5 tips to support feminine health in the anxious, busy, millennial woman.

The world loves to rag on millennials because we’re all “lazy and entitled”. The reality is a lot of us are busting our butt’s working two jobs to afford what someone our age could afford on one job, 30 years ago. New studies have shown that we are the most anxious generation, and that furthermore, when tasked with the same duties as men, women are more anxious than men.

This is a problem. Especially for your hormonal health, and especially if having a baby is on your radar. An overly-stressed out body does not want to prepare to child-bear, so it’s no wonder that currently 1 in 6 Canadian couples struggle with infertility.

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Work, bills, debt, home-owning, parenting, perfectionism, schooling, depression, lack of sleep, social media, (the list goes on) can leave you feeling like your drowning. It definitely does for me, and more often than it ever used to, which further compounds my hormonal issues and just plainly interferes with my life! I have found a few tools that I implement on a daily basis that have been helpful for me to adapt to this sort of lifestyle that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.

  1. Get up early.

    • Use these extra minutes of your day to do something that is going to be conducive to starting your day with a calm mind. Exercise, pray, meditate, eat a nourishing breakfast, and for the love of god stay off of your phone. Not only is the blue light from your phone bad for hormonal health, flipping through a world of perfect Insta-bitches or realizing how many work emails you have waiting for you at 8am is not conducive to starting your day off with a calm mind. If you have kids, or even if you don’t, this may be the only “me” time you get all day so make it yours. Your phone and your emails and your text messages will be waiting for you when the sun comes up.
  2. Log out & Sign off

    • Similar to point 1, but also put away your phone when you’re out and about. Especially when you’re driving! If you’re in transit, be it on the bus, in a car, walking… take time to notice your surroundings and be present. Fall is only here for a short period of time, so roll down your window and notice the way the air smells, notice the colourful leaves. Millennials (including myself) have this compulsion to pull out their phone and mindlessly flip through it the minute they have to wait in line for something. Instead, try chatting with your barista or grocery clerk. Engage with other humans!
  3. Keep blood sugar levels stable.

    • Just say no to the 3 PM sugary pick me up. Eat whole, balanced meals, and don’t skip meals. A small observational study by Aucoin & Bhardwaj concluded that when a girl, with generalized anxiety disorder, who ate a diet primarily of refined carbohydrates (think bread, sweets, pasta, etc.) opted for a more balanced diet that included fat, protein and fibre, that her anxiety symptoms significantly decreased. She then tried going back to her old carb-heavy diet and the anxiety flooded in, once again. Although this study is super small, anyone who has anxiety can probably attest to the fact that when they eat a more balanced, whole diet, they feel better.
  4. Decrease, if not completely eliminate, alcohol consumption.

    • Thanks to tracking my cycle, I know that there are certain times of the month where I will naturally feel more anxious than others. Drinking alcohol during this time throws gasoline on the fire for me. I feel 10x more anxious the next day. If your anxiety is related to hormone imbalance, you’re only going to worsen it by throwing alcohol at a liver that is struggling enough as it is just to process the hormones, never mind alcohol on top of that.
    • If being the only one who is not drinking in a group of people doesn’t seem like an option for you, well… as a child of two AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) parents, Im going to be bold here and say: you need to address this. ASAP. How much space alcohol is actually taking up in your life? If you’re feeling sober-curious, I love Steph Gaudreau’s podcast on  Alcochol and social pressure.
  5. Try a supplement.

    • The three most helpful supplements that I have a felt drastic difference in my anxiety with include:
      1. Ashwaghanda
        • Is an aryuvedic herb classified also as an adaptogen that helps lower cortisol levels, help reduce insomnia and depression and can help lower cholesterol. A few of my friends also tell me it increases your libido 😉 😉
        • Ive been using this brand for years. I like it because the company runs their own clinical trials, they’re Canadian, and it works.
      2. Magnesium supplementation
        • Aka “the chill pill”. If you only try one supplement, make it Magnesium. Magnesium is such an essential nutrient that most of us are deficient in, because even with the most whole, clean diet, the soil our food is grown and lives in these days is deficient itself.
        • The type of magnesium matters. It comes in multiple different forms and many of them are not well absorbed. I’d recommend Magnesium Glycinate or Bis-glycinate, and definitely not magnesium citrate. There are lots of good brands but I’m currently using this brand as it gives me the biggest bang for buck. I also really love magnesium baths – add 1 cup of Epsom salts to your bath, soak for as long as possible and just zen out.
      1. Phosphatidylserine
        • Is a phospholipid that helps carry messages between your brain cells. My memory and thought processes are much clearer when I take this, and I feel that it zaps cortisol and anxiety almost instantly.
        • Again, watch the brand. I like this brand because the PS is derived from sunflower letchin, not soy.

So, how about you? If you’re a highly anxious person, what seems to work for you? I love hearing other peoples tried and true’s for mental well being!

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