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      Stress and Health: A Review of Psychobiological Processes

      1 , 2 , 3
      Annual Review of Psychology
      Annual Reviews

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          Abstract

          The cumulative science linking stress to negative health outcomes is vast. Stress can affect health directly, through autonomic and neuroendocrine responses, but also indirectly, through changes in health behaviors. In this review, we present a brief overview of ( a) why we should be interested in stress in the context of health; ( b) the stress response and allostatic load; ( c) some of the key biological mechanisms through which stress impacts health, such as by influencing hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis regulation and cortisol dynamics, the autonomic nervous system, and gene expression; and ( d) evidence of the clinical relevance of stress, exemplified through the risk of infectious diseases. The studies reviewed in this article confirm that stress has an impact on multiple biological systems. Future work ought to consider further the importance of early-life adversity and continue to explore how different biological systems interact in the context of stress and health processes.

          Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Psychology, Volume 72 is January 4, 2021. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Annual Review of Psychology
          Annu. Rev. Psychol.
          Annual Reviews
          0066-4308
          1545-2085
          January 04 2021
          September 04 2020
          January 04 2021
          : 72
          : 1
          Affiliations
          [1 ]School of Psychology, University of Leeds, Leeds LS2 9JT, United Kingdom;
          [2 ]Department of Psychological Science, School of Social Ecology, University of California, Irvine, California 92697, USA;
          [3 ]Division of Primary Care, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham, Nottingham NG7 2UH, United Kingdom;
          Article
          10.1146/annurev-psych-062520-122331
          32886587
          0d7b1a49-d4eb-4d99-b706-3400594a4cc0
          © 2021
          History

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