Stress is ruining your body! So it’s time to get a grip. Here’s how stress affects your body and what you can do to relax. We found this in Ladies Home Journal.

  • Let’s talk about your stomach. Stress hormones temporarily slow down digestion of food in the stomach, increase the secretion of stomach acids, and increase the speed at which food moves through your intestines. All of which can cause increased inflammation of the stomach lining. So what can you do? Try meditating. Studies show that meditation can help reduce the symptoms of abdominal pain that can result from stomach distress. So sit in a quiet place, breathe deeply, and repeat a simple, calming phrase – like “I can handle anything.”
  • What about your back? When stressed people sit down, a lot of them slump from the waist and hunch their shoulders. Then they sit in this position for the eight hours they’re at work or school and again during the commute home. All of this awkward body-twisting can cause back pain. What’s the fix? Try to pay attention to your posture throughout the day: Aim to keep your back straight, your feet flat on the floor, and your head directly over your spine. According to a study at Chicago’s Loyola University Medical Center, correct posture – both sitting and standing - can cut back pain by as much as 70 percent. Try this trick to relax: Hunch your shoulders to tighten your shoulder and neck muscles, hold for three seconds, then relax. Repeat this five times to loosen up.
  • How does stress affect your skin? When your brain registers a stress alarm, your skin can become sensitive. If the stress is chronic, this heightened sensitivity can lead to problems like rashes, acne, and hives. What should you do? Try exercising. This’ll encourage sweating, which can help clean out pores and stimulate blood circulation to help heal your skin.

But the bottom line is this: If stress is causing your stomach to churn, your back to ache, and your skin to go nuts, you need to take the steps to relax NOW.