Many of us recognize the important link between mind and body. Our thoughts have such a profound influence on our lives--and health.
There has been a lot of research linking job stress with heart disease. I write about job strain in my book (Unlocking the Healing Code) and present information about some key studies about job strain and heart disease. We have known for some time that there is a connection but we did not know the underlying mechanism. At least not until a recent study by Dr Tarani Chandola from University College London.
Dr. Chandola used data from the long-term Whitehall Study originally conducted by Sir Michael Marmot. The Whitehall study followed over 10,000 workers since 1985 and looked at a variety of factors contributing to heart disease.
The newer conclusions linked physiology with work stress. Some of the important findings were:
There was a 68% increase in coronary heart disease in people under age 50 who reported chronic work stress.
Those who reported greater work stress had a lower heart rate variablility and poor vagal tone.
Those who reported stress had a higher morning cortisol level. (Cortisol is an adrenal hormone that is associated with coronary artery disease).
They also showed a higher correlation with unhealthy habits such as not eating enough fruits and vegetables.
Bottom line is that we manufacture stress in our minds by how we perceive certain situations such as those presented at work. Our minds can then convert these stressful messages to chemicals that adversely affect our bodies.
For more about stress, health, mind-body healing and what you can do about it. See my book...