“Stress is bad for health. You have to stay calm and positive.”
This is an oft repeated refrain from everyone—doctors included—around you. But did you know that not all stress is bad for health?In fact, it can help keep you happy and active.
Not quite, according to Dr. Richard Shelton, MD, vice chair for the psychiatry research at the University of Alabama Birmingham, who opines, “getting a little worked up is not bad for you.” He says, “The body’s fight-or-flight mechanism is to protect you and not to harm you.”
From enhancing your brainpower to strengthening your immunity, take a look at the other benefits of a little “every day stress” in your life.
SuperiorIQ: Who doesn’t like to function faster and better? Well, a little stress works to stimulate the production of neurotrophins in the brain, strengthening the connection between neurons which helps enhance concentration, and thereby, productivity. Studies suggest short term stress tends to improve your memory and your ability to learn quickly.
Enhanced inventiveness: Ask a visual artist or a writer when did they work best and pat comes the reply, “when I was frustrated and stressed”. Larina Kase, PhD, a psychologist from Pennslyvania says that stress comes either before or along with a breakthrough in your creative process. Your brain does its best work when it is processing too many facts. Most out-of-the-box ideas come when you are in a bind.
Heightened immunity: Most of ushave a fight-or-flight response to stress. Your body releases stress hormones, which helps boost the body’s defense mechanism. This in turn helps to keep you healthy and strong.
Get that fab body: When you run, walk, or lift weights, you add stress to your body, but it is good stress. Regular exercise helps to increase endorphins while reducing cortisol levels in the body.
And here you thought stress was bad for health!