The Scoop on Stress.

Written by Deborah Caruana RN, MES, CPT

Stress is defined as a response by your body to any demand made upon it and a 'demand' means a change. Did you know different stress levels have names? For example “Neutral” stress isrepparttar amount of work it takes to maintain normal body function. If we give stress a scale of 1- 10 where Neutral stress would be 1. Lets take a look at Success and what it implies. Believe it or not success is a stressor, called “Eustress”, which stems fromrepparttar 135839 word euphoria. We can give eustress a quantitative number like 5 because it is a high intensity feeling and brings many ramifications and changes. Now we'll take a brief peak at failure. Failure means challenge, or worst of all defeat. So failure can generate what is called “Distress”, which, we’ll give a number of 5 because it’s implications for change are compound and also intense. I’m relinquishingrepparttar 135840 good and bad judgements on stressors and trying to quantify them based onrepparttar 135841 change from homeostasis-the norm perspective. If our highest stress level is 10 this is when we experience all ofrepparttar 135842 classic “fight and flight” signs of our body preparing for action. Hormones, like adrenaline, surge. 6 Your heartbeat and blood pressure soar. Your palms sweat. 7 Your short of breath. Your hair stands on end. 8 You’ve got a flock of geese flapping in your belly. Your blood sugar rises and your muscles tense. 9 Your mind is focused on fighting or flighting. If you get to 10 you’ll probably mess your knickers because your system has gone berserk from over stimulation and your body will surrender. Thoughrepparttar 135843 odors may stop your adversary from taking that first bite. These effects, up to 9.9 unchanged for thousands of years, helped prehistoric humans survive! The problem here is thatrepparttar 135844 physical and emotional manifestations ofrepparttar 135845 stress response are designed to dissipate whenrepparttar 135846 immediate physical threat is over. But when they don't, over time, these over used hormones cause heart disease, hypertension, suppressed immunity, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome and even depression. The greatest defense against these physical manifestations is to realize they are caused by your hard wired prehistoric emotions. For instance, if you're late for work and you've just missedrepparttar 135847 last subway. What do you do? You can either panic, or you can just acceptrepparttar 135848 situation. Relax, take a deep breath and wait forrepparttar 135849 next one. If you can change a situation, do it, if you can't, then you adapt. Understanding stress and its effects can help you use it to your own advantage, and turn potential "stressors" into positive challenges. Something I have always believed and now seems to be coming to light with scientific evidence isrepparttar 135850 fact that stress can actually be good for you! The Latest Study on Stress This is a study done recently with mice in a stressful situation. Whatrepparttar 135851 researchers did was they take a bunch of mice that were bullied repeatedly by a nasty mouse for a couple of hours for six consecutive days. Atrepparttar 135852 end of that periodrepparttar 135853 researchers infectedrepparttar 135854 picked on mice with a strain of influenza that also infects humans. Other mice, not subjected torepparttar 135855 bullying, were also infected sorepparttar 135856 scientists could measurerepparttar 135857 effects ofrepparttar 135858 stress. The bullied mice were actually better able to ward offrepparttar 135859 virus thanrepparttar 135860 ones that had not had to deal with an aggressive foe. Sorepparttar 135861 scientists changedrepparttar 135862 name ofrepparttar 135863 stress test to “repeated defeat.". By whatever name,repparttar 135864 stress apparently improvedrepparttar 135865 memory ofrepparttar 135866 special "T cells," that runrepparttar 135867 immune system. Low levels of stress produce hormones that help us meet various challenges, so a little of a bad thing can be good. Of course, there's still some question about whether humans will reactrepparttar 135868 same as mice, butrepparttar 135869 mouse immune response is comparable to that ofrepparttar 135870 humans and that's why they choserepparttar 135871 mice.

Bye Bye Holidays

Written by Deborah Caruana RN, MES, CPT

Hoping everyone had a fun, fantastic, exciting and relaxing melange of Holiday eventfulness or lack thereof. Whatever it was that you did, that it most suited your moods and needs. Sincerepparttar holidays were shortened into one compact week, Saturday torepparttar 135838 next weeks Sunday, there was no time to languish. You had to seize that holiday time with both hands and feet to getrepparttar 135839 most out of it. Holidays for me mean visiting family, since they live in another country (Canada) this is only a biannual event and therefore more meaningful. I have to inhale everyone to their essence and then painfully let go. Because it's a large family it takes concentration and a lot of energy, especially because there are a growing number of children and I certainly don't want to miss any ofrepparttar 135840 details of their development. I also want them to remember me meaningfully untilrepparttar 135841 next time I see them in six months. Holiday shopping helps. With family beingrepparttar 135842 central focus ofrepparttar 135843 holidays allrepparttar 135844 other holiday concerns melt away. Though inrepparttar 135845 end after we arrived back in New York and I stepped back on my weight scale and I realized something very important. I'm sure you remember my first "diet" experiment which was ' Atkins' and its terrible results. I have since broughtrepparttar 135846 carbs back into my daily regime focusing once again on healthy, whole grains, veggies galore plus lean proteins. Also I am trying to eat more meals with smaller portions for blood sugar regulation, meaning no blood sugar spikes that trigger insulin which triggers cortisol causing fat storage aroundrepparttar 135847 abdomen. I can usually make time for four meals a day. So this years results from Holiday foods were astounding because my weight hadn't changed at all. Whereas last year when I had stoppedrepparttar 135848 Atkins I had gained four pounds overrepparttar 135849 holidays. Here'srepparttar 135850 reason why I had such different results. It wasn't because this time around I was more disciplined and controlled. It also wasn't because I avoided food. It was because my body was used torepparttar 135851 carbs which are a necessary component of daily nutrients so I didn't have this overreaction with water retention torepparttar 135852 extra carbs.

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