August 2014

Stress and Heart Disease

Stress and Heart Disease
 

  • One of every seven American males has or will have a heart attack or disabling heart disease before the age of 60.
  • Two of five adults will have high blood pressure.
  • Stress releases fatty acids and glucose into the bloodstream. These can be converted into natural fat and cholesterol and deposited on arterial walls (arteriosclerosis). These deposits create resistance to the blood flow through the arteries, and contribute to high blood pressure.
  • Chronic stress increases blood pressure and cholesterol and, therefore, leads to chronic hypertension.
  • Stress releases hormones which can increase susceptibility to blood clotting.
  • Stress increases the likelihood of smoking and using caffeinated foods and beverages. Smoking cigarettes raises a person's heart rate an average of 14 beats per minute. This effect, when combined with stress, can cause the heart rate to increase as much as 38 beats a minute. The effects of caffeine are similar to cigarettes. (Research from the U. of Maryland.)
  • In the chronically stressed individual the repair and healing systems of the body are compromised and this leads to increased damage and slower repair of injuries to the heart and body.
  • Along with cardiovascular problems, stress can also cause muscular, respiratory, and skin problems, sexual problems, gastrointestinal and eating disorders, and chemical dependence, we refer to these conditions as Stress-Related Disorders.
  • Stress-related Disorders can lead to illness, disease, chronic disease and even death.
  • Stress increases your risk of heart attack and death from heart disease.
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    It is often very difficult for the average individual to identify how much stress he or she has and to what degree it is affecting their body. If you believe that you are stress free yet you have unexplained illnesses or vague symptoms you may have hidden stress. If you know that you have stress you should immediately do something about it.

    If you do not know what to do then talk to us.