Perceived Stress Affects DHEA-S, Health and Aging

by Shirley Archer, JD, MA on Dec 12, 2013

Mind-Body-Spirit News

Now is a good time to remind your clients that effective stress manage- ment is an integral part of an overall wellness-lifestyle strategy.

New research has shown that long-term mental and emotional stress adversely affects DHEA-S levels, increasing the risk of disease and accelerating aging. DHEA and DHEA-S are precursor hormones to sex hormones, and high levels are associated with good health and well-being.

Scientists from the Institute of Stress Medicine and the University of Gothenburg, both in Gothenburg, Sweden, recruited healthy adult men and women aged 25–50 for the study. Forty-one subjects reported being stressed at work, and 40 reported that their work was stress- free. The investigators compared participants’ serum levels of DHEA and DHEA-S and found that mean levels of DHEA-S were 23% lower in members of the stressed group.

Study authors noted that in stressed individuals DHEA-S levels resembled those typical of older adults, rather than of their own age group. Other research supports stress-management activities as a way to boost DHEA levels. More research is warranted.

The study appeared in PLoS ONE (2013; 8 [8], e72460; doi: 10.1371/ journal.pone.0072460).

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About the Author

Shirley Archer, JD, MA

Shirley Archer, JD, MA IDEA Author/Presenter

Shirley Archer, JD, MA, was the 2008 IDEA Fitness Instructor of the Year and is IDEA’s mind-body-spirit spokesperson. She is a certified yoga and Pilates teacher and an award-winning author base...