OXYTOCIN: NATURAL, FREE AND MOOD STABILIZING

On one of Deepak Chopra’s meditation challenges, I heard him say “Abundance is all around us, and it’s free for the asking.”  He was talking about flowers, fauna, blue sky, water–nature in general.

And THAT is also how you can increase your oxytocin, sometimes referred to as the “love” or “happy” hormone.

Let’s face it: With those hormone havoc challenges can come some pretty awful mood swings.

Following is an article I wrote for Creations Magazine (www.creationsmagazine.com) on Long Island, NY. It’ll tell you all about this wonderful hormone.

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The soul suffers when the body is diseased or traumatized, while the body suffers when the soul is ailing – Aristotle

As a health coach who specializes in natural hormone balance, one of the first things I advise clients is to increase their “love hormone,” oxytocin, especially if they’re experiencing mood swings and stress.

It’s completely natural, free, and readily available—but make no mistake: It’s also powerful, acting as a brain neurotransmitter that can gives you an overall feeling of well being. It’s sometimes even called the “trust hormone,” so any social anxiety is alleviated.

Oxytocin, which is particularly responsive to touch, is boosted during sex or childbirth, but you can access it in other ways, such as playing with animals or babies, hugging or shaking hands, gardening, dancing, seeing a friend, getting a massage, etc. If you live near a park, and the weather is nice, sit for a while and meditate.

OXYTOCIN:

Lowers cortisol. In small doses, cortisol, the “fight or flight” hormone, is okay. It gets us ready to flee from danger or get ready for that big test or event, but it creates havoc when it’s out of balance, resulting in: sleeplessness, exhaustion, weight gain, anxiety, negative thinking, and more. Balance is key, especially with hormones, so a healthy dose of oxytocin will help counteract excess cortisol.

Makes you laugh. Because you’re happy, you laugh and smile more—and smiles are one way to increase immunity. Oxytocin also supports serotonin, a chemical that stabilizes moods and affects every part of the body, from emotions to motor skills, so you’ll get a boost there, too.

Gives you a stronger sense of community. Oxytocin reduces social fears and stress, says the National Institutes of Health, in turn building self-esteem, trust, optimism, and better communication. That means better relationships; recent studies show that loneliness and social isolation are as dangerous to health as obesity, says Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

Makes you happier. Many of us have heard the term, “amygdala hijack.” The amygdala is the part of the brain that controls emotions. When it is not functioning properly, i.e., “amygdala hijack,” depression, anxiety, fear, excessive stress and more occur. However, oxytocin calms the amygdala so you can control your emotions and fears. That said, it’s only natural that you’d lean harder into your joy, giving you faith, assertiveness, self-possession and trust.

You’re more productive. Happy brains just work better, and much of that is because of the chemicals released by our thoughts. In an article in Psychology Today, it is explained that focusing on negative thoughts releases substances that slow the brain, possibly minimizing its ability to function. On the other hand, when we think uplifting and positive thoughts, it decreases cortisol and produces serotonin, which creates a sense of well being, helps us sleep and even helps us manage appetite.

Today’ s world can hand us a lot of stressors, and a lot of things can create that “mean girl” syndrome, including food, lifestyle and a lack of self-care. With some intention and a few tweaks to food and lifestyle, that “mean girl” will disappear forever.

ABOUT IRENE ROSS

Irene Ross is a health coach specializing in natural hormonal balance. A graduate of the
Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN), she conducts both private and group sessions.
Irene’s mission is to “rid the world of all those hormone stereotypes—one pill at a time.”
www.lifewellnesscoach.net.

Woohoo! Two Little (Phone) Classes on Weight and Sleep

 

 

 

Did you know that just a little sleep reduction can mimic the legal levels of alcohol intoxication?

Yup, studies have shown it. You may as well be drunk!

….AND….Do you ever wonder why you’re always so hungry, even after a big meal? Do you get frustrated when you spend hours at the gym, only to consume cake, pizza, or tear into that bag of potato chips?

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From anywhere in the world you can get a 30-minute phone class where I’ll explain how you can get deep, uninterrupted sleep–so important to health. OR you can take a class on controlling the “hunger hormone.”

OR, you can take both.

  1. Rock Your Sleep

Never let anyone tell you that “oh, it’s normal to sleep less as you age.” You can, and should, have deep, uninterrupted, blissful, dream-filled sleep at any age. It’s what keeps you youthful looking–and you’ll also feel great. (And by the way, sleep DOES affect weight.

   2. Say Buh-Bye to Uncontrollable Hunger Forever

I’ll tell you what the “hunger hormone” is, what causes it, and what you can do to control it–in 7 easy steps!

Questions? Concerns? I’d love to address them.  Feel free to e-mail me: rossirene93@gmail.com

 

Can’t Sleep? It Could Be Your Hormones

We all have an occasional night of sleeplessness–but if it’s a constant for you, there could be an underlying reason–and a hormonal imbalance could be the culprit.

From my latest in MindBodyGreen.Com

 

While almost anything can cause insomnia, hormonal imbalances are a big reason for sleep disturbance. Hormone imbalances create vicious cycles—often triggered by underlying issues and then circling around to make those very same issues even worse.

“The first thing I always check is the adrenal glands (which produce cortisol, DHEA, and adrenaline),” says New York Tri-State Area doctor of naturopathic medicine Dr. Doni Wilson. “And then I check the gut, because stress causes leaky gut, and leaky gut causes inflammation that affects the nervous system.” Knowing this, if you’re having trouble sleeping it’s important to look at the big picture and consider inflammation, your nervous system, and overall hormonal health. Here are ten hormone imbalances that could be jeopardizing your sleep:  Continue reading here.

Are You Making This Mistake When Eating?

 

I wrote this for The Huffington Post back in 2013–but it’s just as valid today. Mindful eating and rituals can help you control your weight.  Food has a big affect on hormones, sleep and overall well-being.

 

So while you’re being mindful, ask yourself another question:  “Is it worth it for me to feel lousy tomorrow–sluggish, irritable, bloated–for just a few moments of happiness eating this?”

Here’s the article:

“There’s scientific proof that even the smallest rituals can ultimately help us eat mindfully, resulting in portion control and possible weight loss.

 

A study published in Psychological Science shows that something as simple as singing happy birthday, wrapping or unwrapping an item or even cutting it in half before eating can affect the perception of food. This applies to anything, whether it’s cake, candy or a carrot.

It’s thought that perhaps the delay time between performing the ritual and the actual consumption builds anticipation. That means flavor is enhanced and we eat slowly and mindfully, giving our minds and body a catch to catch up and register satiety.

That’s a big difference from our fast food culture which encourages gobbling, mindless eating and multitasking. We eat far more than we need — portions are out of control and we continue to eat long after we’re no longer hungry. This causes us to feel stuffed, bloated and fatigued — not to mention what this gulping does to the parasympathetic nervous system, the place where digestion is regulated.

Here’s how I learned about the importance of the food ritual…..continue 

ABOUT IRENE

Irene Ross is a holistic health practitioner who focuses on natural hormonal balance.  To learn more, please visit:  www.lifewellnesscoach.net