Stress and Digestion: A Tug of War You Don’t Know about

Stress is your body’s way to say that it cannot handle more of whatever is happening around you. It’s a code red of sorts. If your body was a super-secret laboratory (which it is, because we still haven’t figured out a lot of things), then the stress call would be a wobbling and screaming red bulb.

And if you have ever seen spy or sci-fi movies, you know what happens right after that, don’t you? The doctors flee, the soldiers take guard, bunker doors are closed, and the rest are evacuated. While all of this might look cool in a movie, it’s not that great (at least considering the consequences) when it happens inside your body. Solving gut problems with assistance from the best gastroenterologist in Durham is not going to be much of a problem if you research a bit and find the best one.

What happens when you are stressed?

A lot of things happen simultaneously. For starters, your central nervous system is alarmed and evokes a ‘flight or fight’ response. Immediately, blood flow is redirected from your digestive tract to your brain and muscles. Doesn’t sound that bad, right?

It is. While the rest of your body is having a sort of bloody honeymoon, your stomach acidity is increasing, your liver is going on standby mode, and the food you have just eaten is undigested. If this was not enough, in extreme cases, the pH level of your GI tract can become more acidic, and your esophagus might go into involuntary convulsions.

But that’s still okay, as long as you are alive – so, here’s the most embarrassing of the lot. You might suddenly feel the need for a bowel session, and that’s worse than death sometimes, to be honest.
What’s your way out?

Well, we could just say that don’t stress. The blog would be short, and you would not find an answer to your problem. But we aren’t going to do that (thank us later); instead we are going to let you in on somethings that might help you take control of the situation. Let’s take a look –

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1.Moderate exercise does a good job

Exercise keeps your blood circulation steady, works on your metabolism, and decreases your ability to stress on every little thing. You don’t have to spend an hour and half at the gym (unless you want to), just a 20 – 30 minutes’ walk everyday should do a good enough trick.

2.Relaxation therapy

If you haven’t noticed yet, stress is surprisingly recurring. This means that it keeps happening, sometimes even with the little things. To get out of the vicious cycle, you need to relax, and three deep breaths might not be enough.

For starters you can get into yoga – this gives your body and mind the kind of stability you need. You can also take nature walks. Studies have found that people who walk amongst flora have less instances of high blood pressure or frequent cortisol release. Also, it’s an enjoyable thing to do, and you tend to see the often unnoticed beauty happening all around you.

3.Give yourself some time off from your gadgets

Gadgets are good – they are a necessity. But, if they start taking over your life, then it’s a problem. Make a thumb rule – something like no touching the phone or laptop for the first hour after you wake up or the last hour before you go to sleep.

Also, when it comes to social media, make sure you only use it when you have some action to perform. Don’t keep scrolling down your feed, whenever you have free time. According to research and a TIME article, social media has been linked with ‘fear of missing out’, sleep quality, lack of self-confidence, body image issues, and the likes. Now we are not saying that it’s entirely bad – but, it’s only as good as you can handle.

However, if you are already suffering from stress induced gut related problems, then now is a good time to get in touch with gastroenterology doctors in Durham.



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