Daily fix

December 8, 2016

Low levels of racial prejudice is associated with low stress response

A study conducted by researchers at Harvard University, the University of California, and the University of Boston suggests that having an egalitarian attitude (i.e. believing in the principle that all people are equal and deserve equal rights and opportunities) might be good for our health.

May 10, 2016

Measuring cortisol in hair to detect children at risk 

According to a study conducted by researchers at the University of Melbourne in Australia, the concentration of cortisol (an important stress hormone) in hair is associated with exposure to an adverse environment in children.

April 7, 2016

Glass half empty or half full? The answer could be related to stress reactivity in aging

A study from the University of Valencia in Spain recently tested how optimism and pessimism are related to the physiological stress response of a stressful situation, and to how this situation is perceived.

February 23, 2016

I’m stressed out, I have pimples!

A study conducted by researchers at the School of Medicine of Wake Forest in North Carolina suggests that a person’s perceived level of stress is linked to the severity of their acne.

December 2, 2015

Can coloring reduce anxiety?

Coloring books have dramatically gained popularity in adults in the past months, an effect possibly due to the addition of the words "anti-stress" to their front page. Although any technique labeled "anti-stress" should be taken with a grain of salt, this trend seems to show positive effects on anxiety regulation.

November 2, 2015

ADHD: Lack of attention is stressful!

A recent study conducted by researchers from Tel Hai College in Israel showed that individuals with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) presented higher levels of anxiety, a lower performance score and a higher level of cortisol when they were confronted to a stressful test.

September 8, 2015

Stress mindset: a fierce enemy or a valuable ally?

A study conducted at Yale university shows that stress mindsets might influence psychological health and work performance.

August 3, 2015

Chewing gum to relieve stress?

A group of Japanese researchers have shown that chewing gum for over 10 minutes can reduce stress, adding to a growing body of science linking gum chewing to relieve stress.

July 6, 2015

Stress: an obstacle to empathy

Several studies show that people are less empathetic towards strangers than they are towards people from their entourage or relatives.

June 4, 2015

Napping could have a beneficial effect on stress markers after sleep deprivation

Two short naps, each lasting 30 minutes, can have a beneficial effect on specific markers of stress and immune system responses after sleep deprivation the previous night.

May 4, 2015

A “safe” transition to high school

A child's presence of an attachment bond their mother would facilitate the transition from elementary school to high school.

March 10, 2015

Checking e-mails less frequently reduces daily stress

E-mails have become an indispensable method of communication, whether it be for professional, academic or personal purposes. A recent study published by University of British Columbia researchers suggests that limiting the frequency of e-mail consultation reduces daily stress.

February 9, 2015

The dog: man’s best friend?

A research conducted by researchers at Pennsylvania State University showed that presence of a dog during a psychosocial stress task reduces stress levels and heart rate.

December 17, 2014

Vitamin C and its effects on stress

A German study conducted in 2001 has been inspired by several animal studies showcasing the effect of ascorbic acid, better known as vitamin C, on stress reactivity. In fact, these studies found that ascorbic acid supplements reduced cortisol secretion in different laboratory animals, such as chicks, chicken and common carp.

November 20, 2014

Psychological stress induce hair loss

A German study from the Universities of Hambourg and Humbolt showed that psychological stress alters the normal cycle of hair growth.

October 22, 2014

Grab your microphones! Sing to reduce your stress

According to a study conducted in 2004 at the Goethe University in Germany, singing out loud in a choir could be more beneficial for your immune system - the capability to fight bacterial and viral infections - than simply listening to a piece of music.

September 25, 2014

Home: A less stressful environment?

At the end of the 90s, Arlie Hochschild hypothesized that people are more stressed at home than at work. Recently, researchers form Pennsylvannia State University have attempted to validate this hypothesis

July 9, 2014

Stress affects semen quality

According to an American study published in 2014, stress experienced by men was shown to negatively affect their sperm quality.

June 9, 2014

She has her way, he has his: Explaining why women and men react to stress differently

Under conditions of social conflict, stress will change how people behave and how conflict is resolved. To assess this, Tomova and her colleagues measured how self-other distinction behaviors are modified by a stress response. These behaviors represent the ability to distinguish self-related mental representations from others' and play an important role in social interactions.

May 13, 2014

Quitting smoking is linked to improved mental health

According to research conducted at the Universities of Birmingham, Oxford, and Kings College London, the impact of quitting smoking was found to be associated with a significant improvement in mental health, equal to or larger than the effect from a course of antidepressants.

April 7, 2014

Can stress cause migraines?

When you feel stressed, do you sometimes experience unbearable headaches? What is the cause of this phenomenon? Is it possible that the hormones we secrete in stressful situations induce migraines?

March 4, 2014

Hair, a new way to predict the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases ?

In 2013, Dutch researchers conducted a study on the impact of chronic stress and the development of cardiovascular diseases.

January 16, 2014

An interesting link between cortisol levels at bedtime and anxiety

Cognitive theories of anxiety suggest that anxious individuals tend to interpret neutral stimuli in their environment as threatening, more easily than “normal” individuals. In fact, they have an attentional bias towards threat. Even though there are many data to support this hypothesis, the physiological basis for this bias is still unclear.

November 5, 2013

Worker stress differs among the sexes

The sexes are not equal…when it comes to workplace stress! Beyond sex, how old someone is and standing in the hierarchy – or what we call occupational status representing prestige, education, and income of that job – will also interact and influence the mental and physical health of workers.

September 5, 2013

Music's surprising effect on your stress

A number of studies have found that listening to music during or after a stressful event or day reduces the stress response. However, is it also the case if one is listening to relaxing music before being exposed to a stressor?

July 15, 2013

Hormones levels could help explain psychological disorders in women

According to research conducted at the University College London, women at a certain phase in their menstrual cycle could be more vulnerable to some of the psychological side-effects linked with stressful experiences.

June 3, 2013

Active children are less responsive to stress

Children who engage in regular physical activity (PA) enjoy better physical and mental health. However, the underlying reasons for these observations are unknown. A group of researchers from Finland were interested in studying whether PA has a positive impact on the stress system and stress hormone levels.

May 3, 2013

Being mindful of the present is de-stressing

New research by Kirk Brown and colleagues from Virginia Commonwealth University reveal that trait mindfulness – a person’s ability to focus their attention on the present – is related to lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol in response to a stressor as well as lower indices of anxiety and feelings of negativity.

February 27, 2013

Loneliness: A chronic stressor?

A couple of months ago, researchers from Ohio State University in the United States sought to examine if the feeling of loneliness can affect the immune system in healthy subjects.

January 17, 2013

School bullying and PTSD symptoms

Researchers from Norway examined whether there is a link between Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and school bullying.

December 12, 2012

I’m stressed! Should I head to the park?

Green space in residential settings is associated with various factors related to physical and mental health. These include better general health, mood, and attention capacities, as well as reduced anxiety, aggression and crime.

November 7, 2012

Working overtime? Well so are your stress hormones!

Researchers from Montreal examined whether the number of work hours per week would be related to differences in stress hormone levels during workdays and weekends.

July 15, 2012

Children with a depressed parent, a risk factor for future deficits?

Heidemarie K. Laurent, an American researcher from the University of Wyoming, working with American and British colleagues, recently showed a link between a parent's depressive symptoms and the stress response of his/her child.

June 15, 2012

Bringing your dog to work lends to the impression of being less stressed!

Richard Barker, a researcher at the Virginia Commonwealth University, in partnership with his American colleagues, recently discovered that taking your dog to work decreased the owner’s perception of stress during the day.

May 15, 2012

Eating... a comfort to stressed women?

A group of American researchers recently studied the relationship between food and stress to determine whether comfort food was more comforting to highly stressed women.

April 2, 2012

Stress reactivity and self-regulation in adolescents

Researchers from Yale University School of Medicine, were interested in understanding the impact of stress reactivity on interpersonal abilities and emotional self-regulation, according to the presence or not of maltreatment during childhood.

March 19, 2012

Stress and Pregnancy

University of Calgary researcher and colleagues recently discovered that stress hormones fluctuate with mood during pregnancy, and has an effect on fetal development.

February 14, 2012

Friendship, a protective factor against stress?

A Concordia University researcher, in partnership with American colleagues, recently discovered that having friends is a protective factor for young adults, when faced with a negative event.

January 5, 2012

I’m stressed, you’re stressed…so, are we in love or not?

Californian researchers examined, in a couple’s relationship, whether the stress of a partner might affect the stress of the other partner.

November 22, 2011

Hair stress hormones six months ago are elevated in depressed patients

People suffering from depression generally have increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. For decades, cortisol levels have been measured in blood, urine, and saliva, giving scientists information about levels at the time of collection. Now we can measure cortisol in segments of hair, which gives us a retrospective calendar of cortisol levels months ago.

October 14, 2011

Memory of abused children …reliable source?

Abused children are sometimes asked to testify about their experience in different environments, such as in court. However, one question remains: can we rely on these testimonies?

September 20, 2011

Piano playing reduces stress

A group of researchers from Japan were interested in investigating whether art activities, including music, may have an effect on stress hormone (cortisol) levels and anxiety.

August 23, 2011

Living and growing in cities affects the brain’s response to stress

German and Canadian scientists studied the differences in the brain’s response to stress between individuals living in cities, towns or rural areas.

July 25, 2011

Greater healthy anxiety linked to more frequent health information search on the Internet

Research led by the University of Amsterdam show that health anxiety is linked with searching for health information online and actively posting health-related information online. The first study was an online survey.

June 16, 2011

And if our stress could be read in our faces…

American researchers asked themselves whether there was a link between the emotions displayed in our faces and the level of stress experienced during a stressful situation.

May 16, 2011

Consuming dark chocolate lowers levels of stress hormones

The purpose of this study was to investigate the metabolic effects of the consumption of dark chocolate.

April 29, 2011

Young survivors of Hurrican Katrina experience altered expressions of psychological and biological stress

Research led by the University of New Mexico suggests that natural disasters like Hurrican Katrina change stress physiology and behavior two months after the disaster

March 22, 2011

Exercise is associated with improved cognition and reduced stress hormones

Researchers from the University of Washington were assessed whether exercise related to memory performance and stress hormones (cortisol).

February 25, 2011

Stress strengthens the memory of recent first impressions for the positive personality traits of strangers.

A group of German and Dutch scientists conducted a study on how stress can affect people’s memory of strangers’ personality traits after a first impression.

January 13, 2011

High levels of stress are associated to teeth-grinding

A study, led by a German team, aimed to determine whether there is an association between stress-factors and sleep bruxism, or teeth grinding.

November 19, 2010

Playing violent video games does not have an impact on cortisol

Swedish researchers asked themselves if your stress levels could be influenced by virtue of playing violent video game.

November 19, 2010

Testosterone levels in hockey players watching a victory video

The goal of this study was to investigate if cortisol levels in high performance hockey players varied when they were watching videos of their team in previous games.

November 19, 2010

Cortisol, a detector of male sex-appeal?

American researchers investigated on young women cortisol levels linked to the view of seductive men.

November 19, 2010

The announcement of Barack Obama’s victory was stressful for McCain’s supporters

This study investigated whether cortisol levels of the electors differed at the moment of the announcement of the winner at the presidential elections according to which elector won or lost the election.

November 19, 2010

Gardening can help you recover following a stressor

The goal of this study was to investigate whether gardening activities could have an impact on physiological and emotional recovery after a stressful situation.

November 19, 2010

Breastfeeding and stress: link with milk quantity?

Researchers from Chicago asked themselves if a mother’s perceived stress could be associated with the quantity of milk produced.

November 19, 2010

Are stress hormones affected by jet lag?

Researchers from the University of Chicago studied how stress hormone levels and eastward versus westward time zone travel changes in over 750 American middle-aged men.

November 19, 2010

Teenagers' memory benefits from exercising

The goal of this study was to investigate the effects of a short physical exercice on cortisol and testosterone levels as well as on working memory capacities in adolescents of 15 and 16 years of age.

November 19, 2010

Does chewing gum reduces stress?

Australian and English researchers asked themselves if chewing gum could reduce stress.

November 19, 2010

Cortisol: Seduction tool?

Spanish and Dutch researchers have teamed up to study the physiological effects of a women’s presence on 84 men about 20 years of age.