Feed Your Senses to Fight Fatigue
Author : Kyle Roderick    -   Subject : Health

    Feeling fried from too much work, family demands or cyberstress? Instead of reaching for another cup of coffee or calorie-laden treats, revitalize by nourishing your senses.

    For example, if you work in an office, keep some cologne at your desk to lift your spirits with a spritz. "Science has proven that scents stimulate areas deep in the brain and can cause changes in brain wave activity," says perfumer Sarah Horowitz of Creative Scentualization.

    "It's a good idea to stick with essential-oil based colognes that are free of synthetic chemicals," cautions Horowitz. "Many people are irritated by the synthetic ingredients that are in many popular colognes."

    "EEGs charting jasmine's effects on the brain have shown that the scent increases beta waves in the front of the brain, creating a more awake and alert state," says psychiatrist and neurologist Alan Hirsch, M.D., director of the Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation. Sniffing peppermint, spearmint and wintergreen essential oils has also been shown to promote more alert states. Hirsch recommends keeping some vials close by for an energy boost.

    Another way to rev up is by surrounding yourself with colorful artwork. "Gazing at one or more colors can quicken the senses and make you feel more complete," says Carole Coombs, co-owner of Green Valley Spa in St. George, Utah. Coombs says blue fosters a feeling of lightness, clarity and peace for most people.

    All the plastic we handle limits our sense of touch, notes Northbrook, Ill., art therapist Linda Lee Goldman. "Making art can help someone rediscover the pleasure of varied tactile sensations."

    Ceramics projects stimulate your hands during the creative process. Working with needlepoint also offers the sensory inputs of color, tactile hand craftsmanship and the gentle sound of thread sliding through canvas.

    Almost any music you find inspiring can elevate your energy level. Neurologist David Simon, M.D., medical director of the Chopra Center for Well Being in La Jolla, Calif., also recommends listening to recordings of natural environments to connect you to the wider web of life.

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