Stress Up: Health Down

I would have loved to have the time to do this research myself, but fortunately it was nicely bundled up The USA Today in a piece by Marc Siegel who is an associate professor of medicine at New York University School of Medicine.  Here are a few of the facts from his article:

  • A survey by the American Psychological Association indicated that financial concerns “topped the list of stressors for at least 80% of those surveyed”.  More than half reported the most common symptoms being anger, fatigue, and an inability to sleep.  Close to half reported over-eating or eating poorly.
  • After the 1929 Wall Street crash, millions turned to drinking and smoking which led to heart attacks, strokes, bleeding ulcers, and clinical depression.
  • Research on people laid off from a plant in Pennsylvania over 17 years shows that they were 15% more likely to die of any cause.
  • In NY, calls to the Hopeline network for people with depression or suicidal thoughts increased 75% in the 11 months ending July (before the worse of the economic situation).
  • UnitedHealth Group reports that hospital admissions for psychiatric services are up 10% this year.
  • A 1% increase in unemployment is projected to cause as many as 47,000 more deaths over the next two years – 1,200 suicides and 26,000 additional heart attacks.
  • Cumulative stress causes depression, suicide, heart disease, stroke, predisposition to infection, and certain kinds of cancer.

He does offer a few pieces of advice that are always hard to focus on when you think about all the negatives:

  • Eat healthy food
  • Sleep right
  • Do yoga, meditate or exercise regularly
  • Touch in the form of massage, hugging, and kissing decreases stress hormones

No comments yet... Be the first to leave a reply!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: