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The body's anti-stress system

The body possesses a powerful anti-stress system, also called the relaxation reaction. The system not only counters stress, but also increases tolerance during strain. Like the stress system, it involves complex processes in the hormone and nervous system. It is an active counter to stress.
In an anti-stress state, you rest, and your body is recharged and healed. This anti-stress system is activated by various types of calming stimuli, e.g. closeness/intimacy, touching and social support. In this state, peace and calm reigns, and energy is used for constructive processes, in contrast to combustion in the stress state.

Behaviour is typically characterised by openness and positive interactions. Various positive experiences can trigger this positive reaction in the body. This applies, for example, to positive sensory impressions - touch, taste, smell, sight and hearing. During physical contact in a close relationship, the brain interprets the surrounding world as good and supportive.
A good example of the operation of the anti-stress system is the nursing mother. Put briefly, during every breast feed she becomes more calm and socially interactive. During the breast feed, the anti-stress system develops, and in some women these changes become more or less constant and permanent.
Unfortunately, as a consequence of our lifestyle, the amount of intimacy in the family can be reduced. This can be counteracted, for example, by using 10 minutes' contact massage every day, during a rest period. This can influence a child's behaviour. For example, an unsettled boy can become less aggressive and better socially adapted.

Two major changes have taken place in our society. Stress has increased, and stimulation of the calming anti-stress system has reduced. The latter is due, for example, to individual activities such as watching TV and using PC's, and the workload at home and at work.
Stress management is not just about reducing the level of stress, but also actively stimulating the body's anti-stress system.

Physical eros factors

Physical stressors can trigger the stress state.
Within StressAndEros, physical factors that stimulate the body's anti-stress system are called physical eros factors.

Examples of physical eros factors are:
  • positive sensory impressions:
    touch: loving touch, massage
    taste: delicious food
    smell: nice smells
    sight: aesthetic experiences
    hearing: harmonic music
  • light and fresh air
  • healthy diet
  • quietness and relaxation
  • rest and sleep

The body's anti-stress system