12 Apr What is Stress?
‘Stress’ may be defined as any situation which tends to disturb the equilibrium between a living organism and its environment. In day-to-day life there are many stressful situations such as stress of work pressure, examinations, psychosocial stress and physical stresses due to trauma, surgery and various medical disorders
Many people know when they feel stress but what exactly is the stress that is being felt?
Stress is actually the primary cause of the loss of brain integration. When stress levels reach critical levels that activate your fight or flight systems, you are actually inhibiting the frontal lobe functions (also known as the problem solving part of the brain) and competing with the frontal lobe for the limited nutrients needed to maintain brain integration under stress.
Below are some brief explanations of the different types of stress that you may be exposed to and are feeling. If you can understand more about the type of stress that is affecting you then ultimately you can start working on a plan of action to help reduce, limit or eliminate that stress all together.
Mental Stress – Often caused by deadlines without being able to meet them in the require timeframes or to do lists with little to no time to complete them. This stress is more of an overwhelm that is a result of the lack of ability to prioritize what you need to do and what you don’t need to do now, or what order things should be done in.
Emotional Stress – Commonly arising from disputes, differences of opinion or people/situations simply not meeting your expectations. This kind of stress activates strong survival emotions and initiates that fight or flight response for Ego/Survival.
Physical Stress – More often than not this is fatigue caused by overwork and lack of sleep. The result of this stress is a depletion of nutrients and subsequently a lack of sufficient neurotransmitters to maintain homeostasis and optimum brain function.
Physiological Stress – Like emotional stress this activates the fight or flight responses but is usually due to emotions like fear, anger, anxiety, extreme sadness. This stress hypes up the Sympathetic Nervous System because it releases adrenalin and cortisol.
Biochemical Stress – This is when you have marginal Nutrient deficiencies which lead to inadequate production of energy and reduce the other functions in the body to be less than optimal.
Environmental Stress – There are chemicals in the air, ground, cosmetic products, on food and in our water. These stresses are ingested or placed on our skin and interfere with systems and processes every day. Depending on the level and amount of exposure to these could result in high levels of toxicity in our blood.
Reference: Dr Charles Krebs, “Nutrition For The Brain”