Monday, July 25, 2011

Makeover Monday: A Banquet Partaken in Anxiety

A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety.
Aesop

I suffer from anxiety. I'm a very anxious person, but for the most part I keep it under control. When I was a teen I had problems with tachycardia... basically my heart would go into overdrive and I would start to panic. This rarely happens anymore... my mind and my body have matured and I can prevent a full on panic attack. When I was in college the doctors told me that I'd probably outgrow it... I'm still not sure if they meant that I'd outgrow my flair for the dramatic... or if there was some physical component to my problem that would go away when I reached a certain age.

But the anxiety... the anxiety... remains, and it rears it's ugly head as often as I let it. When do I get anxious? After a stressful day maybe? Perhaps when I'm stuck in traffic? Maybe I get anxious when disaster strikes and I have to go into overdrive to solve some problem? Actually... no. I may have a little flutter of stress when these things happen... but my worst anxiety happens when I'm having fun. Yep that's right I get anxious during the party times: summer vacations, birthdays, holidays, etc. You know... the times when I'm suppose to be having a good time.

This weekend was the end of my husband's summer vacation and also the celebration of his 40th birthday. We planned a big party, grilled some meat, had chips and dip on hand, invited over our best buddies and drank a few cold ones. It was loads of fun. Throughout the planning of the party and the party itself I had a wonderful time. The next day, however, I was a mess of stress. Did I have a hangover? No not really. Sure I had a few beers... OK more than a few... but I didn't wake up to a morning of hugging porcelain. I didn't even have a headache. What I did have was anxiety. I start picking apart every experience... I obsess about tiny details. It is no fun at all.

So what do I do about it? How do I vanquish anxiety from my life? Do I just have to quit having fun? Absolutely not. I think I might have stumbled on the answer when I was looking for ideas for my Makeover Monday post. It is something that I've known all along: Diet, exercise, rest, and staying hydrated are the keys to feeling good. When you're off on a vacation or having a fun time at a party, however, the fruits and vegetables tend to get pushed aside while the empty margarita glasses pile up in front of you. That is part of the reason why the early college years were so anxiety filled and why now I only stress out when I'm having a blast. Can I still drink beer and eat nachos? Certainly... but I should follow those nachos and beer with a glass of water and a piece of fruit... or maybe some whole grain bread and hummus and a cold glass of juice.

You are what you eat... and when you put crap into your body you are going to feel like crap...that is unless you follow it with a little TLC. So here it the plan... the plan to makeover my vacation depleted body and soul. First of all I'm going to take a break from the alcohol and drink lots of water. Second I'm going to start doing yoga again. And finally, I also plan to get more rest and start a diet rich in foods that are suppose to help with anxiety. Check out this article on Livestrong for ideas.After reading the Livestrong article yesterday I made myself an Elvis Special, peanut butter and banana on whole grain bread (I skipped the whole frying it in butter part), and I felt loads better. Those complex carbohydrates and foods loaded with tryptophan sure hit the spot! And yes that is a photo of Elvis looking rather anxious next to his famous recipe for a PB and banana sandwich (It is from the cookbook Fit for a King).

Foods and Beverages to avoid:
caffeine
alcohol
sugar and processed foods
saturated fats
simple carbohydrates
fried foods

Foods and Beverages to eat:
fruit
vegetables
nuts
soy
whole grains
lean proteins
LOTS of water







Thanks for stopping by... I'd love to read your comments...

Link up and let me read about your makeover ideas or tips... and be sure to stop by the Zany Housewife.

2 comments:

  1. I can see myself in this one! I find sniffing aromatherapy oils helps too. It's kind of weird but the stimulating ones like lemon and peppermint make me feel less stressed. They used to joke at my old job, "It's a bad day, Marie has the peppermint out."

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  2. You made a really good point about the water. I drink it ALLLLL the time....except for when it goes by the wayside and snacks become more of the norm. I also had to make the connection that green tea, though a "superfood", caused more anxiety due to it's caffeine. And yoga is almost ALWAYS good!!

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