Page 110 - South Mississippi Living - June, 2022
P. 110

 story by Luke Height
      Living under pressure can take a toll on your body. Learn how to manage your stress and anxiety.
Do you feel like you just want to scream? Cry? Are you feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or stressed? Don’t worry, you’re not
alone. We all feel these things, and the science behind it is very interesting.
Stress is caused by a few different hormonal reactions we have in our body. Generally, adrenaline and
cortisol are the main components for our feelings of stress.
Adrenaline is a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands, especially in conditions
of stress, increasing rates of blood circulation, breathing, and carbohydrate
metabolism and preparing muscles for exertion. In other words, our brains
tell our body that there is something in our environment that presents a threat
or opportunity, and our bodies start to produce adrenaline to deal with it. Many years ago, this served us well as
hunters and gatherers. However, today, we feel stress and anxiety in situations that
often don’t have the same life and death consequences.
Just imagine an ambitious businessman waking up anxious to take on the day. He feels the stress of his tasks ahead and jumps out of bed before his alarm in panic to meet his deadlines. This
feeling he gets, that feeling that wakes him up, is the same feeling one would get in the matter of life and death. A primitive person got that same feeling when the village was under attack, a snake or predator was seeking to eat one of their young, at war, or on a hunt.
Today, we feel this stress in an office, during a meal, or even driving to get a pedicure. Our brains haven’t quite figured out how to differentiate between the threat of an attack and a late phone bill. The tiniest of anxieties can cause our brains and bodies to feel as if our lives are at stake.
Therefore, it’s our responsibility to learn practices such as exercise, healthy eating, and meditation to deal with this dilemma in the best way possible. By understanding the science of how stress works, we can start learning how to calm ourselves down and deal with the tasks at hand.
110 | June 2022 | SOUTH MISSISSIPPI Living

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