Does stress affect blood cholesterol levels?


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Stress is a factor that affects many aspects of our life and health. According to recent observations, and numerous earlier studies, there is a close link between stressful lifestyle and high cholesterol levels in the blood.

how-does-stress-affect-the-cholesterol-levelsIn one study conducted in 2013, it was found the dependence of prolonged exposure to work stress and high cholesterol levels. This study used a questionnaire to assess the stress of work and lifestyle of 91.593 employees, who underwent periodic control examinations.

The authors of the survey according to the results argue that the chronic stress can increase levels of cortisol – a hormone of growth, which in excess increases the risk of obesity. It may also cause accumulation of fat around the stomach and increase appetite.

Another study in turn, which has been performed on a group of 2850 volunteers, suggests that people with severe anxiety and depression may have elevated levels of lipids (a group of chemicals which include cholesterol) and suffer from obesity. Anxiety disordersThis situation contributes to the inflammation and numerous problems with the heart and circulatory system due to jumps in blood pressure, caused cardiovascular reactivity in response to stressful situations. A similar effect it has on us smoking cigarettes.


Controlling stress is an individual matter of each of us. It depends on stress factors that affect a particular person and the reaction occurring in a given situation. High impact on the consequences of stress also has our previous experience.

The body, in response to stress, reacts immediately:

  • increases heart rate and breathing speed up,
  • raises blood pressure,
  • are released hormones adrenaline and noradrenaline,
  • increases heart rate, which in turn releases glucose into muscle and bone,
  • for the addition of energy are also used fatty acids, which can increase the level of cholesterol.probka_badania

Cholesterol increased under stress, may cause changes in the walls of arteries, which make them less flexible and less able to open in stressful situations.

Unfortunately, increased due to stress, blood cholesterol levels is not dependent on our lifestyle and diet which we use. The best solution in preventing the effects of stress is a healthy way of life, physical activity and avoidance of stress when possible. Can be helpful some relaxation techniques, which in emergencies can reduce the adverse effects of the accumulation of cholesterol in the blood.

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