Positive Aging‎ > ‎

Stress and Our Adaptions


A new body of research suggests aging may be more related to the way we react to stress(in addition to the absence of disease and our chronological age).

In fact, healthy aging is a good bet if we moderate stress levels and adopt an active, healthy lifestyle, according to researchers at the 114th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association.

From a review of studies on how stress hormones affect the brain, psychologist Bruce McEwen, PhD, of the Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology at the Rockfeller University in New York, finds more evidence that our biological and behavioral responses can be adaptive but can also cause damage when the responses are:

  • Over produced
  • Under produced
  • Go on for a long time

"Acute stress seems to enhance immune function and improves memory but chronic stress has the opposite effect and can lead to disorders like:

  1. Depression
  2. Diabetes
  3. Cognitive impairment in aging

said McEwen".

Cumulative stress effects, said McEwen, are showing up in people who are under constant stress like those:

  • In caregiver situations
  • Who suffer from obesity
  • Who suffer from diabetes

McEwen and his researchers demonstrated that chronic stress may generate chemical changes which may contribute to the aging process of cells.That may led to some age-related diseases.

Our adaptions to stress are followed by cell and brain activity which in turn may impact our aging process.

If we change our adaptions to stress could that modify or even reduce the aging process?