Stress week is a series of reports on stress and its impact on health and quality of life. Click the screen-shot image on the right to go the video segment from Tuesday on the physical impact of stress. A written summary on the topic, separate from the video content, is posted here.
In that summary, Dr. Maria Shapiro provides detail on stress and immune function:
“It is known that stress has an impact on our immune function. It can decrease our immune system and cause a decrease in what is called our natural killer cells. It also can cause a decrease in our immune peptides. These kinds of changes can explain why you are more likely to get sick when you feel stressed. There is a decrease in IgA- that is an immunoglobulin that fights infection as well. It has been said that there is a two fold increase in upper respiratory tract infections when stress is present.”
This just provides more science-based illustration that chronic stress can really mess up immune system performance, contributing to a host of physical problems. Immune balancing is one way to fight back against stress when it stresses your immune function.