• Worry More, Live Longer

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    Next
    time the anxiety induced by another gloomy bank balance or the threat
    of yet more redundancies in your office convinces you that the recession
    should come with a government health warning, think again.

    Dr Marios Kyriazis,
    a GP and expert in geriatric medicine, is among a growing number
    of health professionals claiming that stress isn’t the one-way road
    to illness and an early grave that most of us assume. In fact, provided
    it’s relatively short-term, it appears that stress can do wonders
    for the immune system and ageing process, not to mention keeping
    the likes of Alzheimer’s, arthritis and certain cancers at bay.

    "We tend
    to blame stress for everything from exhaustion to bad moods to heart
    disease, but it’s all a myth. Far from being bad for you, stress
    is vital for survival. I advise people to seek out stress because
    it can make you live longer. I actually think the recession –
    even if it means losing your job – will, for many people, be
    good for their health. It’s people who have routine, uncomplicated,
    unchallenging lives that tend to be harder hit by ill-health,"
    explains Kyriazis, who is president of the British Longevity Society
    and author of the book Anti-Ageing
    Medicines
    (Watkins).

    It’s the degree
    of stress that is crucial. "There’s a lot of research and it
    all points to mild and moderate stress working in the body’s favour
    by increasing the production of regenerative proteins that nourish
    brain cells, enabling them to function at peak capacity. These cells
    reinforce the neural connections and physical repair pathways that
    usually deteriorate with age," he says.

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    the rest of the article

    April
    18, 2009

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