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Aging Health Mental Health

STRESS: Your Perspective on Life Ages You Faster

There are many things that will affect your body in the environment.

Some things will cause you to age faster than others, like sunlight. Being in direct sunlight will age your skin rapidly, making you appear older than you really are.

But some internal factors can also cause you to age fast!

Besides external factors like sunlight, researchers have known for some time that various internal factors can also cause faster aging.

One of them is your perspective on life, like how you look at things and events around you.

Your perspective – or mindset – can also affect how fast you age. 

Your perspective relates to how you think about the things in your life. It is part of your personality and it is often influenced by your experiences. 

How you see things and your reaction to them, for instance, can cause you to become stressed. If you typically look at circumstances and life events negatively, some of your hormones – cortisol in particular – will cause you to age faster. It is especially true if you have chronic stress and do not find ways to relieve stress.

When chronic stress is present, premature aging starts to appear in your skin.

You may see wrinkles, a loss of skin tone, and age spots. You may also develop sunken cheeks.

Does Stress Cause Wrinkles? Yes, It Can Speed up Skin Aging

Cortisol can make you look older and cause physical symptoms of stress. The hormone blocks two substances you need to keep your skin looking young and healthy: collagen and hyaluronan synthase. 

When the harmful effects of stress are combined with other factors – it will age you even faster. Things like smoking, drinking a lot of alcohol, not getting enough sleep, too much exposure to the sun, and eating an unhealthy diet – all contribute to faster aging.

Studies indicate that when you have a positive perspective on life, and do not see yourself as old – but younger than you are – you are apt to be healthier than those with a negative outlook on life.

Another finding is that loneliness also leads to increased cortisol levels because of a feeling of stress. People with more stress have more inflammation in their bodies, which weakens their immune systems.

A weaker immune system means you become more susceptible to various diseases – which can shorten your life. 

Loneliness produces a higher risk for many serious illnesses – physical and mental. It is considered a serious health risk and can lead to anxiety, depression, and substance abuse.

Another problem with premature aging is that your telomeres get shorter faster.

Telomeres are end caps on your DNA. Scientists believe there is a connection between their length and how long you will live.

They get shorter each time a cell divides, but a hormone called telomerase helps retain their length. Cortisol reduces the production of telomerase, which ages your skin faster.

Stress management is necessary for better health and longevity. One of the best ways to reduce stress is to get in a regular exercise program. You can do this on your own or join an exercise class. You will see the best results if you perform moderate exercise for 150 minutes per week.

If you tend to have a negative view of life, work on developing a more positive perspective.

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