How Stress Affects the Immune System
Although our calendars and social lives may be a little quieter these days, our stress levels haven’t seen the same decline. Besides our standard life stressors: kids, family, work, school, 2020 has added its own list to our shoulders. More than ever, though, the need to manage our stress is essential. Learn How Stress Affects the Immune System in this month’s blog.
Why? It has a direct correlation to our immune system.
You’ve likely heard of “fight or flight,” our body’s sympathetic nervous system response to danger. It sends alert signals to the body to heighten senses, decrease digestion, increase heart rate, and focus circulation to the core organs- all which are important in some circumstances.
Unfortunately, our body sends the same signals whether we’re stressed because a car just slammed on their brakes in front of us…or we’re stressed watching the news.
Physiologically, our brain doesn’t distinguish between causes, it responds almost immediately.
When we spend the majority of our waking hours in this “fight or flight” state (the case for many Americans), cortisol levels remain high which decreases our body’s ability to heal and impairs our immune system.
Of course, eating healthy, properly hydrating, and improving quality of sleep all support a stronger immune system, but it’s just as important to allow the body ample time in the “rest and digest,” parasympathetic state:
- Instead of eating lunch at your desk or in the car, choose to eat in a calmer setting and focus on nourishing your body.
- Stop the scroll! Trade your phone for a book before bed.
- Find a quiet space for deep breathing, journaling, or reflecting.
- Create intention in your morning routine to allow a calmer transition into your day.
- Designate time for yoga or meditation.
- Utilize time in traffic or waiting in lines to listen to new podcasts.
- Pay attention to your body’s stress signals (elevated heart rate, irritation, muscular tension) and consciously settle the symptoms with deep breathing.
- Schedule an appointment with a reiki practitioner or holistic wellness coach.
Carving out 10-15 minutes of calm two or three times a day provides our bodies the opportunity to slow the heart rate, improve circulation, quite the adrenal glands, and strengthen immunity.
All of us at Thermographic Diagnostic Imaging are committed to the wellness of your mind, body, and soul. While we are open to guests, we have increased safety precautions in light of Covid-19. Please check our website for current considerations for the health of our guests and staff. Follow us on social media and stay up to date with our emails for at-home wellness tips for healthier habits.
Have a question? Reach out to us at 856.596.5834. For more information about TDI: Thermographic Diagnostic Imaging: Health Through Awareness, visit us at tdinj.com.