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Is Stress Killing You?

In 1967, psychiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe analyzed the medical records of more than 5,000 medical patients in order to prove whether stressful events might indeed cause illness. Patients checked off events from a list of forty-three life events called Life Change Units (LCUs) and their answers were scored.


The results were published as the Social Readjustment Rating Scale (SRRS), known more commonly as the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale. I’ve adapted the scale a bit to reflect more relevant life changes.


To assess how stressed you might be, and if you are at risk for illness, take the following assessment. Circle the events that have occurred in your life over the last twelve to eighteen months and add up the life change units (LCUs) that correspond with each one.


1. Death of spouse ➞ 100

2. Divorce ➞ 73 3. Marital separation ➞ 65

4. Jail term ➞ 63

5. Death of a close family member ➞ 63

6. Personal injury or illness ➞ 53 7. Marriage ➞ 50 8. Fired from job ➞ 47

9. Physical, emotional, sexual abuse ➞ 45 10. Retirement ➞ 45 11. Change in health of a family member ➞ 44

12. Pregnancy ➞ 40

13. Sex difficulties ➞ 39

14. Gaining a new family member ➞ 39

15. Business readjustment ➞ 39

16. Change in financial state ➞ 38

17. Death of a close friend ➞ 37

18. Change of career ➞ 36

19. Reduction in energy level, more fatigue ➞ 35

20. Mortgage/loan for major purchase (home, etc.) ➞ 31

21. Foreclosure of mortgage or loan ➞ 30

22. Change in responsibilities at work ➞ 29

23. Rarely laugh ➞ 29

24. Trouble with in-laws ➞ 29

25. Outstanding personal achievement ➞ 28

26. Spouse begins or stops work ➞ 6

27. Twenty or more pounds overweight ➞ 26

28. Change in living conditions ➞ 25

29. Alcohol/recreational drug use ve to seven times weekly ➞ 24

30. Smoking ➞ 23

31.Change in work hours or conditions ➞ 20

32. Change in residence ➞ 20

33. Change in schools ➞ 20

34. Change in recreation ➞ 19

35. Change in church activities ➞ 19

36. Change in social activities ➞ 19

37. Mortgage/loan for lesser purchase (car, etc.) ➞ 17

38. Change in sleeping habits ➞ 16

39. Sedentary lifestyle ➞ 15 40. Change in eating habits to more junk food ➞ 15 41. Feeling depressed or anxious a lot ➞ 13 42. Have few friends ➞ 12 43. Minor violations of the law ➞ 11


Results:

0–150 LCUs: Your level of stress is low, and your risk of disease is low.

150–300 LCUs: Borderline stress level. You should a empt to minimize changes in your life at this time. Your risk of illness could be as high as 50 percent.

More than 300 LCUs: Your stress levels are high. Your risk of disease could be as high as 80 percent. You should minimize changes in your life and institute some stress intervention techniques.



The above is an excerpt from my book, The Rejuvenation Solution. The book provides of blueprint of slowing down and even reversing the aging process. Order your copy here:



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Copyright 2019 - Enlightened Living Medicine / Robert Willix, Jr. MD

Enlightened Living Medicine

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