How Stress Affects Your Health

A little stress that pushes you to a good outcome can actually be healthy, but chronic stress can have negative impacts on every system in your body. Emotional stress can trigger inflammation that can impact your organ function, your joints and your spine. In addition, it can lessen your ability to cope with ordinary events. Here are some ways that stress can alter your overall well-being.

Emotional Impacts

Stress can make you edgy and wipe out your patience. Thus, a stressful day at the office may mean that you snap at your spouse or yell at the dog when you get home. To understand how stress can overwhelm your emotional flexibility, remember that stress can engulf you and make you feel as though you’re drowning. When you’re drowning, you have no room for empathy, compassion or patience.

Physical Effects

Long-term emotional stress may mean that your body thinks your health is in danger. It’s important to note that it wasn’t long ago in human history that food shortages were a serious risk and could be deadly. It’s not surprising that emotional stress and correspondingly higher levels of cortisol cause weight gain. The developed world no longer has to worry about food shortages. In fact, many of us now need fat burners to help shed the weight our bodies hang onto for dear life. Too much stress can affect attempts at weight loss. The combination of stress, cortisol, and easy access to comfort foods that are high in carbohydrates but low in nutrition make it very hard to successfully sustain weight loss. When your brain is very stressed, the act of making a healthy food choice becomes an extra step. Cutting up an apple or fixing a plate of veggies for a snack requires tools and time. Donuts are a much handier way of feeding your stress.

Stress and Illness

Long-term high levels of stress can have a terrible impact on the ability of your body to fight off illness. In addition to being more susceptible to infections, you may find that you suffer more spinal pain when you’re under large amounts of negative stress. Stress can also lead to high blood pressure, which contributes to a whole host of negative health experiences, especially as we get older. High levels of stress over long periods of time can also cause inflammation throughout the body. Conditions from arthritis to gastric distress can be made much worse by stress.

There are ways to ease the stress in your life. Simple exercises like taking a walk will get your body moving and free up your mind to problem-solve. Meditation before bed can calm your anxieties and may even help you think more clearly. You can’t avoid stress entirely in your life but you can learn how to deal with it better so your life doesn’t come to a painful halt.

To learn how stress can also impact your skin, read on, here!


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