Mitigating the Tolls of Stress on Your Body

Effects of Stress

There are many ways to mitigate the physical and mental effects of stress on the body.

Between work, family, and relationships, it can be easy to let stress get the best of you. Many people turn to faith or their spiritual guide to help them through difficult times, but it’s important to remember the steps you can take on your own to make sure the stress you’re feeling at work or at home isn’t taking a toll on your body.

Many studies have shown that stress is not only, well, stressful, but can actually have serious physical effects on your body if not manages correctly.  A recent Fox News Health blog post talks about some of the ways you can take care of your body in times of stress.  You can check out the full article here.

A recently concluded study that followed 239 women over the course of a year found that healthy living practices such as eating well, exercising, and getting the proper amount of sleep can help the detrimental effects of stress on the cellular level.

Telomeres, which the article puts into laymans terms as “the protective caps at the end of chromosomes” can be measured for length.  Every time a cell divides, the telomeres shorten slightly which researchers believe is one of the primary causes of aging.  Stressful events like divorce or loss of a job led to a higher rate of telomere shortening, but healthy living was shown to slow the rate of telomere shortening and in theory, slow the aging process somewhat.

Women with similar stress levels but a less healthy lifestyle showed signs of greater reduction in telomere length and more advanced aging tied directly to stress.

So what does this mean for your day-to-day life? It means that staying disciplined even during times of great stress can lead to better health and slower rates of aging.

That can be easier said than done so check out part 2 where we discuss some methods for making this a reality.