The holidays are behind us, and life if back to it’s usual (and often hectic) pace. Everyday stress is all around us: busy schedules, deadlines, crying babies, etc. Fortunately, our friend the tea leaf can offer a little relief! In the seemingly endless list of beneficial health benefits of tea, here’s a little bit about tea’s role in managing stress.
A Little Background on Cortisol & Stress
Cortisol is a hormone that is released by the adrenal gland when one experiences stress. This mechanism is an evolutionary response to help us mobilize our bodies to respond quickly to harmful situations. While small amounts of stress can be beneficial, prolonged periods of stress can be detrimental to your body. It’s important to monitor your stress levels and stay aware of stress-relieving remedies to maintain health cortisol level.
Tea’s Polyphenols to the Rescue!
Tea is full of polyphenols. As you may remember from previous posts, polyphenols are a class of antioxidant that help your body maintain homeostasis. These polyphenols also help lower the amount of cortisol in the body after a stressful event. Research suggests that with enough polyphenols circulating in your body, the negative effects of excessive cortisol can be counteracted!
And Theanine, too!
Tea is also full of L-theanine, an amino acid that also helps your body fight off stress. Theanine relies on its natural psychoactive abilities to not only decrease mental and physical stress, but also improve various cognitive abilities. And better yet, it’s also believed to strengthen the immune system! (There’s probably nothing more stressful than getting sick in the middle of the a stressful situation!)
So, next time you find yourself experiencing a little more stress than usual, turn to a trusty cup of organic tea for some relief! It’s a delicious way to keep cortisol levels in check, and keep you feeling mellow!
January 23 2011 10:32 am | Tea and Health