A new study has revealed that high levels of stress raise blood pressure and increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, according to research published in the journal Science. Circulation, Journal of the American Heart Association, When the stress hormone cortisol continues to increase over time, you are more likely to have a stroke, heart attack, or heart disease.
According to the site CNN American cardiologist Dr. Glenn Levine, professor of medicine at Baylor College of American Medicine, who was not involved in the study, said during his presidency of the American Heart Association scientific conference on the relationship between mental health and heart disease: “Stress, depression, frustration, anger, and a negative outlook on life not only make us unhappy, but It negatively affects our health and longevity.”
“We looked at all the data we could find and concluded that negative mental health factors such as stress are clearly associated with many cardiovascular risk factors,” Levine said.
The study revealed that high levels of stress hormones are associated with high blood pressure and an increased risk of heart attack and stroke in people with normal blood pressure.
She explained that because the mind, heart, and body are interconnected, a person can improve cardiovascular health by seeking a positive psychological outlook.
Stress management expert Dr. Cynthia Ackerel, Editor-in-Chief of Contentment“We should not discount our ability to play a role in our well-being and mental health,” issued by the American Institute on Stress.
In the study, scientists looked at 412 adults aged 48 to 87 with normal blood pressure. They measured urine levels of stress hormones at several time points between 2005 and 2018. The hormone levels were then compared to any cardiovascular events that might have occurred, such as high blood pressure and pain. Heart and heart attacks.
Study author Dr Kosuke Inoue, associate professor of social epidemiology in Kyoto, Japan, said: ‘Previous research has focused on the relationship between stress hormone levels and high blood pressure or cardiovascular events in patients with current high blood pressure. It’s looking at adults who don’t have high blood pressure at all.”
The study tested three hormones – norepinephrine, epinephrine and dopamine – that are responsible for regulating the autonomic nervous system and control involuntary bodily functions such as heart rate, blood pressure and breathing.
Inoue and his team also studied levels of cortisol, a hormone that the body produces in response to acute stress and reduces the body’s production of cortisol – but if a person is under constant stress, cortisol levels can remain high.
“Norepinephrine, epinephrine, dopamine, and cortisol can increase with stress from life events, work, relationships, finances, and more,” Inoue said.
The study found that doubling levels of cortisol alone – but not norepinephrine, epinephrine or dopamine – was associated with a 90% increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
Each time the combined levels of the four stress hormones doubled, the risk of developing high blood pressure rose between 21% and 31%. The effect was most pronounced in people under the age of 60, a worrying finding, according to the researchers.