How Stress Damages Your Health and What to Do About It

If you are serious about looking after your health, you need to know how to recognise the symptoms of stress and do something about it!

Periods of prolonged stress can devastate your health. Of the ten leading causes of death, stress has been directly implicated in four - cardiovascular disease, stroke, musculo-skeletal disorders, suicide/homicide.

Let's take a closer look at the condition we call 'stress'! 


Stress - a 20th Century Disease?

In 1935, stress researcher Hans Selye conducted experiments using laboratory animals and came up with three distinct response stages when stressed - the Alarm Stage, the Resistance Stage and the Exhaustion Stage.

Do You Feel Stressed and Totally Wired Up?

If so, you're in the Alarm Stage. Your body has gone into an immediate and heightened reaction. Your pituitary gland secretes hormones which stimulate the production of cortisol and adrenalin.

The adrenalin mobilizes reserves of sugar from your liver and muscles, stored proteins are broken down, blood sugar soars, minerals are drawn from your bones, fat cells are mobilized and your blood pressure increases.

Physical exertion, like running, dissipates the adrenalin from your bloodstream, and your body relaxes. Adrenalin is slightly toxic and poisons your body if not used up - that's why a cat will play around with the mouse before killing and eating it. By batting it around the adrenalin is dissipated and the exhausted animal dies or is killed.

 What Happens When The Stress Doesn't Go Away?

If you are under constant and repeated stress, your body is in a constant state of damage control, using any materials at hand to repair.

Eventually your body becomes exhausted. Your adrenal glands can't respond to stress any more - the battery is flat. This is the Exhaustion Phase, where your adrenal glands can no longer "rise to the challenge". Your "fight and flight" response is no longer on high alert, and even struggles to raise the alarm!

If your nutrition is good, your body can withstand stress for many years without suffering too much.

Common Symptoms of Adrenal Exhaustion

In the Exhaustion Phase, you may experience some or all of these symptoms:

  • You feel tired and stressed all the time
  • You've lost your motivation
  • You are waking in the early hours of the morning and can't get back to sleep again
  • Your immune system is low and you are getting continuous infections
  • You are hot-tempered, easily upset, quarrelsome
  • You feel depressed/overwhelmed/teary and confused
  • You're forgetful, finding it hard to remember people's names and where you put things

Sound familiar?

Simple Ways to Respond To Stress And Prevent Adrenal Exhaustion

  • Most importantly, re-evaluate your attitude!
  • Focus on what is happening right now, and drop the heavy baggage of past and future
  • Talk to someone you trust
  • Go for a walk
  • Breathe deeply
  • Find something every day to be grateful for
  • Remember that it's not the event that matters so much as how you see it.




You can help your body to deal with stress. As always food is your FIRST medicine.

  • Eat wholesome unprocessed foods for maximum nutrition.
  • Your diet needs to be high in protein, vitamins C, B complex, E, essential fatty acids and all minerals which are all needed for hormone production. Whole grains, pulses, eggs, yoghurt/kefir, green leafy vegetables, fruit, seaweeds
  • Nutrient rich superfoods such as spirulina, chlorella, maca powder, bee pollen and goji berries all contain high amounts of vitamins and minerals that help to regenerate tired glands.

 If you are feeling overwhelmed and powerless to make many changes there is a very powerful and very quick way to reduce stress.You do it every day.

This powerful tool is breathing.

Simple changes in the way you breathe, once or twice a day, can have far- reaching and beneficial effects on your body and mind. Breathing deep into your chest and abdomen can help to bring down stress, enhance your immune system function and promote relaxation. The best thing about it is - everyone has time to breath!

Deep breathing turns on the part of your nervous system which controls rest, relaxation, cell renewal and repair, decreases blood pressure and muscle tension and increases digestion.

In a word, it "turns off" stress.

It takes only 4 or 5 deep breaths twice a day, every day. Push out your abdomen and raise your chest as far as possible. Exhale slowly, allowing the simple relaxation of your muscles to push the air out. At first, it may feel difficult to get a deep breath or to inhale slowly. Keep practicing and it will get easier. It's simple, takes no time at all, and can be done anywhere, anytime. It will balance the body and change your lives.

What are you waiting for?



IBD Medical (an IBD Group company) is an Australian-owned boutique pharmacy sales and distribution company. We are committed to providing innovative yet cost-effective solutions to common personal problems. We search the world for high-end quality medical & personal care products that have been proven to be effective. We then make them available to our customers in Australia at affordable prices.

Article by: Elspeth M Taimre - a Naturopath, Herbalist, Educator. Visit her website at to get your question answered. Article Source:

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