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Chronic stress links to the six leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, accidents, cirrhosis of the liver and suicide. More than 75 percent of all physician office visits come from stress-related ailments and complaints. The dangers of stress make the holiday season a time for concern for those weighed down by health concerns. The global pandemic compounds holiday stress in 2020. Chiropractors play one of the most important roles in modern healthcare by providing advice, care, and recommendations that mitigate risk factors for stress-related disorders.

A worrisome relationship occurs between the holiday season and heart attacks for both men and women. According to a study from the Journal of Circulation, “The number of cardiac deaths is higher on December 25 than on any other day of the year, second highest on December 26, and third highest on January 1.” The reasoning makes sense.

December brings about increased stress levels in many people. An increased risk of heart attacks stems from the added pressure of buying gifts, financial strains, and increased consumption of sugar, salt, and alcohol. Isolation and lockdowns add to the list of concerns. Of course most people do not suffer heart attacks during the holidays, yet research simply shows that stress levels increase in December and early January compared to any other part of the year.

The best plan involves a great offense. Being on the offense includes adding health strategies that limit the impact of stress over time. Limiting alcohol consumption and moderating sugar intake is always smart, while still allowing an occasional time and place to indulge. The key to not allowing the stress to take over involves improving the body’s resilience.

Chiropractors take a unique approach to health, disease, and stress. Other professions advocate for changing the environment to suit a weakened body. Chiropractic focuses on strengthening the body to suit the environment. 

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