exercise is one of the best ways to combat the blues. Endorphins act in a similar way to that of morphine, they are known as the feel good drug. Ever heard of “runner’s high?”, that’s the endorphins and they can help reduce stress, get rid of anxiety and depression, improve your self-esteem and improve sleep. And no, it doesn’t have to be crazy amounts of exercise. Getting out for a 30 minute walk everyday can greatly reduce your stress levels.

3. Journal:

Writing in a journal every morning is a highly effective way to handle stress. By writing down everything that is bothering you (in The Artist’s Way, “morning pages” are prescribed) in the morning, it helps clear your head and improve your mood for the day. The more you do it, the more it is effective. Sometimes we need someone to talk to, but we can’t always get that – journaling is the next best thing to getting things off your chest, and THAT is a huge way to reduce stress.

4. Practice Deep Breathing:

Going along with the #1 way, meditating, deep breathing is not only an excellent way to reduce stress, but the extra amount of oxygen just 5 minutes of deep breathing per day can do actually has been proven to help your body function better. It’s amazing how shallow our breaths actually are when you think about it. Being mindful to take deep breaths will bring more oxygen to your system and can help you tremendously.

5. Get Regular Massages:

Not just a luxury. Getting regular massages is excellent for your health. The time you take out for “you” to get a massage will decrease your stress as well as helping your body to feel better overall. It’s wonderful for both your mind, body and soul. So…if you can afford them, get them. If you can’t, figure out how to. Spoil yourself a little in this life. It just might help you live longer.

6. Read:

Reading both fiction and non-fiction is a great way to relax and unwind. This will naturally help you de-stress. However, I added reading to this list primarily to point you to some of THE best resources out there that can give you some simple ways to relieve stress. Actually reading How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, The Power of Now and The Sedona Method will help you to lower your stress levels and for some, eliminate them. When you know how to beat the worry, know how to cope with things being thrown at you in life, your stress will naturally dissipate.

7. Laughing:

Laughing truly is the best medicine. So whether you watch a comedy, read a funny book or get together with friends. LAUGH. You simply can’t feel stressed when you are laughing. It’s not possible.

8. Listen to Music:

Music is a great way to unwind, as I discussed in my post Calm Relaxing Music for Stress Relief. I highly recommend finding something you like (heavy metal is fine too, whatever makes you happy and relieves your stress!) Music, next to laughter, can heal many problems.

9. Find a New Job:

If you need workplace stress management, you have two choices. Either learn how to deal with your current place of employment, i.e. by figuring out where the stress is coming from and removing it if possible. Or two, get a new job. Find a job that makes you happy doing what you love and the stress will go away.

10. Take Frequent Naps:

Last, but not least, take naps! I know you aren’t a child anymore, but they’ve actually done studies that have shown that people are more productive and happy (and yes, less stressed) when they get more sleep. Naps are a great way to squeeze in a few more minutes or hours that you are lacking at night.

They’ve also done studies that show that getting even small breaks throughout the day is more beneficial to you than sleeping for 8+ hours at night. So if you can, take a 30 minute nap around lunch time, or a few 5-10 minute breaks each hour in the afternoon. At the very least, after dinner take a short 1 hour break. You’ll likely find that you’re more productive at night after you wake, and that you sleep better when you finally head off to bed.

What reduces stress typically will work for everyone IF YOU TAKE THE TIME TO DO IT!! The problem is, most people are so wrapped up in their woes, their drama, work, family, obligations and so on, that they simply don’t STOP to care for themselves.

But you know what? Taking care of yourself on this earth should be no different than the first thing they teach you on a plane if something happens and you have to put on an air mask.

What do they tell you?

PUT YOURS ON FIRST…then help the person next to you. You are no good to anyone if you can’t breathe, if you pass out or die because you didn’t tend to yourself first. So tend to yourself FIRST right now and THEN tend to the rest of us. We’ll all be better off for it, especially YOU!

Find the best way to relieve stress that works for you, and do it regularly. Your body, mind and soul will thank you and so will everyone who knows you. Stress is something that can be passed on to another. Wouldn’t you rather pass on a smile?

If you have any other tips you’d like to share, please leave a comment below 🙂

Your Friend,

Tess
NurturingYourBody.com

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