New research has revealed the effect stress is having on our brain health. Potter’s Herbals has found that nearly all of us – 92 per cent – suffer from stress. In addition, a third of people admitted simply saying they are fine when really, they are overwhelmed by stress. Furthermore, the survey of more than 1,100 adults across the UK revealed that more than half of people suffer in silence, seeking no effective help to tackle or reduce their stress burden. Mental health issues were clearly identified as signs of stress by the Potter’s Herbals investigation as more than half (57 per cent) said they had less patience when stressed, 54 per cent were short tempered and 42 per cent said they found things harder to understand and tasks harder to complete.
Dr Chris Etheridge, a medical herbalist, practitioner and advisor to Potter’s, advised: “Anyone can be affected by stress. Money is the single biggest source of stress with work and relationships also being key factors. Whilst stress in short bursts helps us to get tasks completed, chronic stress over the longer-term impacts both our physical and mental health.”
“Stress and the hormones released during stressful experiences influence a wide range of cognitive functions, including learning and memory processes. Exposure to high or very high stress – acutely or chronically – impairs some types of memory and ability to reason whilst improving the ability to complete well-rehearsed tasks.”
Dr Etheridge advised that there are ways we can tackle stress, with exercise, work and lifestyle changes, better relationships and a healthy diet being helpful, in addition to certain herbal remedies, including gingko biloba and panax ginseng.