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Are you “stressed out”? Are you suffering from hypertension? If you have both these symptoms together, they could be related.
We are being told to watch our salt intake; eat less saturated fats; check for hydrogenated oils, and the list goes on and on. Focusing too much on what we eat will only cause us to worry and get “stressed out” on top of all the other daily troubles that plague us, is it not? What do you think?
A recent study about stress effects on blood pressure revealed the effects of September 11 on not only the victim`s families but also on people living in other parts of the world. It demonstrated that stress and trauma can have a serious effect on blood pressure, and are we not living in such critical times?
This concept of high blood pressure related stress isn’t new. We have heard about how bad it is for as long as I can remember. Take for instance, in 1958, two-thirds of the deer population died on James Island in the Chesapeake Bay over two years. You may be wondering what deer have to do with this subject?
In the Doomsday Book, British ecologist Gordon Taylor said that the adrenal glands of the deer were much enlarged, and the cell structure confirmed the idea that their deaths were stress related. He further explained that the adrenals become enlarged in response to continued stressful conditions, and predicted a similar situation for humans as they become more pressurized from overpopulated conditions, and isn’t it just so? The results are beginning to show on a scale of epidemic proportions, and that is no exaggeration. There are blood pressure screenings available everywhere.
Current research reflects similar findings that not only does adrenalin and corticosterone increase with repeated stress, causing high blood pressure and enlarged adrenalin glands, but can also lead to heart disease, stroke and other diseases. Patients who have suffered heart attacks have been recorded as having worked more hours and experienced more home and financial stress.
Not only can it be accounted for causing some heart conditions, but other diseases sometimes can also be traced back to stress, as Psychiatrist, Dr. Eberhard H. Uhlenhuth, at the University of Chicago revealed in a health forum lecture. He made it clear that growing evidence indicated it as a major player in the cause of most of man’s illnesses, from the common cold to heart attacks. He said, “While there are other factors involved in causing illness, it is quite clear that stress plays a triggering role.” We need to “take to heart” the evidence.
A Practical Suggestion
Considering the conclusiveness of this evidence what can we learn that we can use practically?
The fight and flight response is preparing us for action, so it seems reasonable to follow up with some sort of physical counter-reaction. This is where exercise will be most beneficial.
Jogging or some other activity that causes exertion will burn off the extra energy that the rise in blood sugar is providing for. Your adrenalin will stabilize, and your artery muscles relax and dilate. [Ref: A]
Stress Management for Health.com is an interesting website that gives a wide range of illnesses that stress can trigger or aggravate, including cardiovascular problems.
[Ref: A] High Blood Pressure – Diet Against It by Dr. James Scala pgs. 82-94