Stress is a very broad concept and has many connotations. Greek philosopher Hippocrates was one of the first to attempt to define the word stress in terms of “balance. In the early 20th century, Hans Seyle proposed the general adaptation syndrome which provided the first comprehensive biological theory of stress.
Within the modern physiological context, internal balance as described by Hippocrates is recognized as homeostasis. The definition of stress is a state of threatened balance, equilibrium, or harmony. Threats to homeostasis are called “stressors”.
What Happens to Your Body When You’re Stressed?
Stress also becomes the physiological responses an individual undergoes while adjusting to adverse or continuous changes in the environment. It is known that stressors of various types, be they psychological or physical, can alter the physiological levels of certain hormones, immune cells, and networks of biochemicals that respond to stress.
These alterations send information to the central nervous system to take necessary action, which then sends messages to the appropriate organs, tissues and cells to respond. These messages can either activate or suppress the immune system as needed, and failure to compensate for this by the body can lead to serious health-related problems.
In one study, 276 volunteers completed a life stressor interview and psychological questionnaire. The volunteers were inoculated with common cold viruses and monitored for the onset of disease.
The study showed that stressful life events for a short period of time (less than one month long) did not increase the risk of developing colds. However, severe chronic stressors (one month or longer), resulted in a substantial increase in the risk of getting sick. Under- or unemployment and family difficulties also contributed to an increased risk of disease.
Psychological stress is known to affect immune function and predict susceptibility to infectious disease. However, not all individuals who are stressed develop disease. Further investigation has revealed that individuals vary in the magnitude of their immune responses to stress. Individual differences in immune reactivity provide a vulnerability factor in mediating relationships between stress and disease.
What Can Cause Stress?
Most people in modern society experience stress, regardless of profession or family situation. It is important to identify stressors to better deal with the side effects and find effective coping mechanisms. It is also of importance to listen to your body and be coherent to stress symptoms, especially if you are in one of the following, potentially stressful, situations:
- Being the primary caretaker of an elderly, sick or handicapped person.
- One of the common models of chronic, long-term psychological stress is that of caregivers of a family member with dementia.
- Financial insecurities. Under-employment or unemployment.
- Enduring interpersonal difficulties with family or friends.
- Changing locations, moving to a new home.
- Death of a loved one.
6 Ways to Manage Stress
Experience stress could be incredibly consuming and significantly reduce the quality of life. Luckily, there are ways to cope with the stress symptoms and below are six simple ways to manage your stress.
- Find time daily to relax and do something you enjoy.
- Yoga, exercise, sports, music and meditation have been shown to lower stress.
- Have a good support group of family and friends who listen and encourage your efforts.
- Do not take things personally when someone is critical or negative.
- Stay positive — speak kind words, think positive thoughts and visualize good experiences.
- Eat well-balanced, scheduled meals so the body and brain have the energy to function.
How to Boost Your Health To Combat Stress
Stress negatively affects a person’s blood pressure and blood flow, which can lead to a reduced quality of life. Therefore, a healthy diet can help you combat stress and reduce the symptoms. Below are three supplements that can help when combined with a healthy and balanced diet.
LAMININE has been shown in a clinical trial to lower the stress hormone cortisol. This slows down a cascade of events that continue to bombard the body with other inflammatory and/or stimulating compounds that may increase anxiety.
Many people consuming one to two capsules per day of Laminine report better sleep, more positive moods, less anxiety and overall well-being. Some people report an experience of calmness. Since emotions can run high when certain adverse events happen, an overall calmness can help cope with stress.
IMMUNE+++ contains an effective amount of vitamin C, mushroom extracts and powerful antioxidants that provide immune support when the stressors in your life accelerate. Take IMMUNE+++ regularly to have its benefits in place before some crisis hits.
Modern research in probiotic biology has shown that beneficial microbes, when inhabiting the gut, help make neuro- metabolites that support good mood. The microbiota affects the neurological, endocrine and immune systems, which make up the Neuro-Immuno-Endocrine Super System.
DIGESTIVE+++ supports the proper breakdown of foods to provide much-needed energy, especially when you are undergoing stressful times—for example, when starting kids back to school, adjusting your own work schedule or juggling responsibilities.