If you follow an anti-aging regimen consisting of soaps, creams and other skin care cosmetics then you might want to prevent stress as well, if you want to slow down the signs of getting older. It’s a fact that stress is an unavoidable part of our lives. However, if you are constantly in a state of anxiety, you could be speeding up the process of aging. Find out how stress is related to aging and how stress relief can have anti-aging benefits.
Stress and Aging
The link between stress and aging can be better understood by studying the effect of stress on telomeres. Telomeres are the cap-shaped parts of a chromosome. Both the telomeres’ length and life span decrease each time the cell divides itself. When the telomeres reach a size that is too short, the cell also loses its ability to divide. Hence, the cells are unable to replenish and replace themselves. In a study conducted by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, results showed that stress can shorten the life span of the telomeres. In fact, the results of the study showed that high amounts of stress can speed up the aging of telomeres by as much as ten years.
If you find this hard to believe, think of a time in your life when you experienced high levels of stress, perhaps a time when a loved one died or you got laid off from a job. Remember how you looked in the mirror and noticed how it seemed you aged rapidly in just a span of a few days or weeks? Even though more studies are being conducted, it’s clear that stress hormones can contribute to the aging of the body.
Stress Relief Tips to Slow Down Aging
Now that you know how stress is directly linked to aging, you can help preserve your youthful looks and prolong your lifespan by learning to manage stress. One good way to battle stress is to have a positive outlook in life. Negative emotions can put a lot of stress on your body. When you have an optimistic personality, not only do your inner systems function better, but you are also more able to deal with the problems that come along.
According to the American Psychological Association, having healthy relationships with your family and friends can also lower levels of stress. When you have loved ones that offer you love, support and companionship, you instantly feel better about matters that would stress you out otherwise. Elder people in particular can greatly benefit from social relationships. Senior citizens who have social support are not only able to live longer, but their risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease is also lower.
If you lead a hectic lifestyle then you might also want to practice meditation to keep your stress levels in check. Meditation helps block cortisol, the hormone produced by your body when you’re under stress. Meditation also promotes the production of melatonin in your system. Melatonin is an antioxidant and hormone that helps you become relaxed and calm.