Under stress, the functioning of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal system suffers, due to which the balance of hormones that regulate metabolic processes is disturbed. The body actively and often irrationally consumes vitamins and minerals in order to protect itself from negative influences. It is important to support it during such a period, taking care of a full intake with food or in the form of supplements of all the necessary components. Equally important is the regulation and normalization of sleep, which also significantly affects the functioning of this system.
Nutrition and additional resources under stress
A complete healthy diet and regular replenishment of the supply of vitamins and mineral components support the work of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal system and restore homeostasis. A supply of beneficial brain nutrients is needed, including phosphatidylserine and some other lipid compounds found predominantly in fish and meat foods.
Various herbs are no less useful in nutrition — basil, tarragon, rosemary, wild garlic. These herbs have been used to prevent stress and disease for thousands of years, to improve vitality and maintain health when the body is exhausted, tired and active, hard at work. These nutritional components help to neutralize the effect of excess stress and lower the level of cortisol (stress hormone), which negatively affects the immune system, adrenal glands, mood and activity of the brain and body.
What helps regulate hormone levels
Regular intake of magnesium, theanine, B vitamins, quercetin and omega‑3 unsaturated oils provides protection against excessive stress and the effects of cortisol. In the body, hormones work in a complex, there are stress and anti-stress substances that mutually neutralize each other’s action. So, against the background of excess cortisol, the level of DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone), the precursor of sex hormones, decreases. This compound has a versatile effect on the body, its deficiency is associated with the provocation of various pathologies, worse stress tolerance.
A DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) supplement may be helpful for some people who suffer from stress. Steroid hormones and their balance are vital for a healthy metabolism in the body. Some people may need long-term DHEA support or supplementation of other adrenal hormones, but this is determined by a blood or urine test for hormones. Laboratory tests are necessary for those who have chronic pathologies, or when symptoms are doubtful and differential diagnosis is necessary.
Comprehensive protection against stress in pathologies
If a patient has osteoporosis, heart disease, thyroid disease, insomnia, diabetes, PMS, depression, or anxiety, they likely have HPA dysfunction and cortisol/DHEA imbalance. If against the background of various pathologies in life there is stress, complex protection is necessary.
In these circumstances, adaptogenic herbs such as basil, eleutherococcus, and rhodiola will be helpful. Supplements such as pantothenic acid, rutin, B vitamins, magnesium, and phosphatidylserine are helpful and work well with adaptogenic herbs to reduce stress levels.
Good nutrition and regular intake of vitamins help to reset and balance the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal system.
What are the benefits of vitamins for stress?
Pantothenic acid, the active form of vitamin B5, is an essential nutrient for the functioning of the adrenal glands and the brain, the entire nervous system. Classic symptoms associated with vitamin B5 deficiency include depression, fatigue, low blood pressure, insomnia, irritability, muscle spasms, anxiety, hair loss, weakness, and heart palpitations. Daily stress depletes the levels of this substance. Pantothenic Acid works best with B‑complex vitamins and magnesium to help nourish the adrenal glands and nervous system.
The nervous system and adrenal glands consume B vitamins for daily work. Long-term stress, indigestion and insomnia, immune dysregulation and fatigue experienced by patients increase the need for B vitamins. High consumption of carbohydrates, sugar and conventional drugs deplete their stores.
Sleep disorders and stress
Chronic lack of sleep, poor quality sleep increase stress levels. In addition, sleep suffers due to a deficiency of melatonin, a hormone of the pineal gland that has an antioxidant and anti-stress effect. This fact should be the reason for revising the conditions of sleep so that a person can get enough sleep and fully relax.
Turning off bright lights and electronics in the bedroom one to two hours before bed helps maintain the natural rhythm of natural melatonin in the body. But with irregular work schedules, frequent flights, or late bedtimes, melatonin supplements can help regulate sleep. Supplements restore full sleep by normalizing circadian rhythms and accelerating the process of falling asleep. The use of nutrients such as magnesium, thiamine, glutamate, which support the functioning of GABA in the brain, can help melatonin work.
The recently discovered glymphatic system of the brain, which is responsible for its “cleansing” of intermediate metabolites and waste compounds, is actively working at night. Its activity allows the nervous system to “reboot” overnight and actively function and protect itself from stress during the day. If sleep is disturbed, dysfunction of the glymphatic system is provoked, which can play a role in the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Having a healthy glymphatic system allows for the removal of used or damaged proteins, including beta-amyloid plaques associated with neurodegenerative conditions. Stress management is also important for this reason.