It’s no secret that stress is bad for your health.
Everybody knows that “life stress events” — things like loss of a job, death of a loved one and getting divorced (or married) raise the risk of getting sick.
All sorts of other life events also generate stress, with possible negative health effects ranging from catching a cold to major depression to a fatal heart attack.
Of course, knowing about the link between stress and sickness just gives you something else to worry about, adding even more stress. If you value your health, perhaps you should stop reading now.
On second thought, don’t. Much of the lore about stressful events impairing health is certainly true, but some research is reassuring. There are some secrets about the stress-disease connection that aren’t all bad.
If you’ve read the psychological, psychiatric and medical scientific literature over the last several decades, you might already be aware of these “secrets.” If not, they’ve been nicely summarized in a paper to appear in the next issue of Annual Review of Psychology, in which Sheldon Cohen, Michael L.M. Murphy and Aric A. Prather analyze (in no particular order) what they call the “Ten surprising facts about stressful life events and disease risk.”