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Oct 02

Anti-inflammatory Products

Anti-inflammatory Products

Originally posted at TerryAllison.com

Loneliness and Heart Health
By Brazos Minshew, TriVita Chief Science Officer

Can loneliness kill you? According to medical science, yes it can!
As humans, we need each other. Children die when they are deprived of human contact and even young adults have significantly higher blood pressure if they feel lonely. This high blood pressure can follow them into middle age where they are far more likely to suffer from heart attacks, strokes, obesity, and diabetes.

Adults cope better, especially women, but the diseases of emotional famine disable many people. Conditions that have been linked to loneliness include:

Chronic back pain
Ulcers
Migraine headaches

The good news is that many of these problems subside when a person feels connected to a community. Indeed, it is only in community that you can experience life in its robust diversity.

Loneliness and the heart
Emotional turmoil causes an inflammatory reaction in the circulatory system. The blood vessels stiffen and your heart has difficulty pumping blood. Blood pressure increases and the increase damages delicate organs, such as the lungs, kidneys, eyes, and especially the blood vessels themselves. That is why heart attacks and strokes are so common among lonely people.

Interestingly, the illnesses suffered by lonely, bored, and emotionally starved people are the same as those experienced by people under great emotional stress, such as those engaged in active combat in war. Both extremes, too much stimulation and too little, trigger the fight or flight mechanism. This emergency-survival mechanism interferes with the enzymes that block inflammation. Inflammation is like a heavy burden on an over-taxed system: the weakest link is sure to break!

Many people in North America have weakened their hearts with high salt or high fat foods, a sedentary lifestyle, poor sleep, and chronic stress. Loneliness adds a burden that is just too much for the human body to take, the proverbial straw that breaks the camels back, and a heart attack, stroke, or other crisis becomes inevitable. That is the medical description for the impact of loneliness. How can we prevent this chain of events from killing us?

Women save humanity, again!
Interestingly, the amount of time spent alone does not determine the degree of loneliness. For instance, undergraduate students rated their loneliness and then reported on their social interactions and other habits throughout the school year. Those most lonely and those least lonely did not spend significantly more or less time in social contacts with others. The lonely students did, however, perceive that their social contact made demands of them that they simply could not meet.

The same report shed light on an interesting phenomenon: spending time talking with women, for both sexes, provided protection from feelings of loneliness. Many theories have been advanced to explain this but consensus from scientists appears elusive. Communication styles differ between men and women. Men seem to prefer transactional conversations while women typically exemplify negotiation, compromise, empathy, and forgiveness.

When feelings of loneliness are eliminated, high blood pressure is reduced. For instance, normal systolic blood pressure is about 120 mm-hg. Chronically lonely people typically experience an increase in blood pressure that may take them above 150 mm-hg (the danger zone is any systolic pressure above 140 mm-hg). Social integration yields a reduction in blood pressure of 10 to 30 mm-hg. As a comparison, achieving a weight loss of 25 pounds or more for the obese can reduce their blood pressure by 5 to 20 mm-hg and regular physical exercise reduces blood pressure by 4 to 9 mm-hg.

It is even as Robert McAfee Brown noted, How does one keep from growing old inside? Surely only in community.

Take Control of Your Health

Increase Your Social Support: Meet others to help reduce loneliness. Take a class at a community college, volunteer, or join a church, or community group.

Take the Wellness Challenge.

Other health related articles.

Start a health and wellness business. Here is your webinar invite for more information: Webinar Invitation.

Posted by
Terry L. Allison, Sr., #13134349 1 Star
Independent TriVita Affiliate Member
Skype: allisonmarketinggroup
Phone: 859-858-9246
Creator of Tomorrows Home Business Social Community
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