Corporate Wellness

Stress – The Primary Cause of Degenerative Disease

stress-primary-cause-degenerative-disease-first-respondersSeveral research studies have shown us that individuals employed in law enforcement, fire fighting, and other first-responder occupations are at significantly higher risk for degenerative health conditions. Outside of personal injury from physical confrontation or other risk factors, stress could easily be the crux of most degenerative health conditions threatening public servant personnel. Dealing with the effects of job-related stress has traditionally been addressed through psychological counseling. The fundamental defect in this approach stems from neglecting the intrinsic relationship between the mind and the body.

Stress: its so much more than a state of mind.

From a holistic perspective, stress is defined as the phenomenon of bringing the body out of homeostasis. Everything about how the body works revolves around maintaining a stable, relatively constant condition of properties such as temperature, pH, and electrolyte levels. By broadening our definition, we can now begin to understand how stress is related to obesity and other degenerative health conditions beyond depression, divorce, and suicide.

In reality, stress comes from many different origins and stimuli:

1. Physical stress can range from injury and physical exertion to immobility and repetitive use syndrome.

2. Emotional stress is most easily defined as “mental strain”. Psychological stress stems from five different stimuli or conditions:

  • Pressure
  • Loss
  • Frustration
  • Conflict
  • Threat

3. Environmental stress includes climate, air pollution, airborne allergens, etc.

4. Infections are the constant scenario whereby your body is dealing with foreign invaders

5. Poor nutrition, or malnourishment, can occur in cases of insufficient calories or excessive calories. Poor nutrition is the condition whereby at least one nutrient required for any one given metabolic process is absent or available in supplies insufficient to complete any given metabolic process. (eg. Magnesium is needed in over 300 metabolic reactions) Excess amounts of sugars and refined foods, for example, can diminish thiamine, niacin, B12, magnesium, and calcium. Low levels of these nutrients increase nervous-system reactivity, irritability, and nervousness. But even more serious is the realization that poor eating habits in general lead to low concentrations of nutrients in the blood, which can impair brain function.
first-responder-corporate-wellness-programs6. Sleep deprivation comes from inadequate sleep AND imbalanced ratios of the different sleep cycles.

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