Stress and Health
Everyone has felt the familiar sensation of stress at some point in their life. Whether it be due to finals, work, family, or other issues in our lives, it always happens. What many people don’t realize, though, is that stress takes an enormous toll on our bodies every single day.
Our bodies are physically equipped to handle stress in a specific way. This is called the ‘Fight or Flight’ response. What this means is that when we are put in a stressful situation, our bodies release specific hormones to either fight this stress off or run away. This is a primitive trait that has carried over to modern times. When we are stressed in everyday life at our jobs, at home, or even stuck in traffic, we are not in a place where we can physically use these stress hormones to run or fight. Over a long period of time, this can take a toll on our bodies.
Stress has been linked to many types of cancer, weight gain, loss of sleep, depression, and other chronic issues. So how do we solve this? There is no one answer, but physically, the best way to combat chronic stress is to exercise. This way, we are physically using up the stress hormones in our bodies, and returning ourselves to homeostasis. There are many other forms of stress management, such as meditation, humor, friendships, and breathing techniques, but exercise has proven to be the most effective of all of these. Even if it is just a small part of your day, it is essential for gaining the best quality of life that you possibly can.