How Stress Affects Your Physique part 1

Table of Contents

What’s going on everyone.

I hope that you are all having a great day.

A few weeks ago I had posted a question on Facebook asking my friends what area of health they are struggling with the most.

And one that kept popping up was stress.

Coming in as one of my favorite topics to talk about (2nd only to poop), I thought this would be a great way to kick off the new site.

Over the next few posts you will learn:

  1. What exactly is stress. (part 1)
  2. Different kinds of stress. (part 1)
  3. The various branches of the nervous system (part 2)
  4. How your body reacts to stress (part 2)
  5. How stress affects fat loss and says to manage and handle stress more effectively. (part 3)

Stay tuned over the next week as I’ll break this topic down into digestible amounts so that you can get a better understanding of how this aspect of your life greatly affects the way your body looks.

However, before we can talk about how stress affects your physique, we must first understand what stress is.

In my own words, I’ve defined stress as:

Any sort of stimulus that creates a mental, physical, chemical, hormonal, emotional, spiritual or psychological reaction in the body.

If you think about that statement, “any sort of stimulus that creates a reaction in the body,” you’d be wise if you concluded that we are constantly under some sort of stress.

My point is that we are constantly processing stress, however, not all stress is bad.

Stress is a necessary part of our survival, a function that keeps our systems going.

To get a better understanding of this, I’ll show you what I mean below:

Chart of the types of stress by Sirena Bernal
Chart of the types of stress by Sirena Bernal

As you can see I have listed 6 different types of stress.

  1. Physical
  2. Chemical
  3. Electromagnetic
  4. Psychic or mental
  5. Nutritional
  6. Thermal

And as you may have noticed some of these forms of stress are necessary to our survival.

For instance, converting sunlight into Vitamin D is a form of chemical stress. (This process is helpful to us and necessary for optimal health, however, too much sunlight can be harmful.)

It’s important to understand this concept because all the stressors in our life add up.

Like a bucket overflowing with water, our body can only carry so much, good or bad.

Unfortunately, most of us are living with an abundance of stressors that are harmful to the body.

From my experience working with clients, the major sources of harmful stressors are coming from:

  • Working too much (long hours, sacrificing family and personal time for career aspirations.)
  • Not getting enough sleep or playtime (mainly from working too much.)
  • Postural stress (yep, from working too much.)
  • Eating empty foods
  • Addictions (sugar, caffeine, tobacco, recreational drug use, gambling, you name ’em.)
  • Conflicting values (what I believe in versus what everyone around me believes in)
  • Prescription drugs (birth control, anti-depressants, anti-anxiety, etc.)
  • Financial struggles
  • Religious or sexual orientation conflicts
Over time, these added (and most of them are unnecessary and self-inflicted) stressors begin to wear down on our body which ages us quicker, makes us flabbier, and less attractive.

The take home message for you to understand in this first post is that stress is:

Any sort of stimulus that creates a mental, physical, chemical, hormonal, emotional, spiritual or psychological reaction in the body.

We are constantly being bombarded with stressors in our life, both hurtful and harmful.

Our goal is to minimize the hurtful kind, so that our body can heal, repair and function at it’s peak.

In the next post, I will give you an overview of how our body reacts to stress and how it affects fat loss. i.e., how stress affects the way your body looks.

In the meantime, if you have any questions about this first part please leave them below in the comment section so that I can answer them for you.

Also, I’m curious, what areas of your life (looking at some of the examples above) are giving you the most stress?

Leave your answers below, I’d love to hear what they are.

Talk soon,


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