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Hack the stress protocol - easy fixes and convincing data?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 27, 2012 at 3:04 PM

My girlfriend started working about 14 hours a day a few months ago. There is a lot of high stress responsibility on her at work. We live in separate cities so there's a fair amount of alternating weekend travel. Not 100% paleo but close most of the time, based off of some things I've suggested here and there.

About her:
Mid-twenties
Female
5'1"
~100 lbs
6-7hrs of sleep max during the week
Starting to breakout with some acne
Starting to carry some mid section fat
Breakfast is a smoothie - milk, berries, banana, whey protein
Snacks are fruit or nuts
Lunch is often catered or at less than optimal restaurants due to the nature of the job - she does her best but its usually sandwiches, chips, and crap like that
Dinner - Usually too tired to prepare optimal meals on a consistent basis, but does her best
Sleeps in a room with a fair amount of light, but usually has no problem passing out and staying out
Workouts come in bursts with periods of a few weeks in between
She takes Carlson's liquid fish oil, Vit D in the morning, Mg in the evening, B12 complex on occasion, doesn't drink any coffee

She is stressed and tired a lot. The job isn't going to change anytime soon. She likes "fresh" food so crock pot meals are hard to sell. She doesn't like eggs or lots of meat (I suspect a digestive issue or hypochloridia). She goes for fruit and quick grabs like that.

Is the following a good starting point to help her? If so, do you know of studies or good information backing up these decisions? She's open to new things but she is highly skeptical of things that sound weird and needs to see good evidence for it.

Plan:

Blackout the bedroom
Get a lamp in the bathroom (it's currently huge fluorescent lighting)
Add a digestive enzyme (like NOW SuperEnzyme) to help with meat/egg digestion
Figure out how to come up with a big ass breakfast or set of big ass breakfasts that are quick to grab and go and on the fresh/easily digestible side

Am I missing any easy wins? She's trying dairy free starting last week, but she's a cheese head and still has the whey protein (switched to Almond milk for smoothies).

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on April 27, 2012
at 06:47 PM

I was gonna say sex. Maybe hard to do long distance?

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3 Answers

3
870fdea50f2a9f1cd2890c8e22549300

(2056)

on April 27, 2012
at 04:25 PM

An eye mask might be easier in the short run than blacking out the bedroom.

Beware of catching up on sleep on the weekends by sleeping in. Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule will help her more in the long run.

Come up with grab and go dinners to eliminate the tiredness factor.

Meditation. Worth the effort. Being consistent is more important than duration. 10 minutes every day will produce a benefit.

EDIT: since meditation is sometimes regarded as a little "woo," here's some recent research: http://www.psyn-journal.com/article/S0925-4927%2810%2900288-X/abstract

1
01adafcb4dd4147c6af543f61eee60a8

on April 27, 2012
at 03:53 PM

More sex and im being serious,great stress reliever

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on April 27, 2012
at 06:47 PM

I was gonna say sex. Maybe hard to do long distance?

0
E68bdbd83e45fd5be130e393ace9c9a9

(2063)

on April 27, 2012
at 06:08 PM

I have seen friends who always had perfect skin start to break out after supplementing with whey, so I'd cut that.

Digestive enzymes will not help digest high-protein meals as much as betaine HCL supplements, in my experience (I have tried both).

I agree with Wayne that more sex would probably help with the stress :)

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