Stress Archives - Health Smart Epiphany

Stress Archives - Health Smart Epiphany

Medical Pearls: Volunteer, but in Moderation

Many retirees suddenly realize that they are actually trying to find ways to add stress to their lives to keep them interested in engaged. That’s not a bad thing when the stress is minimal. Sometimes stress becomes excessive when we volunteer and take on too many tasks, when we create deadlines and over-schedule ourselves; probably because we miss the stress and the adrenaline rush which we had before retiring. During periods of excessive stress created by deadlines, it’s very hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle, and we tend to slack off on our exercise routine, and eat more carbs and calories. This leads to more insulin resistance, more carb craving and more stress, which we can eventually lead to catastrophe. Volunteering is one of the best bastions of American way of life, and we should encourage it, but we should also abstain from those tasks that get us so stressed out that we fall into a trap.

The cure: Learn to say NO! When you prefer to stay at home and read a book or watch a movie, decline that invitation to go out to dinner; when you have too much on your plate, decline the chairmanship of your club, even though you find it very attractive. You need to balance your humanitarian activities with the time needed for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Posted in Medical Pearls, Stress, Volunteering

tagged with humanitarian, lifestyle, Stress, volunteer

Medical Pearls: Birthdays and Cardiovascular Catastrophes

A study at the University of Western Ontario, Canada revealed that vascular events such as stroke, TIA, or acute myocardial infraction, were higher during patients’ birthdays than expected. No relationship was found between birthdays and other medical conditions. The authors postulated that stress associated with birthdays may trigger vascular events in patients with predisposing conditions.

The bottom line: If your heart rate increases when you’re at the center of attention, or if your brother is going to propose a toast that starts with: “I remember when he wore our mom’s bra…” and people start laughing at you, not with you, and you don’t have a funny comeback, then you’re better off having a quiet birthday with your spouse.

Note: The Canadian study did not evaluate the risk of stroke and heart attack during “surprise birthdays”.

Saposnik G et al.Neurology. 2006 Jul 25;67(2):300-4

tagged with birthday, Myocardial infraction, Stress, Stroke, vascular