Dec 1, 2009

The Impact of Stress on Our Health

More than half of all cases of heart disease are not related to the common risk factors of high cholesterol, smoking, or inactivity. (Integration of Physiology and Behavioral Scienc)

In a Mayo Clinic study of people with heart disease, emotional stress was the strongest single predictor of further problems, such as heart attack or cardiac arrest (Mayo Clinic Proceedings)

Three separate studies have shown that stress is more closely related to heart disease and to cancer than smoking is. (British Journal of Medical Psychology)

A study conducted at Harvard showed that men who experience elevated chronic anxiety are six times more likely than contented men to die from a sudden heart attack. (Circulation)

Living with the principles of Shaar Ha'Bitachon is not only a spiritual accomplishment; it has a tremendous effect on our physical health.

In R' Bachya ibn Pekuda's Chovos Ha'Levavos, shaar ha'bitachon, he writes:

If we knew we had a friend who:

1) never ceases worrying about us

2) is able to fulfill our wishes

3) knows our exact needs and what is good for us

4) controls all the people and powers in the world and does not allow any of them to harm or benefit us without his consent

5) is overflowing with kindness and compassion even if we are undeserving

we would totally relax and stop worrying about ANYTHING.

Hashem is merciful and gracious; He neither slumbers nor sleeps, He is your Father, He made you, Hashem is good to all and His mercy is on all His creations etc.

1 comment:

  1. I think that what we worry most about is not about what Hashem will do to us such as strike us with lightning but the consequences of our own actions. For example, if I spend money on something now, will I have enough to last the rest of the month? If I choose this doctor, will he be the one to miss the diagnosis? Of course Hashem can cause me to find a new source of money or make the doctor of my choice the shaliach for refua but we are expected to try our best to succeed at life and make intelligent decisions. Thus, the worry is about how smart we are.