Is Worrying Ever Healthy?

Too much worry can be a bane for beauty-but a little bit can be a boon for health.
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worried woman

Dealing with Worry

You’re never going to get rid of every stressful thing in your day—and for the reasons we’ve shown you, you wouldn’t want to. But you do want to keep your nail biting in check (literally andfiguratively!), for beauty’s sake. Here are five ways to keep a healthy, beautiful balance:

Reevaluate. Maybe there are too many things on your to-do list, or you’re letting unrelated issues cloud your emotions. Worry is often about a feeling that you’re not in control. So take control! You might not always be able to change a situation, but you can change the way you think about it.

Keep a positive outlook. Tell yourself: I have the power to love my job, I can help make the world a better place, I am capable of handling tough tasks. You can do it! Thinking positive thoughts will not only help you manage what worries you, but it’s proven to make you look more beautiful.

Relax. Go to a quiet room and close your eyes while taking deep breaths. Listen to imagery tapes, music, meditate and most importantly, move! Some of us may prefer reading, while others would choose a power lift while listening to Metallica at the gym. Whatever it is, we recommend incorporating exercise and deep breathing as part of your stress reduction plan.

Read Eight Healthy and Savory Food Swaps

Get silly. Our favorite stress buster? Laughter! Switch on your favorite comedy while stretching and doing yoga in the living room or go for a walk and call up your funny best friend.

Reach for a stress-relieving snack. Munch away the effects of stress (inflammations, arterial aging, skin aging, etc.) with vitamin- and polyphenol-rich snack foods.

• Berries: Blackberries, strawberries, cranberries, raspberries and blueberries are jammed with antioxidants, which is why they’re great at countering the skin-damaging free radicals generated by stress.

• Guacamole: Avocados are loaded with B vitamins, which stress quickly depletes and your body needs in order to maintain nerves and brain cells. Scoop up the creamy goodness—which comes from healthy monounsaturated fats—with whole-grain baked chips or raw veggies. If you’re watching calories, dip instead of scoop: 2 tablespoons have about 55 calories.

• Nuts: Almost all nuts are good sources of vitamins B and E, plus selenium and zinc. Just an ounce—a small handful—will help replace those stress-depleted Bs (walnuts); give you a good dose of selenium and zinc (brazil nuts), which are also drained by high anxiety; and lower your blood pressure by helping your arteries relax (pistachios). They’re high in calories, so don’t overindulge.

• Oranges: People who take 1,000 milligrams of vitamin C before giving a speech have lower levels of cortisol and better-behaved blood pressure than those who don’t take it. So lean back, take a deep breath, and concentrate on peeling a big, juicy orange. The five-minute mindfulness break will steady your brain cells, and you’ll get a bunch of C as well.

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