“Maintenance of life is critically dependent on keeping our internal milieu constant in the face of a changing environment.” —Claude Bernard (1865-1961)
The link between stress and health is clearly inverse. The more stress the worse health most endure. One tough issue revolves around social/emotional stress and how that triggers apathy or negative behavior.
Imagine marital stress, financial strain, illness of a spouse or child as just a few examples. Experience tells me, fighting and scratching through life for love or basic survival needs tends to push dietary and exercise habits lower on the totem pole of priorities.
Many may read this and say, well if these same folks would eat right and exercise they would feel better, have better emotional balance, energy etc…. All true in a chicken and egg sense.
My point? The struggle is real. I see the value in prioritizing diet and exercise high on the list. I definitely believe by deciding to eat better and exercise more often, most of my patients feel better and enjoy a greater sense of well-being. Many even experience improvement in how they perceive and respond to stress.
That said, too many people still fall victim to complacency and habit. Vision clouded by daily stress, responding to the immediate emotional threats, we easily forget about the cumulative danger of inactivity and crappy diet.
This post is short but something I sense many of my patients and readers struggle with. In fact, this stress/health dilemma burns in my mind as an underpinning problem for many conditions ranging from insomnia to Diabetes.
Any personal feedback or experiences with this dilemma are greatly appreciated.