Is there a connection between stress and cancer? A quick look into the research on stress physiology suggests that the relationship is more than a simple correlation. While there are many neuro-chemicals in the stress hormone cocktail for fight or flight, cortisol is considered THE stress hormone. Cortisol is responsible for increasing blood sugar levels for short term energy; fight as well as lipids in the blood for long term energy; flight. While there are several other responsibilities that Cortisol is associated with, it appears that when left lingering in the blood (and not flushed out through physical exercise) Cortisol (and we don’t know why) tends to destroy white blood cells. Simply stated, Cortisol (in large and lingering amounts) compromises the integrity of your immune system. Researchers suggest that we produce a cancer cell in our bodies every day (perhaps more often). In simplest terms, these white blood cells search and destroy the cancer cells, thus warding off any threat of rapidly proliferating cancerous tumors. If the numbers of white blood cells decreases due to the Cortisol effect, one can easily see how this story ends.
• Stress Tip(s) for the Day
One of the best ways to flush cortisol out of your body is to exercise regularly. Experts suggest every day, but if that seems like it won’t fit in your schedule, try at least every other day. Walking, swimming, bike riding, jogging, and hiking, are just a handful of ways to engage in the process of flushing the stress hormones out and allowing your body to return to homeostasis.
• Links/Books Worth Noting:
This link below offers some more information from the National Cancer Institute. The first reference is regarded as one of THE most comprehensive analysis of the topic.
Once again, I would like to make mention of Suzanne Sommer’s great book, Knockout. Anybody with cancer should read this book.
• Photo of the Day:
I took a mental health day yesterday (known in Colorado as a ski day or powder day) and went up to Copper Mountain to ski and do some photography. I spent the better part of the day at the Half pipe watching the snowboaders:Poetry in motion, but you judge for yourself. Enjoy!
• Quote for the Day:
“A sound mind in a sound body.” — Verjule
Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.