Stress and our body: hydroxytyrosol advantages

Stress causes a loss of homeostasis, that is, of the balance of our organism. It causes the release of a hormone called adrenaline that affects our nervous system. In fact, that makes us feel nervous and stressed, among others. Our hands sweat and when we breathe, more oxygen enters us at a faster rate, accelerating our heart rate. Another substance known as cortisol is released by raising glucose to provide more energy to the body. An excessive release of these hormones and neurotransmitters causes collateral damage to our body.

This situation can become chronic, causing our body to be continuously over-activated, causing cell exhaustion, which causes a loss of defensive capacity in some areas of the body, in addition to slowing down the ability to repair tissues due to a greater weakness of our immune system, which is more exposed to other problems derived from excess oxidation, inflammation and infections.

These situations occur with frequency. Work, unemployment, depression, anxiety, psychological aspects of lifestyle, etc. they cause this imbalance and lead us to get sick or increase the risk levels of various pathologies. Microorganisms take advantage of their opportunity and spread through our body when they find less resistance.

Another organ that suffers a lot is the heart and our cardiovascular system. The endothelial function becomes unbalanced and there is no longer a correct functioning, triggering blood pressure which makes the arterial walls suffer as a mechanical consequence and due to a lack of release of the appropriate molecules to restore balance. This causes the lipids in the blood to precipitate on the arterial walls and hence the oxidation and inflammation process taking place.

Our nervous system is also affected. Sustained stress depletes dopamine reserves and this is not controlled, driving to the appearance of depressive symptoms.

Cells use 90% of their energy to renew and repair tissues. But stress leaves these functions in the background, and that is why stressed people age more and do so sooner, leading to premature aging.

During this process molecules known as free radicals are generated. They are molecules that contain oxygen and have one or more unpaired electrons. The molecule then captures an electron from another molecule to seek its stability.

Free radicals are generated by the body to defend itself against pathogens, but in excess they are very dangerous, damaging the cells of your body (DNA). Our body has antioxidant defenses that can neutralize them before they can cause cell damage, but in situations of excess that coincide with high stress, it represents a significant risk.

The wide variety of hydroxytyrosol (HT) biological activities was associated with its strong antioxidant activity. HT acts as free radical-scavenger and metal-chelator. The high antioxidant effciency of HT is attributed to the presence of the o-dihydroxyphenyl moiety. It mainly acts as chain breaker by donating a hydrogen atom to peroxyl-radicals (ROO). In this way fairly reactive ROO* is replaced with HT radical, unreactive due to the presence of intramolecular hydrogen bond in the phenoxy radical.

However, it has been proposed that HT may confer additional antioxidant protection by increasing the endogenous defense systems against an oxidative stress, by activating different cellular

signaling pathways HT possesses significant anti-inflammatory activity. In vitro and in vivo evidence show the attenuation of pro-inflammatory agents inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS), cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), tumor necrosis factor (TNF-alpha) and interleukin (IL)-1 expression, inhibition of granulocytes and monocytes activation by HT.

Don’t let stress be with you. Fight to avoid it.

Eat a healthy and balanced diet, practise moderate exercise.

Supplement your diet with antioxidants and natural anti-inflammatory agents in moderate doses.

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