Stress and Neurodegenerative Diseases
Offering body-mind techniques to help cope with stress may be particularly beneficial for clients who have chronic neurodegenerative diseases. Unmanaged stress is detrimental to the health of all people. However, new research suggests that for those with neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), stress may have an even greater negative impact, causing their disease to worsen.
“People exposed to chronic social conflict experience high levels of stress and consequent dysregulation of the immune system, thereby increasing vulnerability to infection and autoimmune disease,” said Mary Meagher, PhD, lead researcher of a study presented at the American Pyschological Association’s 2007 annual convention in San Francisco. “The cytokine response during chronic stress appears to play a key role in exacerbating the acute central nervous system infection and the development of subsequent autoimmune responses.”
Researchers at Texas A&M University conducted a series of experiments on mice, infecting them with a virus that triggered an MS-like illness and subjecting them to stressful circumstances. Researchers found that the stressful events elevated levels of inflammatory cytokines, increasing the severity of the disease. In another experiment, scientists administered antibody treatments to the mice to neutralize the effect of the cytokines. These mice did not experience a worsening of their infection or related disease symptoms when exposed to the stressors.
According to these researchers, human studies have shown that stress leads to a similar increase in cytokine levels in people with already assaulted immune systems. The successful antibody treatment in the mice may have implications for humans. Meagher said, “It is possible that the adverse effects of social conflict on people who are vulnerable to certain inflammatory diseases may be prevented or reversed by treatments aimed at blocking increases in this cytokine. Recent evidence suggests that some potential interventions include certain anti-inflammatory drugs, exercise, antidepressant medication, omega-3 fatty acids and mindfulness relaxation training.”
Source: The American Psychological Association, www.apa.org.
This research underscores the importance of staying current with educational advancements in the field. The more you refine your expertise, the better able you are to help others connect with wellness on multiple levels. Make the Inner IDEA Conference® 2008 an integral part of your strategy. Located in Palm Springs, California, September 11-14, 2008, this invitation to transformation will be rich in program diversity, offering you the opportunity to explore many different types of education alternatives.
Visit www.inneridea.com/conference/inner-idea-conference-2008 to re-live highlights from the event and learn how to register.
For the latest research, statistics, sample classes, and more, "Like" IDEA on Facebook here.
© 2015 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.
IDEA Newsletter Sign-up
|Extreme Interval Training
In this course you'll learn goal-focused intervals and over 50 dynamic exercises and drills to create extensive and intensive training formats.
|Cut to the Core
This is a raw, unedited video filmed live at the 2009 IDEA World Fitness Convention™. Cut to the Core is packed full of core-focused exercises that aim to improve the way you look, feel and live.
|September 2011 IDEA Fitness Journal Quiz 4: Plyometric Training
This continuing education quiz is an in-depth look at plyometric training. Plyometric exercises—jumping, bounding, hopping, arm pushing, and catching and throwing weighted objects such as machine balls—are movements that involve rapid eccentric and concentric muscle actions.