DRAIN IT OUT!

25/05/20

Are you also struggling with a physical condition which is not really top? Do you feel the need of taking back control of yourself after winter laziness and a forced sedentary lifestyle due to the health emergency that has hit us?

 

Don’t be fooled: reducing calories drastically and performing a little physical exercise is not the right way to go, not the only one at least. Sometimes, these shock therapies may prove to be counterproductive, because they cause hormonal balance disorders in your body, thus badly impacting on cortisol, the primary stress hormone.

Normally, those who start a diet are not doing it for some health reasons; they rather do it to recover their physical condition and lose weight quickly. They tend to eat less, to reduce calories, to increase the aerobic physical exercise, while spending hours and hours between the treadmill and some exhausting spinning lessons. And after the euphoria of the first successful results, the debacle!   Weight loss comes to a halt and, even worse, the fat and water retention get back in the game.

Frustration and discouragement lead then often to undertake some diets that are even more rigid and a physical activity much more intense, which is quite often without the supervision of a professional personal trainer, thus only resulting in a further worsening of the situation.

 

 

If you have experienced at least once such a situation, you must have probably wondered why! What are the reasons why our fitness attempts get stuck while triggering the opposite effect? Why does weight loss become more and more difficult even if we barely eat and we work out?

The answer is not easy, but several studies focused on cortisol production in women of any age undergoing slimming diets and can provide you with some useful indications: let’s them together!

THE ROLE OF CORTISOL

Cortisol is a hormone we all know already for its really bad reputation: the “bad” hormone, responsible for stress.  Actually, it has a crucial role in providing energy to our body when needed, typically while we are waking up, through the mobilization of our stocks of sugar, fat and proteins; at the same time, it deals with the reduction of all activities resulting in an energy consumption at a time when it is not necessary, especially during the first sleeping hours.  Sometimes, it may also be released suddenly to respond to a signal of danger, to then quickly get back to its background levels; even in this case, everything is under control!

 

 

When does the problem arise? When cortisol levels are chronically high: this leads to a major catabolic effect, combined with a subsequent fat-free mass reduction and an increase of fat mass together with high blood glucose.   And not only this: the increase of water retention due to the interaction between cortisol and sodium- and potassium-removal and absorption processes explains the reason why the above-mentioned fitness shock therapies do not work.

DRAIN YOUR BODY EFFECTIVELY BY WORKING ON CORTISOL

Now you have understood why shock therapies do not work and may disappoint your expectations.  That is the reason why, in a historic moment when real wellness is exactly what we all need, you must leave behind the old concept of “drainage” and learn how to really drain your body by lowering cortisol.  How? Here you may find some tips that you can immediately out into practice:

 

Improve the quality of your sleep with some breathing exercises

 

The sleep-wake balance is extremely important to keep cortisol at its background levels.  If you suffer from sleep disorders, try to avoid caffeine and alcohol in the evening and to sleep at least 7/8 hours without interruptions. This simple breathing exercise may help you:

  1. Put one hand on your stomach and one on the chest.
  2. Try to breath from your diaphragm (the hand on your stomach should go up and down when breathing, while your chest should stand still).
  3. Try to breathe making both your inspiration and expiration last 3 seconds.
  4. Allow your body to relax and you mind to drift off.

 

Correct your eating habits

 

Your eating habits can have a strong impact on your body cortisol level; you already know that foods can be split in good and bad foods.

The first category includes low glycaemic index foods, unsaturated fat (like olive oil, eggs, avocado, and soy), foods rich in fibre, plant proteins and fish oil rich in Omega 3 and 6. On the other hand, the second category includes simple sugars and refined carbohydrates, low-fibre foods, saturated fat (meat, milk and by-products like butter, lard, palm oil) and white bread, especially if packaged and with a long shelf life.

Try to choose as much as possible from the first group and integrate with other foods that are real cortisol allies: dark chocolate in limited quantities, green tea, fruit, and milk enzymes.

Drink a lot of water: this helps you maintain the right level of hydration in your body and promotes the right cortisol level.

 

Exercise in moderation

 

Intense exercising increase cortisol just after the workout itself and allows managing the effort your body is asked to make. If you are neither a professional sportsperson nor an athlete, do not exaggerate with sport: set a goal, achieve it without overdoing it, do it every day with perseverance and vary the exercises and the type of sport.

This enables your body to maintain its balance, thus refraining from turning workout into stress that could increase cortisol levels.

 

Leave negative thoughts behind

 

Negative and destructive thinking, as well as constant chatter increase stress levels and, therefore, cortisol production.

Learn how to become aware of your stress and work on your self-consciousness in order to identify all negative thoughts and signs of strain your body sends you.  Increasing your stress-awareness and identifying its triggering factors represent the first step to successfully face them. You can practice some Mindfulness exercises!

 

Treat yourself with a draining session in a Nuvola centre

 

You can contact a beauty and wellness centre using Nuvola Experience products and ask for a draining treatment designed for you; you could experience it on your own or with whoever you want.

You will be massaged with a light emulsion of Dead Sea salts or Epsom salts, mixed with a draining essential oil. You will float on Nuvola for 20 minutes, embraced by hot water at 36 degrees: this dry floating phase, combined with the osmotic effect of salt, will contribute to strengthen excess fluids drainage, while salt will smooth your skin making it soft and velvety.

At the end, you will be offered a draining massage on Soffio: delicate manoeuvres on the areas that are mostly impacted by water retention like thighs, knees and ankles, together with some drops of draining essential oil on the main lymphatic points.

And all of this accompanied by the typical hot&cold Kneipp approach, thanks to Battista, the trolley that will take care of heating and refrigerating the essential accessories for an unforgettable treatment!