How Does Stress Affect The Body?

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Stress – only hearing that word can conjure up negative feelings and emotions! Stress itself isn’t always an un-healthy thing, after-all, with no ancestors responding to threats via their “fight or flight” instinct, we would not even be here. It’s chronic stress that’s the actual foe.

Chronic stress

In regards to learning requiring the usage of memory, chronic stress is a killer. It has devastating effects on both memory and learning with children being particularly affected. Stress triggers negative reactions in the immune system and leads to inflammation. Inflammation is related to a range of health issues and diseases – everything from diabetes to cancer, asthma and cardiovascular disease.

Past studies demonstrate that the hippo-campus (the brain’s memory center) encounters a 8 percent shrinkage – as the result of post-traumatic anxiety disorder. Chronic stress not only affects the way we feel and behave, but affects how we look! Many physiological processes are affected and some are actually turned off by the stress response.


Breathing and heart-rate growth, glucose is released (for instant energy) and adrenaline and cortisol (stress hormones) flooding the body. Lack of blood flow to the skin, immune system functions, digestion, reproduction and growth are put on hold. This lack of blood circulation to the skin influences how old we seem. But even worse than reduction of circulation, is how chronic stress affects the aging mind.

Toxins, poor diet, no exercise or social connections and repetitive routines all contribute to the reduction of brain cells as we age but chronic stress exacerbates the situation. It kills brain cells. Weight gain may result from chronic stress because digestion is dialed down through a stress response, causing many different digestive disorders. Constipation, nausea and cramping can all be the outcome.

What to do?

It’s very clear that if we want to age gracefully and enjoy stellar health, chronic stress has to be managed.

  • Increase social engagement. The mere act of sharing your everyday woes with others is a excellent way to bring your problems down to size and put them into perspective. Once you realize you’re not the only person to need to manage crazy situations and people you’ll feel a great deal better about your lot in life.
  • Do more physical activity. Once more, exercise comes to the rescue. Adding moderately intense physical activity to your life is a excellent way to lessen the amount of circulating cortisol in your body and lessen stress.
  • Watch reveals that make you laugh. It’s quite tricky to laugh and be stressed out at precisely the exact same time.
  • Get more sleep. Lack of sleep is a excellent way to enhance the small stresses in life and make them look excruciating. If you’re sleep deprived, start looking for ways to hit the pillow earlier. A terrific night of sleep can make a huge difference to your outlook on life.
  • Eat better. It might sound strange to hear nourishment mentioned in regards to stress reduction. But one of the consequences of high stress is that your body prioritizes the creation of cortisol within the synthesis of other important hormones your body needs to properly regulate itself.


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