What's a Toxic Relationship and Are You in One?

The mind-body connection, in all it’s interconnected glory, explains why the stress of toxic relationships is so detrimental to our overall wellness.

The mind-body connection, in all it’s interconnected glory, explains why the stress of toxic relationships is so detrimental to our overall wellness. When we are in a healthy relationship with another person, we feel supported, loved, respected, and cared for. We feel that no matter what challenges we face in life, we have a teammate, a best friend, and a lover to go through it all with. A healthy relationship has an incredibly positive impact on both our physical and emotional health. Strong relationships are shown to to strengthen immunity, increase lifespan, and offer us a safe space to grow. 

 

“Bad relationships are like a bad investment. No matter how much you put into it you’ll never get anything out of it. Find someone that’s worth investing in.”

We all encounter toxic people, but not all will remain trapped within the unhealthy dynamic. The term “toxic relationship” probably makes you think of a narcissistic ex or a high-maintenance friend. But bullies, whose power comes from hijacking your emotions, exist everywhere- within families, social groups, the workplace, and out in the world. All too often, it is the sensitive, empathetic personality types that gets pulled into the drama. Most toxic relationships start off as whirlwinds of passion and excitement, and we use the memories of these early moments of lust and intense joy as a reason to stay when things start to take a turn toward the unhealthy side.

Here are some signs that may indicate you are in a toxic relationship.

  1. Possessiveness: When someone is jealous to a point where they try to control who you spend time with and what you do when you’re not with them.
  2. Isolation: When someone keeps you away from friends, family, or other people.
  3. You notice a significant change to your behavioural patters: Your performance at work is affected as the relationship is causing you distress or taking up all of your focus and energy. You feel more tired, unmotivated, and disinterested in life outside of your relationships.
  4. You experience fear around expressing your own feelings or opinions.
  5. You are repeatedly lied to and made to feel that you are being “crazy” when you question their actions. This is also known as gaslighting.
  6. You don’t feel safe to be yourself in your relationship so you begin to mold yourself into what you think your partner wants you to be.
  7. Belittling: When someone does and says things to make you feel bad about sometime you say, do, or your achievements. 
  8. Volatility: When someone has a really strong, unpredictable reaction that makes you feel scared, confused or intimidated.
  9. You find yourself trapped in repetitive negative cycles.
  10. You lie to your friends and family about the details of your relationship to protect your partner and their ‘integrity’.
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Pomegranate

Pomegranates contain two plant compounds with powerful medicinal properties; punicalagins which are extremely potent antioxidants found in the juice and punicic acid which contains a main fatty acid that can help protect against several steps in the heart disease process. They have shown to reduce inflammatory activity in the digestive tract, and they can block enzymes that are known to damage joints in people with osteoarthritis. The anti-bacterial and anti-fungal effects may also be protective against infections and inflammation in your mouth including, gingivitis, periodontitis, and denture stomatitis.

Winter Squash

Apples

Beets

Winter Squash

Winter squash has been shown to help steady the release of sugar inside of our digestive tract after being eaten, and to lessen our overall glycemic response to meals. The vivid orange flesh of many winter squash varieties is due to their amazing concentration of carotenoids. Among these carotenoids are beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and other carotenoids that can be converted into active forms of vitamin A and shown to have an abundant amount of antioxidant properties. Winter squash is also a great source of vitamin C, a healthy source of fibre and contain polysaccharides that help regulate and control blood sugar.

Apples

Beets

Carrots

Apples

Apples are a rich source of manganese, copper, vitamins A, E, B1, B2, and B6 along with polyphenols. To get the most out of your apple, leave the skin on – it contains half of the fiber and many of the polyphenols. They have been linked to a lower risk of heart disease because the contain soluble fiber – the kind that can help lower your blood cholesterol levels. Apples also contain pectin, a type of fiber that acts as a prebiotic, which means it feeds the good bacteria in your gut and helps the good bacteria turn into other helpful compounds that circulate back through the body.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower is high in fiber, which is important because it feeds the healthy bacteria in your gut that help reduce inflammation and promote digestive health. Consuming enough fiber may help prevent digestive conditions like constipation, diverticulitis and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It is a great source of antioxidants, particularly high in glucosinolates and isothiocyanates, two grounds of antioxidants that have been shown to slow the growth of cancer cells. Cauliflower is also high in choline, an essential nutrient that many people are deficient in and contains some of almost every vitamin and mineral that you need.

Beets

Beets are very low in cholesterol and saturated fat, they are a very good source of dietary fiber, folate, potassium and manganese, and they ae a good source of vitamin C, iron and magnesium. Beets are rich in nitrates (which is converted into nitric oxide by the body), which helps to relax and dilate the blood vessels, resulting in better circulation and a drop in blood pressure. The added oxygen flow in your blood doesn’t just go to your muscles, it goes to your brain too, which improves cognitive function. Beets contain fiber, with most of that being insoluble fiber which is a type of fiber that promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk, so it can benefit those who struggle with constipation. Last but not least, beets can help reduce the intensity of chronic inflammation because they contain the amino acid betaine, which is an anti-inflammatory.

Carrots

Cauliflower

Pomegranate

Carrots

Carrots are good for your eyes. This is probably the best-known carrot superpower. They’re rich in beta-carotene, a compound your body changes into vitamin A, which helps keep your eyes healthy. And beta-carotene helps protect your eyes from the sun and lowers your chance of cataracts and other eye problems. They can lower your risk of cancer. Antioxidants have been proven to fight off harmful free radicals in your body, and that can make you less likely to have cancer. The two main types of antioxidants in carrots are carotenoids and anthocyanins. Lastly, all those antioxidants are great for your heart, the potassium can help keep your blood pressure in check and they have fiber, which can help you stay at a healthy weight.

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