Heart Disease Causes – The Link Between Stress and Heart Disease


There are many lifestyle factors which cause heart disease.This particular cause seems to be one of those common knowledge assertions: that stress can cause heart disease. Although this is a general belief, there really isn’t much medical literature related to the connection between emotional stress and cardiovascular disease. At least, not until recently.
The body’s reaction to a stressful event is programmed into us to save our lives. Over the long course of human evolution, finding yourself in a potentially dangerous situation demanded an adrenaline surge allowing the body to respond in a quick and powerful way. We still have that response, although much of what triggers it is no longer life-threatening wild beasts!
An overdue bill, an annoying phone call, a cranky boss, all can trigger the body’s fight or flight response causing the adrenaline to flow. Over time, this can lead to problems with the cardiovascular system including high blood pressure and a weakened heart.
What is interesting is that although we may all share the fight or flight response to similar events, each person reacts in a different way. Our distant ancestors went into a fast sprint to avoid the danger, dissipating the effect. Today, many internalize their fear or frustration and have no healthy way to get rid of the anger, the fear, and the anxiety of modern life.
There is also a connection between damage to the cardiovascular system and the exact type of emotional stress. Those that suffer the most damage are the people who feel they have little to no control over their situation, whether it is personal or workplace. Although a clerk may have little actual control over their workplace situations, they can try to have mental control over their reactions by looking at the whole situation in a different light. Rather than taking everything so seriously, a lighter mood and a feeling of less desperation can be achieved by mentally stepping back from the situation. It is like the old “go with the flow” attitude, easing back a little and not fighting the situation.
Studies are showing that people undergoing the exact same type of stress react differently, and the way they react influences a host of biochemical reactions in the body. Remember the Type A personality that is characterized by impatience and a chronic sense of urgency? These are the people who have a higher risk of artery disease and subsequent heart problems. The more patient Type B personality has a less urgent view of time, is less competitive, and less easily angered.
Avoiding stress may be an impossible goal, but dealing differently with everyday stress can be a life-saving goal. If you find yourself impatient in a line or traffic jam, try looking at it as a time to relax instead. After all, while you are stuck in line you really have nothing to do, you can just stand there and relax for a moment while taking a few deep breaths before the line moves along and you have to get back to work on something. Those few moments relaxing and deeply breathing can lower blood pressure, reduce your heart rate, and refresh your mind.
Monique Hawkins is an enthusiastic advocate for the use of safe and effective high quality, natural, alternative health products to treat and prevent heart disease. To learn about how to prevent and treat heart disease naturally, visit her blog for weekly tips at heart disease and women

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