Our lives are filled with stress. We live in a complex and uncertain world. It doesn’t matter where the stress comes from work, family, financial problems or our surroundings, the effect on the body is the same. Emotional distress, physical pain and chronic inflammation are aggravated by the stress we encounter in our day to day lives.
Stress short-circuit’s the body’s bioelectrical system causing a serious disruption in the way the body functions. This results in a lowering of the immune system; increases in blood pressure and cholesterol levels; alterations of brain chemistry, blood sugar levels and hormonal balance. It also increases the growth of tumors.
How Stress Causes Disease
When you’re stressed, your body releases stress hormones like cortisol, which prepare your body to fight or flee the stressful event. Your heart rate increases, your lungs take in more oxygen, your blood flow increases and parts of your immune system become temporarily suppressed, which reduces your inflammatory response to pathogens and other foreign invaders.
When stress becomes chronic, however, your immune system becomes less sensitive to cortisol, and since inflammation is partly regulated by this hormone, this decreased sensitivity heightens the inflammatory response and allows inflammation to get out of control.
Dwelling on stressful events increases C-reactive protein in your body which increases inflammation.
Although it’s impossible to completely remove all the stressors in our lives there are tools which can help us compensate for the damages stress causes.
Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT), is one of these tools. It teaches you to reprogram your body’s reactions to the unavoidable stressors of everyday life. Developed in the 1990’s EFT is similar to acupuncture in that it stimulates different energy meridian points in the body by tapping them with your fingertips while using verbal affirmations.
The following video by EFT practitioner Julie Schiffman provides you with a general idea of just how simple EFT can be. It is particularly effective for relieving emotional or mental stress and anxiety but it can be used for physical pain relief as well. EFT can be done anytime you’re feeling stressed and as many times a day as you need to. When done in the morning, afternoon and right before bed it can help to de-stress the body.