Everyone has stress in their life, whether it is related to work, family, relationships and finances. All may cause unwanted stress and anxiety which has immediate effect on the body. Not all stress has bad affect but chronic stress puts our health at risk.
Every feeling positive or negative affects some part of the body, create physiological changes. Skin, heart rate, digestion, joints, muscle energy levels, the hair on the head, and countless cells and systems you don’t even know about, change with every emotion. Nobody can separate the wellness from the emotions.
Stress is “any real or imagined threat, and the body’s response to it” by releasing stress hormones and increasing heart and breathing rate. Chronic stress includes irritability, anxiety, and depression.
How does stress affect Health?
Stress gives direct physiological effects on the heart and arteries. It rapidly activates the stress hormones viz. adrenaline and cortisol. Increase heart rate, blood pressure and breathing, gives a burst of energy.
1. High Blood Pressure: Anxiety and stress make the heart work harder. The body’s “fight or flight” response is triggered – increasing blood pressure, body tenses causing heart to beat faster. High blood pressure leads to coronary artery disease and hypertensive heart disease.
2. High Cholesterol Level: Stress releases fatty acids and glucose into the bloodstream. These can be converted into natural fat and cholesterol creating deposits that decrease blood flow.
3. Individuals start smoking, overeating, consuming caffeinated beverages, self-medicate with drugs or alcohol and lead a sedentary lifestyle which increases blood pressure and may damage artery walls..
4. Damage to Arteries: chronic stress causes direct aging of arteries which elevate blood pressure and heart disease.
5. Inevitable Signs of Aging: wrinkles, weak muscles, poor eyesight, and more.
6. Depression: Not being able to stop thinking about the worries and unable to sleep properly.
When the body is under the stress response, cortisol and insulin levels rise. These two hormones tend to track each other, and when cortisol is consistently elevated under a chronic low-level stress response, you may experience difficulty losing weight or building muscle.
Tips for Reducing Stress
• Keep positive and realistic attitude
• Start an exercise
• Consult Doctor for guidance from a trained therapist
• Spend more time with love one or friends
• Quite smoking, alcohol
These are the good ways to deal with the stress and enjoying life. Be careful not to confuse stress with anxiety. If you suffer from anxiety, speak with the doctor a treatment or management plan including whether you need medication. Figuring out how stress pushes buttons is an important step in dealing with it.