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Stop Stressing & Shop Supplements


Stress and the holidays go together like mashed potatoes and gravy. Where there is one, you expect the other. Life, in general, is full of stressors. When the holidays come around, we are met with even more stressors: family obligations, travel, less-than-ideal weather, dwindling bank accounts, and the existential crisis that can accompany the realization that another year is coming to an end.

Managing stress during the holidays is paramount if you want to feel your best – and who wants to feel run down when reconnecting with loved ones over a decadent mug of hot cocoa? Regulating cortisol, the stress hormone, is your key to a balanced and relaxing holiday season. Exercise, adequate sleep, and proper nutrition all play key roles in improving your cortisol levels. With that being said, sometimes we need a little extra help – that’s where supplements come into play. Our Wellness Department is chock full of supplements, bath products, and herbs that can help you feel and look your best this season.

Not sure where to start? We’ve compiled a list of five products that are fantastic to incorporate during times of stress. As always, before taking any supplement, be sure to speak with your doctor or a healthcare professional.

GABA Calm® by Serene Science®

GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is an amino acid that acts as a neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. Think of a neurotransmitter as a tiny little messenger that sends signals from nerve cell to nerve cell. The kicker is that GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter; it slows down nerve transmission to the brain which, in turn, reduces the activity of overly-excited neurons that can cause anxiety and sleeplessness. Optimal GABA levels can aid in reducing anxiety, depression, and insomnia.**

Via the Serene Science® website, GABA Calm® “combines two of the main inhibitory neurotransmitters, GABA and glycine, with N-acetyl L-tyrosine, which is a precursor to the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine. In addition, taurine supports the calming effects of GABA.” If you’re prone to anxiety, especially around the holidays, give GABA a go.


Country Life Stress Shield®/Stress Shield Nighttime®

We went straight to the source for this supplement and spoke with Country’s Life’s Bethany Serrano about why their Stress Shield® products are ideal in times of stress. “The ingredients in this product help relax the body and thus deal with everyday stress,” she writes. “The key ingredients are Sensoril® and vitamin B-5 (pantethine/ pantothenic acid).  Sensoril®, a patented form of Ashwagandha a.k.a Indian Ginseng, helps to reduce fatigue, support energy levels, and support emotional well-being. Vitamin B-5 (pantethine/ pantothenic acid) is a key B-Vitamin that plays a role in your body’s response to stress. The B vitamins used in this formula are metabolically active to provide needed nutritional support to aid in the production of energy.  To round out the ingredients, passion flower extract, wild jujube extract, 5-HTP and ginger have been added to this product. Stress Shield® helps to bolster and balance the body’s ability to deal with stress.”**

Ashwagandha by Himalaya

If you’d rather skip combination supplements and go straight to the source, the herb Ashwagandha is a fantastic starting point. As mentioned, Ashwagandha helps reduce fatigue, increases energy levels, and aids in a healthy bodily response to stress.** For an added bonus, Himalaya’s Ashwagandha is additive-free, gluten-free, and is USDA-certified Organic.


Rhodiola Rosea by Gaia Herbs

Aside from being really fun to say, Rhodiola rosea has a multitude of benefits. Acting as an adaptogen compound – compounds that affect the physical and chemical effects of stress – Rhodiola is great for someone who is looking to manage stress, reduce fatigue, and, quite possibly, reduce stress-induced binge eating.** Further, it is “highly serotonergic” and if there’s one thing that can make you smile, it’s increased serotonin levels. What’s more, Gaia Herbs’ Rhodiola Rosea is ecologically-harvested and vegetarian-friendly.


Aura Cacia’s Relaxing Lavender Bubble Bath

Okay, so bubble bath isn’t technically a supplement or an herb, but lavender is. A relaxing soak in Aura Cacia’s Relaxing Lavender Bubble Bath before bed is a great way to unwind. In fact, when it comes to associating scents to physical responses, lavender is often the go-to for “relaxing” products. From candles and essential oils to bath products and teas, lavender is notorious for improving quality of sleep and reducing anxiety. Additionally, research shows that those who take a hot bath prior to bedtime experience a rapid decrease in body temperature post-bath which often results in a more relaxed state that aids in falling asleep faster and sleeping much more soundly.

Whatever your supplement needs happen to be, New Leaf’s Wellness Department has you covered. Beat stress this holiday season the natural way and ring in the new year feeling refreshed, relaxed, and ready for whatever comes your way.

** These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always speak with a healthcare provider before taking any supplements or medications.




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