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How Stress Damages Your Health, Part 1 of 2

5 min read time

          We know that chronic stress causes high blood pressure and is dangerous to our health.

          Doctors have warned us for decades that if we want to avoid heart disease and live a long, healthy life, we must find ways to reduce stress.



“The Number 1 Killer in America”


          In the past two decades, researchers have discovered that the impact of chronic stress is far worse than originally thought.

          In fact, stress is linked to 70% of modern diseases in the Western world, and most of the major causes of death in this country.1 Recently, the American Psychological Association reported that stress is linked to the six leading causes of death in the US.(2)  These are:

  1. Coronary heart disease
  2. Cancer
  3. Respiratory diseases
  4. Accidents
  5. Cirrhosis of the liver
  6. Suicide

          In addition to the above, long-term chronic stress has been linked to high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, strokes, diabetes, obesity, neurological disease,  rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, allergies, Alzheimers, Parkinsons (6) and virtually every degenerative disease and autoimmune condition. Not to mention mental serious health issues such as depression and  anxiety(6), *


          Experts agree that some stress is good - usually the kind that our body recovers from quickly. But in today’s fast-paced world, we are bombarded by a
continual overload of stressors that have now become the new, dysfunctional normal. And it's this long-term stress that can cause some serious health issues.


The Types of Stress



          While it may seem stress is totally random, we can better understand how our body responds to stress by looking at the different types of stress.

Acute Stress
          Acute stress is short term and temporary. Examples of acute stress include:

  • being stuck in heavy traffic when you’re running late
  • having an argument with a family member or co-worker
  • hearing bad news

          Fortunately, acute stress passes quickly for most people once the situation that caused it has passed or been resolved.

Chronic Stress
          Chronic stress is long-term, on-going stress usually caused by feeling constantly under mental, psychological or emotional pressure in your life.

          These pressures may be related to your job, relationships, financial situation, ongoing health problems or a host of other things.

          People who feel overwhelmed and so busy they can never catch up with everything they have to do are often victims of chronic stress.

Other Chronic Stressors
          There are actually many types of stressors that cause chronic stress beyond just the mental and emotional stressors (family, job pressures, finances, etc.) most of us are familiar with.

          Physical stressors put stress on your body and include: lack of sleep, over-exertion, a poor or nutrient-deficient diet, excessive heat or cold, and on-going chronic health issues.

          Anything that taxes the body physically and the immune system is a physical stressor.

          Another type of chronic stressors most people aren’t aware of are chemical and environmental stressors caused by toxins in our food, drinks, medications, everyday cleaning or personal products, even the air we breathe and the water we drink.
a smoggy downtown city causing chronic stress


          Unfortunately, chemical and environmental stressors are virtually unavoidable for most people in our modern world.

          All the more reason we need a safe, proven way that can help us deal with all types of chronic stress.


How Your Body Reacts to Stress



          You’ve probably heard of the “fight-or-flight” response.

          Animals experience it. Humans experience it.

          This is how your body responds to a threat -- whether that threat is real or imagined.

          When fight-or-flight is triggered, your body immediately goes into action by releasing a flood of hormones from the adrenal glands including adrenaline and the all-important stress hormone, cortisol.

          And this is where stress can be very harmful.



Too Much of the Stress Hormone Cortisol Can Be Deadly



          Cortisol continually circulating in your bloodstream is damaging to your immune system. Your body gets to the place where it’s no longer able to produce enough immune cells to fight off viruses, bacteria and other outside invaders. (7)

          This leads to colds, flu, infections of all types -- and much worse because
excess cortisol disrupts almost all your normal body processes (including all 50 of your body’s hormones) and leads to the stress-related deadly diseases listed above.


Nature’s Solution to Reducing Chronic Stress and Balancing Cortisol


          It may surprise you to know there is a natural solution to stress that has been used successfully for thousands of years.

          It’s a safe and simple way to calm our bodies and keep our stress (and all-important cortisol levels) under control regardless of what we’re experiencing in our lives.

          We call them “anti-stress herbs,” and although they have been used effectively for millennia, few people in the Western world have ever heard of them.

          The good news is that this powerful family of anti-stress herbs can specifically address the root causes of many of our modern health problems.

          In part 2 of this series on protecting your health from the dangers of stress, we will look closer at the specific herbs in this family and how they can not only guard your health from the damage caused by stress, but increase your energy, vitality, and stamina. In addition, these amazing herbs have remarkable anti-aging properties! Stay tuned!


About Lean Factor
Lean Factor is a leading provider of premium wellness products that promote vibrant health and longevity. Many of Lean Factor's unique products contain adaptogenic herbs promoting immunity, stress-reduction, and vitality. For more information, visit www.LeanFactor.com or call 800-818-7115.

References

  1. National Institute of Health, "Life, Stress and Illness," ncbi.nlm.nih.gov website, "https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3341916/," accessed August 19, 2020.
  2. Miami Herald, “Chronic stress is linked to the six leading causes of death,” “https://www.miamiherald.com/living/article1961770.html,” August 21, 2020.
  3. Current Topics in Neutraceutical Research, "The Effect of Acute Administration of 400mg of Panax Ginseng on Cognitive Performance and Mood in Healthy Young Volunteers," nchpjournals.com website, https://www.nchpjournals.com/admin/uploads/article_882.pdf,"accessed August 19, 2020.
  4. National Institute of Health, "A Prospective, Randomized Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of Safety and Efficacy of a High-Concentration Full-Spectrum Extract of Ashwagandha Root in Reducing Stress and Anxiety in Adults," ncbi.nlm.nih.gov website, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3573577/," accessed August 19, 2020.
  5. Green Med Info, "Rhodiola is cardioprotective and has anti-stress activity," GreenMedInfo.com website, "https://www.greenmedinfo.com/article/rhodiola-cardioprotective-and-has-anti-stress-activity," accessed August 19, 2020.
  6. A. Panossian and G. Wikman, “Pharmacology of Schisandra Chinensis Bail: An overview of Russian research and uses in medicine,” Journal of Ethnopharmacology 118(2) (2008): 183–212.
  7. Stress, Inflammation, Immunity: https://www.rn.com/featured-stories/stress-inflammation-immunity/
Do You Have Any of the Symptoms of Stress?
  • Physical symptoms:
  • Insomnia & sleep issues
  • Digestive problems
  • Low energy
  • Headaches
  • Tense muscles
  • Weight problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Frequent colds or flu
  • Nervousness
  • Skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis
Cognitive symptoms:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Brain fog & inability to focus
  • Forgetfulness
  • Constant worrying
Behavioral symptoms:
  • Eating more or less than usual
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Withdrawing from others
  • Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
  • Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
  • Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing)

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Excerpt

Do You Have Any of the Symptoms of Stress?
  • Physical symptoms:
  • Insomnia & sleep issues
  • Digestive problems
  • Low energy
  • Headaches
  • Tense muscles
  • Weight problems
  • High blood pressure
  • Chest pain
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Frequent colds or flu
  • Nervousness
  • Skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis
Cognitive symptoms:
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Brain fog & inability to focus
  • Forgetfulness
  • Constant worrying
Behavioral symptoms:
  • Eating more or less than usual
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Withdrawing from others
  • Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
  • Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
  • Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing)
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