Stress Archive


The heartfelt benefits of pet ownership

Having a dog or another pet appears to lower the risk of high blood pressure and improve blood pressure control. Pet ownership may foster positive feelings (such as decreased stress) and habits (such as daily walks) that may improve heart health. People who own dogs walk about 20 minutes more per day on average than those without dogs. Pets can help combat loneliness and social isolation, which have been linked to a higher risk of heart attack, stroke, or death from these causes.

Taking it slow

While an active life is a healthier one, there are times when people can benefit from embracing a slower pace, an approach commonly known as "slow living." Slow living isn't about doing less, but doing more with greater focus and purpose and at the right speed. The approach can help people lower stress, increase concentration and memory, and become more engaged in activities they enjoy.

Winterize your heart health

To protect the heart during the winter, it's important to take certain precautions. Steps include staying up to date on flu and COVID-19 vaccinations, avoiding cold remedies that can raise heart rate and blood pressure, figuring out where and how to exercise indoors if it's too cold to exercise outside, developing a regular practice of stress management (such as practicing yoga and getting enough sleep), and avoiding overindulgence when it comes to drinking alcohol or eating holiday foods.

Natural ways to boost energy

As men age, many factors affect their energy levels, such as declining muscle mass, unhealthy diet, poor sleep, and increased stress. Addressing these areas are some of the best ways to increase energy levels. Exercise, healthy eating, good sleep, and stress reduction can increase mood-boosting hormones, help the body produce more adenosine triphosphate (the energy-carrying molecules found in cells), and balance blood sugar levels to prevent sudden fatigue, among other benefits.

Atrial fibrillation after surgery: Common and undertreated?

After surgery unrelated to the heart, a diagnosis of atrial fibrillation (afib) may be more common than previously thought. These cases, which may constitute 13% of new afib diagnoses, appear to be undertreated.

3 simple swaps for better heart health

A busy schedule can make it challenging to adhere to heart-healthy habits, but there are steps you can take that don't require much time and can fit easily into almost anyone's life.

Beyond hot flashes

Around menopause, a decline in estrogen can trigger low-grade inflammation that leads to unexpected symptoms from head to toe. Symptoms can affect the digestive tract, skin, joints, eyes, ears, and heart, among other areas. A 2022 study found that estrogen loss can even fuel the jaw pain known as temporomandibular disorder. A year or longer can pass before many women connect symptoms with menopause. Women can take lifestyle measures to lower inflammation, such as eating more fruits and vegetables, avoiding processed foods, and exercising.

Punch up your fitness

Non-contact boxing has been shown to help many people with Parkinson's disease improve their balance, hand-eye coordination, mental focus, muscle strength, and body rhythm. Older adults also can benefit from this type of exercise, as they face many of the same physical and mental challenges as they age. Most boxing fitness workouts are done using punching bags and hitting oversized boxing mitts worn by coaches. The moves involve punches and sequences based on crosses, hooks, uppercuts, and jabs.

Getting stuck in long-term grief

In March 2022, the American Psychiatric Association added "prolonged grief disorder" to its official list of diagnoses. The diagnosis applies to bereaved adults who continue to experience intense grief more than a year after the death of a loved one. Someone with prolonged grief has a daily yearning for the loved one or is preoccupied with thoughts of the loved one to the point that it interferes with daily life. The diagnosis also requires additional symptoms, such as difficulty re-engaging in life or emotional numbness. The condition can be treated, and healing is possible.

Could anger and depression raise the risk of afib?

Psychological issues such as anger, anxiety, depression, and work stress are associated with a greater likelihood of the heart rhythm disorder known as atrial fibrillation, according to a 2022 study.

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