Is stress killing us?
Stress is everywhere waiting to leap when you least expect it. This evening it leaped from my fridge while I was getting milk. How? i hear you ask. Well on opening the fridge all the appliances in the ground floor and the lights upstairs turned off.
I was sent off down to the cellar where the fuse box lives. Fortunately this doesn't hold quite the spider filled terror as it once did, but there are places I'd rather be. Having reset the fuses, plunged the house into darkness, refused to pay for an emergency electrician I finally got things working, for now..
Having dealt with this minor stress I don't think I can be bothered to cook so pizza delivery it is. Unfortunately this is just the kind of approach that a recent study has shown could be killing me.
A recent study undertaken by researchers in the Netherlands found that peoples risk of death from cardiovascular events increased significantly if they suffered major life events. Dr Rutters and her colleagues from VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam compared groups of people who had suffered major life events over the past fifteen years against those who had not. She found those who suffered three or more had a 51% increased risk in mortality.
The events they included were serious such as the death of a spouse or child. One of their hypotheses was that serious stressos might make people more likely to turn to unhealthy lifestyles and hence leading to higher risk for diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
There's not much you can do to avoid major life events, but building strategies to cope with the stress they cause might reduce their impact on your health. So I've changed my mind on the pizza and am having a healthy stir fry instead!