Why Stress Really Matters

When I was training to be a natural therapist, my herbal medicine tutor gave me the most important thought for my future career.

When she was combining a herbal mixture, she said: “I always add something for the nervous system”.

After many years in practice and many of you coming to my clinic, I really know why the nervous system is so important. We (that is, all doctors, specialists and therapists) need to consider the person sitting in front of us and the emotions involved in their illness.

I have explained why stress really matters to over 80% of my clients, with digestive issues, pain, recurring undiagnosable issues etc… the list really is unending, as are the variety of illnesses you bring to me.

“I don’t get stressed,” some may tell me.

Yes you do! We all do, every time we miss the bus, lose our keys (or the car in the carpark – my favourite) or hit a red light. Now none of these were around in the Stone Age when we needed a stress response to keep us alive. However, it’s still in use: the fight or flight response.

We have all heard that expression, but what does it mean to our bodies? Let me tell you what I tell my visitors, about “Tiger Moments”.

Imagine, if you can, all those eons ago…

(c) Can Stock Photo / VACYou’re out walking, hunting and gathering, when a sabre-tooth tiger jumps out of the trees. Time for that fight or flight response I mentioned above. It’s our survival mechanism.

Your system has to immediately prime your whole body to wrestle the tiger to the ground or sprint to safety. Your body is programmed to produce chemicals that begin the stress response, which in the body is responsible for the following:

  • the heart pounds
  • blood pressure increases to get blood flowing to the core muscles, arms and legs for fight or flight
  • the kidney helps this by holding onto sodium, hence its relationship to high blood pressure, and at the same time excretes magnesium
  • various systems such as the digestive system, hormone system and urinary system all go on standby, with no attention until you return to the cave and your body gets rid of those stress chemicals.

Do not let anyone tell you stress doesn’t matter!

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