Stress is very bad for our health. It’s something we all need to cut out of our lives. Yet despite the many terrible things stress does to the body and mind, we can’t seem to give it up. But a new study is seriously making us rethink our apathetic relationship with stress: it can shrink your brain.

A study published last month in the journal, Neurology, assessed the association of cortisol levels with cognitive performance and brain volume. Cortisol is one of the body’s main stress hormones, and while we need it in the right amounts, too much of it can wreak havoc in the body.

To understand how cortisol effects cognitive performance, researchers tested memory, attention and visual perception. They found that the higher the cortisol levels were, the worse individuals performed on cognitive tests. Their memory was also more impaired than the participants with lower cortisol levels, too.

Individuals were also given an MRI to observe brain structural integrity, i.e., brain volume. What was striking is that women with high cortisol levels had lower brain volume, but this wasn’t the case in men.  

Ladies, listen up: chronically elevated cortisol levels could shrink your brain. 

So, if you usually feel stressed out, now’s the time to address it. Not only does it wreak havoc on your hormonal health, but it can compromise your brain size, too. Whenever possible, take steps to reduce stress, do things you love, and cut out time to rest and relax. 

It’s just not worth ignoring your stress anymore.

Vitamin B is absolutely essential for your health and wellbeing. But unfortunately, an alarming study reveals that 40 percent of Americans may have a Vitamin B deficiency. Up until recently, the commonly held belief was that vegans and vegetarians were at the greatest risk for this deficiency. However, it looks like this can happen to a wide variety of people. So, here is why we need Vitamin B, and how you can include more of it into your diet.

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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 62 percent of reproductive age American women use contraception and 10.6 million women are on the Pill. It’s used to regulate periods and treat acne, as well as a host of other reproductive issues. However, research is showing that the Pill actually disrupts the gut microbiome. This sets women up for a wide range of health problems. So, if you’re on the Pill, you should understand how it’s affecting your gut microbiome.

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