Constantly stressed out people are more likely to develop brain illness

Saturday, February 22, 2014 by: J. D. Heyes
Tags: brain illness, mental stress, health effects

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) New research findings suggest that chronic stress over time creates changes in the brain, which might be helpful in explaining how long-term high stress levels can make sufferers more prone to mood disorders and anxiety later in life.

Daniela Kaufer, a UC Berkeley associate professor of integrative biology, and a team of colleagues found through a series of experiments on rats that chronic stress generates more myelin-producing cells and fewer neurons than normal. That resulted in an excess of myelin -- and as such, more white matter - in some areas of the brain, which then disrupted the delicate balance and timing of communication within the brain, The Times of India reported:

Kaufer's lab, which conducts research on the molecular and cellular effects of acute and chronic stress, focused in this study on neural stem cells in the hippocampus of the brains of adult rats. These stem cells were previously thought to mature only into neurons or a type of glial cell called an astrocyte.

The team has pheublisd its study in the journal Molecular Psychiatry.

What it all means

Dr. Joseph Shrand, MD, an Instructor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Medical Director of CASTLE (Clean and Sober Teens Living Empowered), a brand new intervention unit for at-risk teens that is part of the highly respected High Point Treatment Center in Brockton, Mass., explained the relevance of the UC-Berkeley findings in an email to Natural News:

"Our brain is made up of cells called neurons which conduct electrical charges as a means to communicate with each other. Imagine a balloon with a long string, but the string is actually part of the balloon itself. The balloon is the cell body from where the message is generated, and the string is called the axon along which the message travels. Like any piece of wire, electricity is going to travel faster from one end to the other if that piece of wire is insulated with a sheath of rubber. Neurons are no different, but the insulation is called myelin, a fatty substance that wraps around the axon of the neuron, that string part of the balloon, which increases the efficiency of sending messages from one neuron to the other. The folks at UC Berkeley find that some brain cells are more myelinated than others, implying that the signals they send get to the other cells faster than from cells with less myelin.

"The cells that seem to have more myelin are involved in memory and emotions. A person with such a communication system could theoretically be hypersensitive to stressors that another person may let just slide off their back."

In further evaluating the research and its implications, clinical psychologist Matt Poinsett told Natural News: "If you think of the brain as a series of electrical connections, stress appears to be impacting how well the wires are insulated and how they connect. That would change how quickly information travels around the brain and what path it would take."

'New strategies must be devised now'

In practical terms, then, licensed marriage and family therapist Laurel Weirs of Ledyard, Conn., said, "It seems everyone has a certain capacity for handling stress."

"What really bothers one person may not be a problem for another," she told me. "This is an important point. It's the amount of 'perceived stress' that will add to mental health issues."

Poinsett said a number of factors can affect the correlation between chronic stress and mental illness.

"Often, if a child is growing up in an extremely high stress environment, it may be indicative of parents that suffer from mental illness and/or have limited coping skills. Both of those factors - beyond any biological changes - can contribute to increased vulnerability to mental illness through genetics and skills deficits," he said.

Sonia Krishna, a medical director of behavioral health in south Los Angeles, said the new research may lead to changes in how professionals view chronic stress and its long-term physical and mental effects.

"New strategies must be devised now that we know their brains have fundamentally changed. The idea of a 'chemical imbalance' may really be a 'neuronal imbalance,'" she told me.


Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.

Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...


Now Available at

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...


Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...


Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at

Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source:

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.