STRESS. It takes little to no effort to turn to your ranting, stressed out colleague, and tell them ‘don’t worry, be happy’. However, according to a new small study, it is vitally important to take Bob Marley’s advice and not dwell on stressful aspects of your life. Turns out, it could raise your body’s inflammation due to the rise of the C-reactive protein… which doesn’t sound too appealing…

The study recruited 34 healthy young women to participate in the project. Each woman was asked to give a speech about her candidacy for a job to two interviewers in white laboratory coats, who listened with stone-faced expressions, Peggy Zoccola said (an assistant professor of psychology at Ohio University).

Screen Shot 2015-08-26 at 3.40.59 PMHalf of the group was asked to contemplate their performance in the public speaking task, while the other half was asked to think about neutral images and activities, such as sailing ships.

The researchers drew blood samples that showed that the levels of C-reactive protein were significantly higher in the subjects who were asked to dwell on the speech, Zoccola reported.

For these participants, the levels of the inflammatory marker continued to rise for at least one hour after the speech. During the same time period, the marker returned to starting levels in the subjects who had been asked to focus on other thoughts.”

It is crucial to realize that your body can not perform at its highest potential when your mind is dwelling on stressful aspects of your life. According to Dr. Andrew Weil, “Inflammation is the cornerstone of the body’s healing response. It is the process by which the immune system delivers more nourishment and more defensive activity to an area that is injured or under attack. But inflammation is so powerful and so potentially destructive that it must stay where it is supposed to be and end when it is supposed to end; otherwise it damages the body and causes disease.



Intrigued? Keep reading about the C- reactive protein here.