how stress affects the body

May 31, 2012 § 2 Comments

Stress… vast topic and hard to define because it is such a subjective phenomenon! Stress differs for each of us, the cause, the nature and the stress response vary for every individual. I believe a bit of stress is good because it pushes us to achieve things but overall stress is highly destructive. Stress can induce a physical, an emotional or a mental response, the below infographic (“How stress affects the body”, source: Daily Infographic) captures very simply and very thoroughly the effects of stress on our body. It is pretty scary and sadly I am sure each of us will be able to identify at least one sign or symptom of stress for ourselves. The common tendency for individuals is to ignore the way stress affects us because we are to busy “doing”, “running” but also because in lots of cases the consequences of stress are not immediate but they will manifest in the long term so we neglect it without measuring the deep negative impact it has and will have on our health. Yoga is a fantastic tool to address stress in our daily lives, on the spot and on an on-going basis: physical postures (asanas), breathing practices (pranayama), relaxation and meditation techniques certainly help release the pressure we hold in our body caused by the influence of our mind. Yoga enables us to alter our mental perception of stress so we can transform the entire experience, yoga enables us to activate the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) which is responsible for physical relaxation and emotional calm as opposed to the the sympathetic nervous system (SNS) which is activated when a stress response kicks in.

Stress on the Body Infographic

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§ 2 Responses to how stress affects the body

  • peonut says:

    Thank you for this, as someone who has a stressful job (and loves it) and has been dealing with the physical manifestations of it over the last couple of months, you have given me a lot to think about.

    Good post!

    • alex says:

      I am glad this post was helpful “peonut”! I have been there and making adjustments in your life to maintain the love for your job and a good health is essential. Yoga was the key for me so i highly recommend it but any activity that makes you feel serene and allows for personal develop is as good. Good luck in finding what works for you!

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