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    How to combat stress in your life


    How does stress do all this damage? Stress increases cortisol. Elevated cortisol levels result in glucocorticoid receptor resistance which causes a failure to down-regulate the body’s inflammatory response.3

    Chronic inflammation causes that list of problems.

    Reduce your cortisol

    Reducing cortisol levels takes effort but can be done.

    Certain foods can reduce cortisol, including: wild-caught salmon

    • Dark chocolate

    • Garlic

    • Berries

    • Olive oil

    • Turmeric

    • Green and chamomile tea

    Whole, unprocessed foods are beneficial to reduction of cortisol as well.

    Reduce sugar and caffeine, which increase cortisol.

    Supplements may help, especially those considered “adaptogens.” These return the body to a more balanced state and include:

    • Arctic root

    • Aashwagandha

    • Bacopa

    • Ginkgo

    • Schisandra

    These are all common items in health food stores, and thankfully, Amazon.com.

    Related: Why it’s OK to be bossy

    Tracy Schroeder Swartz, OD, MS, FAAO
    Tracy Schroeder Swartz currently practices at Madison Eye Care Center in Madison, Alabama. She serves as Education Chair for the ...


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    Optometry Times A/V