Why Stress Is Harmful to Your Body
Chronic stress has been linked to many serious health problems
Stress is an inevitable part of daily life. But if you don’t do anything to relieve stress, in the long run, your health is bound to suffer.
Sources of Stress
There are many sources of stress, or stressors, that you can encounter in any given day—and over the course of your lifetime. Stressors can be mental, emotional, or physical in nature.
It’s also important to recognize that any change that alters the status quo and demands that you adapt to it is a stressor. The change can be positive, such as a long-awaited vacation or the birth of a new baby, or negative, like the loss of a job or the death of a loved one.
Your Body’s Immediate Response to Stress
No matter what the source, your body responds to stressors through a process largely controlled by your adrenal glands.
The immediate response to a stressor is the infamous fight-or-flight response. Blood is shunted away from your skin and most internal organs, while your heart and lungs get increased blood. Your breathing rate increases, your liver dumps stored glucose into the bloodstream, and glucose and oxygen are rushed to your brain and muscles.
Your Body’s Response to Chronic Stress
The fight-or-flight response is a normal reaction and won’t cause your body any harm in the short term. Chronic stress, however, can seriously undermine your body’s resilience.
When your body remains in a constant state of fight-or-flight, your heart, blood vessels, and adrenals are weakened, and your digestive system can get out of whack. Impaired adrenal function leads to fatigue and low immune function, and acute infections and fatigue can become chronic.
Cancer, high blood pressure, and heart disease are also linked with chronic stress.
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For more than 30 years, Dr. Julian Whitaker has helped people regain their health with a combination of therapeutic lifestyle changes, targeted nutritional support, and other cutting-edge natural therapies. He is widely known for treating diabetes, but also routinely treats heart disease and other degenerative diseases. More About Dr. Whitaker
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