I often hear my patients say, “oh, it’s just stress”. No big deal, right? Um, not.
This is how your body reacts to holiday stress…

Nervous System – the so called “stress hormones” are released… you know, that “OMG” feeling you have when you’re almost in a car accident, chased by a bear, abducted by aliens, or experiencing holiday stress, that’s the stress hormones. It makes the heart beat faster, raises blood pressure, slows digestion (that’s where the phrase “I almost crapped my pants” comes from), and increases glucose levels in the blood.
Musculoskeletal System – Muscles tense up and may trigger headaches, migraines, low back pain, etc.
Respiratory System – Rapid breathing, can lead to panic attacks.
Cardiovascular System – Increases heart rate with stronger heart muscle contractions. Repeated episodes can cause inflammation of the coronary arteries which is a precursor to heart attacks.
Endocrine System – The “stress hormones”, cortisol and epinephrine are released, the liver produces more glucose.
Gastrointestinal SystemEsophagus: Stress may prompt you to eat/drink more producing acid reflux or heartburn.  Stomach: Nausea, pain, or even vomiting if the stress is severe.  Bowels: Stress can cause diarrhea, constipation, or both.

So here is my BIG holiday present to you… drugs. From the highest quality pharmacy in the world, your brain. It’s the happy hormones. That feeling you get when you play with a puppy or see a little kid open his favorite present on Christmas morning. The happy hormones are endorphins, serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin.

Here is the recipe…
Do in any order, in varied amounts until desired effect is achieved.
– Give a hug.
– Hold the door open for a stranger.
– The next person that is mean to you, make a goal of being nice back to them until they smile.
– Eat something healthy.
– Get Your Chiropractic Adjustment.
– Dance with grandma (yours or someone else’s).
– Tell you dad, brother, son, or all three that you are proud of them.
Feel free to make substitutions as needed.

Have a Happy, Peaceful Holiday.

Dr. Deborah Pearson, a Chiropractor serving Roswell, Johns Creek, Alpharetta, and Norcross.

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