Managing stress in our everyday lives is crucial in preserving our overall health. Aside from being a mood lifter, reduced stress can also boost our immune system as well as help us live a longer life. If you let stress take control of you, you are putting yourself at risk of acquiring a variety of illnesses. For additional information, here are some of the top risks related to stress.
Extended stress can lead to hypertension or chronic high blood pressure. When you are in a stressful situation, your body produces a surge of hormones that increase your blood pressure by making your heart pump faster and narrowing your vessels.
Studies have shown that prolonged stress increases the risk of developing depression. If you are unable to cope with stress, it can overwhelm you and wear you down, causing you to become moody and unproductive as well as develop sleep problems. Going about your normal day can be difficult if you are depressed and your relationships may suffer so be sure to manage stress to avoid depression symptoms.
7) Heart Disease
Although there is no evidence that stress can cause heart disease, medical researchers have found that it can worsen other risk factors like high blood pressure and high cholesterol. If you have an existing heart problem, prolonged stress may also bring on symptoms like angina. If you want to lower your risk for heart disease then learn how to manage your stress.
6) Weakened Immune System
The immune system is comprised of tissues, organs and cells that all work together to fight off infection and disease-causing pathogens in our body. Stress causes chronic inflammatory conditions that dysregulate the immune system, causing you to be vulnerable to infectious and autoimmune disease. High levels of stress can also lower the levels of protein in our bodies, which are critical to signaling other immune cells.
According to research, stress causes the body to release excess cortisol, the hormone responsible for managing fat storage and how energy is used in the body. Cortisol has also been found to increase appetite as well as trigger cravings for fatty and sugary foods.
4) Type 2 Diabetes
Research has has shown that stress hormones have a direct effect on our body’s glucose levels. The study states that people with type 2 diabetes generally experience an increase in their blood glucose levels. Furthermore, blood sugar also increases when the body is exposed to physical stress.
It has been found that in addition to unhealthy coping strategies like smoking and heavy drinking, stress can increase the risk of cancer. As mentioned, stress weakens the immune system and when the immune system is in jeopardy, our body is more susceptible to chronic inflammation and infection, which makes it less able to fight off diseases liok cancer.
Unsurprisingly, stressed people never sleep well. One side effect of stress is hyperarousal, which makes it really difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep. Aside from harming your health, sleep deprivation can also lead to poor judgement and delayed reaction times.
One common trigger of asthma is stress. High levels of stress can trigger physiological changes that may provoke an attack. Strong emotions and anxiety also trigger the release of chemicals like leukotrienes and histamine, which causes the airways to narrow. According to experts, reducing stress will also lessen the asthma attacks.