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Holiday Heart Stress

Posted Dec 07 2009 12:00am

Are you feeling the stress of the economy, the holidays, work and family? Around this time of year we all feel a little more pressure than usual to get things done on time and economically. You may be wondering though if the stress is too much for your heart! What exactly are the facts about how stress effects your heart? It may not be quite what you are expecting…

Physicians and scientists have hypothesized for many years that stress can play a big role in heart attacks. However, where are all the studies to support this? There have been a few over the past 30 years but the most recent study was done in London in 2008. It showed that chronic work stress can significantly increase the risk of heart disease in people younger than age 50. One of the important things to note from the study is that a person’s risk was MOST significantly increased when the stress made them prone to bad behaviors such as smoking, lack of exercise and increased alcohol intake.

The bottom line is that we need more studies to support the reduction of stress in high risk people. If you have a hard time de-stressing, especially during the holidays, just remember the more important things to do are avoid the bad behaviors and KEEP EXERCISING!

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