Tag: health

How Stress Can Break Your Heart`

stress

Most of us heard about the relationship between diet and heart disease. We know that too much cholesterol and fat in the body can trigger a heart attack. What about unhappy thoughts, stress and the feeling that life is going against you? Does your thinking affect your heart’s health?

Put your left fist, thumb on top, up to your breast bone, slightly to the left of the centre. Squeeze your fist hard and rhythmically. Your heart beats like this, some 100,000 times a day pumping about four quarts of blood through your body minute (and much more when you are stressed or are exercising)

Put your fist back up against your breast bone, thumb up. Squeeze it as hard as you can, again and again. Imagine doing this all day long, year after year, for a lifetime.

Oxygen is not the only vital substance that the heart pumps through the body. Hormones secreted by the pituitary gland, by the adrenal glands, by the thyroid, and by other glands are carried to every cell in the body. So are the products of digestion, such as glucose, vitamins and enzymes.

Blood does not randomly flow through the body, of course. It flows systematically through a seemingly endless series of arteries and veins. When oxygen enriched blood leaves the heart, it flows through large arteries and smaller arteries, and then through the very small arterioles. The arterioles give way t the tiny capillaries. Only when the blood has reached capillaries does it exchange its oxygen for carbon dioxide. At this point, the blood begins its journey back to the heart. For capillaries to venules to veins, the blood flows through ever widening pipes back to the heart.

The arterial vessels carrying freshly oxygenated blood from the heart can be viewed as life giver in this ital exchange; they bring oxygen, nutrients,, hormones and other substances to the body’s tissues. The veins guiding the “used” blood back to the heart can be viewed as the garbage disposal part of the system.

The Simple Formula

In medical school, doctors learn a simple formula: blood Pressure = Cardiac output x arterial Resistance. This means that your blood pressure level depends on how much blood the heart pumps per unit of time (cardiac output) and how difficult it is for the blood to move through the “pipes” (arterial resistance).

If your heart starts beating faster than normal, its output has increased. And greater cardiac output means increased blood pressure. Your heart is trying to move the blood through the “pipes” faster, and much work harder to do so. When it does this, your blood pressure increases.

When you exercise, your cardiac output and your blood pressure increase. In a young, healthy person, this increase is nothing to worry about. Eventually, the arteries relax, expand in size, and your blood pressure drops to normal.

But stress can also increase your cardiac output; it can make your heart beat harder and faster. In fact, stress may be a major cause of elevated blood pressure. When we are stressed, we may feel like nothing is going right, like we’re going to blow the big job, like we’re always behind. We feel that people are standing in your way, or we’re upset about being caught in traffic. When we’re stressed, the brain stimulates the sympathetic nervous system. In turn, the sympathetic nervous system prompts the adrenal medulla (the inside part of the adrenal glands) to pump out adrenaline like substances. This is turning increases the heart rate, and the strength of the beat. In other words, your thought alone can lead to increased cardiac output, which leads to higher blood pressure.

There’s a certain part of the brain, the hypothalamus, which we call the “pilot” of the brain because it controls so many body processes. The hypothalamus sits right above the pituitary gland. When the hypothalamus “reads” your negative thoughts and other signs of stress, it tells the pituitary to release a hormone called ACTH (adrenocorticotrophic hormone). ACTH then flows to the adrenal glands, where it directs them to release a number of hormones including some 42 varieties of cortisone. Amount other things; these hormones cause your body to retain salt and water. More fluid in the bloodstream means more work for the heart.

When stress is chronic, the blood vessels constrict (“tighten up”). Remember the equation, Blood Pressure = Cardiac output x Arterial Resistance? When the “pipes” get smaller, it’s harder for the blood flow thought them. Arterial resistance is increased, which means blood pressure goes up. Additionally, chronic stress changes the chemistry of the blood, making it more likely to clot. This means there’s great chance that a clot will form and lodge in a narrow artery in the heart, and cause heart attack; or it may lodge in the brain and lead to a stroke.

Having some stress in our lives is probably all right and may be helpful if it prompts us to action. Chronic stress, however, is hard on the heart.

Blood pressure = Cardiac Output x Arterial Resistance. It’s a simple formula. If you keep your heart working at normal speed and strength, if the resistance to the flow of blood through the arteries remains normal, everything will be fine. But if stress sets in motion the series of events that kicks your heart into high gear, and causes fluid retention and contracted arteries, your blood pressure will go up.

Cholesterol and Stress

Put your fist back up to your chest. Look down at the back of your fist. See the veins that are just beneath the skin? Imagine that these are your coronary arteries that supply fresh, oxygen rich blood to the heart muscle. Some of these vital arteries are only as wide as the tip of a pencil.

Let’s suppose that you’ve been eating a high fat, cholesterol rich diet and that some of your coronary arteries have narrowed not fatally so: a 50 percent blockage in this artery, a 60 or 75 percent narrowing in that. You can do reasonably well these kinds of blockages, unless stress causes cholesterol levels in the body to rise. Many studies have verified the relationship between stress and elevated cholesterol. If you throw people into ice cold water, their cholesterol will rise. If you threaten them, tell they’re going be fired, or tell them that they must take a difficult test, their cholesterol will go up.

Stress and elevated cholesterol are intimately related. Chronic anger, fear, “hurry-itis”, feelings that you are a failure, that life is out to get you; these thoughts increase blood pressure and cholesterol. Such thoughts can shorten your life. Cholesterol is more likely to be normal in people who have a positive, cheerful, confident, outlook on life.

Stress in the workplace

Work can be major source of stress. Specialists in the field of work induced disability now know that certain jobs are inherently stressful. Police work and fire fighting, for example, are highly stressful jobs; other kinds of work can also be stressful. Whether we are factory workers, clerks, attorneys, or chairmen of major companies, we often find ourselves under tremendous stress at work, on the way to work, and at home when we’re thinking about work.

For most of us, work related stress falls into two categories work overload and role conflict.

Work Overload: There are two types of work overload: Quantitative or qualitative. Quantitative work overload has to be with numbers: too many things to do in the day, too many thin phone calls to makes, too many orders to fill, too many boards to nail, too many clients to see. Too many things to do, in too little time. How often they are rushing around at work, trying to get everything done, but never quite succeeding? What is this doing to your heart, your body chemistry, your peace of mind and your health?

Qualitative work overload, on the other hand, has to do with standards that you cannot meet. You are called upon to perform beyond your ability. This happens when people are improperly trained. Or, you may be well qualified for one job, but find yourself promoted or transferred to a job that you aren’t as skilled at. The stress and frustration of trying to perform a different kind of work or to perform at higher levels, lead to work overload, mental distress and often physical disease.

It doesn’t take much overload to damage the heart. A study in the April edition of The New England Journal of Medicine reported on patients with coronary artery disease. The patients were asked to perform mental arithmetic, to complete a certain color word task, to give a speech, and to read aloud. The stress from these everyday tasks was enough to cause well motion abnormalities in many of the patients. (Wall motion abnormalities have to do with the way the heart muscle squeezes to pump blood).

Quantitative or qualitative work overload causes definite biochemical changes in the body, especially with respect to cholesterol levels. Many studies have shown the relationship between work overload and heart attacks, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and other potentially fatal disorders.

Role Conflict: Role conflict occurs when two or more pressures are in conflict with one another. It generates stress that causes mental distress, and man lead to actual physical disease. Research has shown that long tern role conflict leads certain people to experience high cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, obesity, heart disease and other medical problems.

Release valve

The steam engine is a marvelous invention. Coal is burned in the engine, a steam forms and the steam is used to activate the turbines. Seam engines do a lot of work, and they all have a safety valve, just in case too much steam builds up inside the engine. It’s a great idea: let off the excess steam rather than risk damaging the machinery.

In our houses, stores, office buildings and factories, all the electrical circuits have build in circuit breakers or fuses. When there is an electrical overload, the fuses automatically blow, putting an immediate end to the overload before it can cause any damage.

It would be nice if we had a safety valve that let off excess and inappropriate stress. We don’t have a safety valve, but our bodies give us warning signals when trouble is brewing, when we are overloaded, or in conflict. The warnings may be seemingly minor problems such as headaches, neck ache, backaches or, the waning may be in form of heaviness in the chest, heart palpitations, or high blood pressure. The latter are more serious warnings, and must b corrected right away. Unfortunately, we don’t have a safety valve, and sometimes our warnings come too late. We should reduce the stress n our lives before these warning signals occur.

Healthy Thoughts, Healthy Heart

Every year thousands of peoples have a heart attack. Although some survive, for others a fatal heart attack was their only warning that anything was wrong. Since stress is so intimately related for ways to keep our stress level as low as possible.

Some stressors can be dealt with easily; we can change our diet and stop smoking, for example. And we can take nutrients that help protect us against the effects of environmental pollution and chemicals in our foods. But what can we do about traffic, work overload and the like? What if we can’t find a new job, or move to a city where there is little traffic? How do we handle the stress?

We learn a lesson from Epictetus, The Roman Philosopher (A.D. 55-135) who said: “I am upset not by events, but rather by the way I view them.”

With the single statement, Epictetus gave us a “medicine” for many of our ills. If we can’t eliminate every stressor in our lives, we can change our attitudes. May be we have to take a major highway to work, and maybe it’s always crowded. We can’t change the traffic, but we can learn t change our thoughts about the traffic. You see, alone control your thoughts. You, and only you, determine what your thoughts will b, whether positive or negative.

You have absolute control over your thoughts, and every thought in your head influence your body, your immune system, and your health. Beat “thought disease” by changing you thoughts. Remember that stress and your thoughts have a profound influence on your heart. Your stomach isn’t the only thing tied in knots by stress. Help your heart by keeping your thoughts as healthy, positive, happy, and optimistic as possible. Even when things are going wrong, even if you are overloaded at work, fill your mind with healthy thoughts. Your healthy thoughts may not change your unhappy work situation, but they will most certainly help protect your heart from the ravages of stress.

We ‘humans’ have got the life a billion years ago. There have been five mass extinctions in earth’s history. We are living through the sixth. And now we too are running at a pace to end it all. This time it will be our fault.

The new discoveries and inventions have made our lifestyle full of convenience. But our bodies require work. Just like the sedentary water starts smelling, the sedentary lifestyle has given rise to many chronic diseases like the heart problems, diabetes and hypertension.

Today, the health researchers are suggesting that most of the chronic diseases that have appeared in man’s life are due to STRESS. From where it has come. It is the bi-product of our so-called modern lifestyle.

We are standing at the edge of cliff. Immediate actions are required to bring back the healthy days. We must incorporate exercise, balanced diet, sound sleep, and the most importantly happy and positive thoughts to our lifestyle to get rid of all health problems.

I believe “The opposite of great truth is also true.”

Day and Night, Work and Rest, Art and Science… they all looks opposite but my viewpoint is they compliment each other.

The more you relax, the more you active. Life is a balance between what we can and what we cannot. Learn to live between effort and surrender.

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Optimizing a Healthy Lifestyle

healthy life

The human body is a highly evolved biological machine. Lifestyle plays a big role in optimizing your general health. It’s in your best interest to adopt a healthy one. I know it’s not easy to develop one; but, doing so can definitely do wonders to your body for the long haul. But, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to do walking, swimming, running and biking, even in your twilight years?

Consider how you think, eat, train, recuperate, plan, focus and more. It goes without saying that these core essentials of lifestyle alone could stand a level-up in each of our lives as persons, parents, professionals who may also be into the military, sports, creative pursuits on top of “life” itself.

In life, knowing that energy is everything and everything depends on this vital energy is essential. The thing is, the energy we’re talking about most of us have taken for granted for far too long because you can’t see it or touch it.

Nonetheless, you experience this, your primary source of energy, every minute of every day, and while you know when it’s depleted you often won’t know how depleted until you hit the wall-an athletic term to describe depleted energy. It’s your battery power, your body is the battery, and it’s easy to misinterpret how much power you have unless you are informed and skilled. It’s because we’re living with an underlying personal energy deficit that compromises human function and therefore your lifestyle which reinforces the vicious cycle.

If you think that energy is merely the result of what you eat and drink or how you think (psychology) and that you go to sleep merely because it’s dark, everyone else is doing it and your tired (but don’t know why), chances are you are living in a chronic state of energy deficit because you don’t value sleep enough or understand the profound impact it’s having on your life or the lack thereof.

The food you take in can either heal or harm. You make that choice every day by what you put on your mouth. Most of the food consumed by humans has been carbohydrates. In fact, plant foods are comprised mostly of carbohydrates: vegetables, fruits, beans, whole grains, nuts, seeds, herbs, and spices. These foods contain slowly released sources of sugar that prevent surges of blood sugar and insulin.

Too much insulin causes heart disease, diabetes, cancer, depression, and even dementia. Carbohydrates contain almost all the vitamins and minerals our bodies need to operate normally and optimally. They also contain fiber, which helps normalize our digestive function and slows the absorption of sugar and fats into the body, keeping us balanced. The bonuses in plant foods are phytonutrients, a colorful healing compounds made by plants to protect themselves, but that also protect us against aging, obesity, brain damage, and more.

Success breeds success. This is true if you optimize your lifestyle by tending your meals to reflect a troubled time of day when you’re pressed for time and squeezed for energy, and you come up with a solution, all of your mealtimes will transform.

Lifestyle optimization is not a matter of “discipline,” but of choice.

5 Foods to Improve Men’s Health

healthy food

We all know that women’s health issues are always considered something very important, as they have to give birth and maintain their health. But, when it comes to men’s health people are not much interested in it. Don’t think that it doesn’t matter, as it matter equally as than women’s health. Men are no doubt very different than woman, which means that their needs are also different when it comes to maintaining better health. The diet and exercise both matters a lot for keeping a man healthy throughout his life, hence making him fit in his older years also.

If you are a man, know that most of the food items you love eating are actually not very healthy for you. While some of them may be dangerous for you, and when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle it is very important to add foods in your life which can make you healthy. With a proper diet and exercise routine you can also lower down your risks of heart attacks and any kind of cancer.

Here today I am going to tell you about some foods which can help you maintain a healthy body and mind. So, make sure that you add them in your diet.

1. Oysters

I am sure that many of you are shocked by this, but know that health experts have made this food item must if you are willing to have a very healthy sexual life. They are filled with anti-oxidants and zinc, that will help you stay energetic throughout the day. Zinc is a very important nutrient that helps your body to repair dead cells and produce DNA.

2. Bananas

You can surely go bananas over bananas! They are the best source for quick energy and are extremely rich in potassium which helps in regulating a normal heart beat and blood pressure. Diets that are normally rich in potassium and magnesium will help to reduce your chances of heart stroke. Eating bananas also aid your immune system. Make sure that you add bananas in your diet, not only they can satisfy your craving for a sweet thing, but will provide you with tons of benefits also.

3. Fatty

I am sure that you may have not heard about it somewhere else, but keep in mind that the healthy fat and omega-3 fatty acids are one of the most required nutrients by the body. They can help increase the health of your heart, lower down your risks of strokes, and prostate cancer. You can choose from salmon, tuna, sardines and herring according to your taste. It is recommended that you should eat fish twice a week for best health benefits.

4. Broccoli

Now, it’s really weird that many people eat it because of different reasons, but today after knowing the benefits it is packed of will impress you a lot to add it in your diet plan forever. This is one of the best super foods that you can get in any season. If you don’t like its taste, then you can switch to Cabbage, Brussles Sprouts and even Bok Choy. These veggies are filled with vitamin-C and sulphoraphane which are strongly filled with anti cancerous properties.

5. Brazil Nuts

Not only these buts make a great snack, but also you can add them in your diet for a good supply of magnesium and selenium and some anti oxidants which can help you prevent heart diseases and cancers, including prostate cancer. These nuts also reduce bad cholesterol, and increase your heart’s health.

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