What Stress Does to Your Body
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Knowing What Stress Does to Your Body can be vital to maintaining good health. After all, motivation is important.
We hear a lot about the effects of stress these days. It definitely makes you wonder about how we have decided to build up our society and live our lives. Most families are running all out from the moment their eyes open until they hit their beds – and even then most bring different types of electrical devices to their bedrooms and beds that keep their brains actively “charged” late into the night.
We know this. We know that stress is not good because we can feel it!
Some well known symptoms of stress:
- feeling emotional
- tension in chest or shoulders
- grinding of teeth
- heart palpitations
- chest pain
- upset stomach
- intestinal flow stopping or going too fast.
- And many, many more…
We don’t like it…..but we often continue with the status quo. Perhaps you don’t realize what stress does to your body.
What Stress Does to Your Body
Stress effects multiple systems of our bodies: cardiovascular, nervous, gastrointestinal, etc.
Stress puts our nervous system into a long term “fight or flight” response. Everything is on high alert. You may think, “”Ok, so what?” Yet, staying for more than a few minutes in this state can cause serious repercussions.
Causes blood pressure to rise. High blood pressure, stress on the heart = higher risk of heart attack. And yes, even people in their thirties are having heart attacks these days.
Signals the adrenals to release cortisol and epinephrine. A study by Wake Forest University suggests strongly that these “fight or flight” hormones can encourage cancer cell growth.
Signals the liver to release more glucose into the body. It is common knowledge in conventional and natural circles that high glucose levels feed cancer cells. We all have cancer cells, but most of us have immune systems able to deal with those cells. Excess glucose not only makes them stronger, but our white blood cells are overrun with too much glucose and instead of receptors filling with vitamin c, they are filled with glucose and our immune system is compromised by 75% percent!!!! 1, 2, 3
A motivation to avoid sugar as much as to avoid stress. Imagine the effects of eating high amounts of sugar while stressed!
Causes Inflammation – Stronger heart beats caused by stress can lead to larger blood flow being directed to your muscles and heart. This push for more blood to be delivered can cause inflammation. Doctors are finding that internal inflammation causes a whole host of problems, one of those being a higher risk of a heart attack and stroke.
Can shrink the brain. 4
Causes premature aging of the cells. 5
Inhibits Immune System. 6 Basically, you produce epinephrine and cortisol so much that your body shuts down its response to it. Inflammation is a mechanism to help kill viruses, etc. You stop turning off that inflammation response and thus are internally inflamed perpetually….NOT good!
4 Ways to Reduce Stress (no herbs, medication, or oils needed)
These 4 steps are things everyone should be examining on an ongoing basis. You don’t need to buy anything. Everyone can and should, if at all possible, complete these if they are feeling stressed.
1. Get Organized
Maybe this is all you need. Write things down, buy supplies, get other people working with you if you need to, delegate, and you feel great! It is definitely something that helps me.
This is HUGE! A big symptom of high stress is when everything becomes high priority. I’ve been here before. I’ll literally walk in circles because I’m trying to do everything at once and nothing holds priority over another. In my mind everything has to get done. This is when you need to stop and prioritize. Do what must be done first, realize what can be done another day.
3. Cut Back on Commitments
Saying no is hard for some of us. I, apparently, think I’m super woman and can do anything and everything. That is NOT the case! 🙂
It’s easy to cut out exercise when we are under stress because “We just have too much to do.” But exercise BURNS CORTISOL!! Cortisol is known to cause inflammation and eventually encourage cancer cell growth. Not only does exercise help eliminate cortisol, it also can help regulate your systems, working and relaxing muscles, causing you to be able to think more clearly and work faster than if you didn’t take the time to work up a sweat. The endorphin hormones are a big pick me up as well so don’t skip exercise when you are stressed!
- 20 Stress Relieving Herbs and Teas
- Essential Oils to help reduce stress
Join us in the Simplify Your Life Series. We already discussed taking the stress out of our daily lives by:
- Brainstorming where we need to cut the stress
- Organizing the Kitchen
- Creating a Meal Plan (whether you do this weekly, biweekly, or monthly)
- 15 Simple and Healthy Breakfast Ideas
Shared on some of these great blogs.