Monday, February 4, 2008

Work Stress, Hack Your Metabolism, Ashwagandha

Let's attack the work atmosphere. The biggest problem in most work environments is stress.

Stress comes in many forms. A few examples are:

Deadlines-too much to do in too little time.

Office 'Soap Operas"-crabby backstabbing coworkers who will do anything to get to the top a.k.a. 'yes man' or 'brown-noser'. Both equally annoying and almost impossible to ignore.

Office Romance-a no no in my book, but where else are you going to meet someone you can get to know on a daily basis? A pub? No thanks. Just make sure if it gets hot and heavy that you have an exit plan to avoid the uncomfortable atmosphere you're going to create.

Micromanagers-managers that watch and comment on every little thing you do. Can't go to the bathroom without being questioned. This needs to be adressed to the manager causing the offense or possibly upper management who might not be aware that it is going on. Be tacticle though. No one like a whiner.

So where am I going with all this? Relaxation exercises that you can do before, during, or after work.

I recently came across Zenhabits, a blogsite devoted to zenning out. Check out the 17 Unbeatable Ways to Create a Peaceful, Relaxed Workday

Learn how to Hack Your Metabolism with Their recent post states..."Personal trainer and blogger Lauren proposes that you can bolster your metabolism by eating enough (not too little, like most people who diet), eating more frequently (5-6 small meals a day), and adding more protein and fiber to your diet. Exercise should also be added to your daily regimen. Weight-training, building muscles, and doing more high-intensity cardiovascular exercise are critical."

Herb of the Day-Ashwagandha-A personal favorite of mine

Ashwagandha root is a herb of the ages. It is the 'ginseng' of Ayurvedic medicine, the traditional medicine of India and is considered an 'adaptogen', a term used to describe herbs that improve physical energy and athletic ability, increase immunity to colds and infections and increase sexual capacity and fertility.

One reason for ashwagandha's reputation as a general energy-promoting, disease-preventing tonic may be its effect on the immune system. A number of studies have shown significant increases in white blood cell counts and other measures of strengthened immunity in rodents given ashwagandha or certain chemicals extracted from the herb.

Ashwagandha may also have a mild sedative effect on the central nervous system and in animal studies it has been shown to be a muscle relaxant. It is commonly used to increase vitality, particularly when recovering from chronic illnesses and pain management for arthritic conditions. Ashwagandha may also help regulate blood sugar which aids in suppressing sugar cravings.

Research shows ashwagandha may be a promising alternative for cancer treatment and prevention. Ashwagandha seems to show positive effects on the endocrine, cardio, and central nervous systems. It is one herb that could help your body produce it's own thyroid hormones. Ashwagandha is used to restore male libido, cure impotence and increase male fertility. It is widely used in southern Asia as a male sexuality tonic.

Latin Names: Withania somnifera, Physalis flexuosa Common Names: Ashwagandha, Winter Cherry, Ashgandh, Achuvagandi, Amikkira-gadday, Amkulang-kalang, Amukkira-kilzhangu, Amukran-kizhangu, Asagandha, Asana, Asgandh, Asundha, Asvagandhi, Fatarfoda, Hirimaddina-gadday, Hirre-gadday, Penneroo-gadda, Pevette, Sogade-beru

Suggested Properties: Strengthens immune system, antioxidant, rejuventaing. abortifacient, adaptogen, antibiotic, aphrodisiac, astringent, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-anxiety, anti-tumor, immuno-modulating, diuretic; narcotic, sedative, tonic.

Uses: Increase immunity to colds & infections, vitality, male fertility and libido. Combats impotence and helps regulate blood sugar.

Indicated for: Insomnia, Slows tumor growth,Anxiety,Reduces Cholesterol

Preliminary studies indicate that the herb helps to reduce the negative effects of stress, slow tumour growth, treat anxiety and insomnia, and reduce cholesterol in addition to increasing sexual performance. Ashwaghanda is generally safe at the doses recommended on the packaging. In high doses it may have steroidal activity similar to Creatine.

Research on ashwagandha has concluded that extracts of the plant has a direct spermatogenic influence on the seminiferous tubules of immature rats presumably by exerting a testosterone-like effect1. It is could also a potential source of hypoglycemic, diuretic and hypocholesterolemic agents2. Because ashwagandha has traditionally been used to treat various diseases associated with nerve tissue damage related to the destructive molecules known as free radicals, some researchers have speculated that the herb may have antioxidant properties. Free-radical damage plays a role in normal ageing and in such neurological conditions as epilepsy, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease.

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