Surprising Source of Stress and Anxiety

author avatar Dr. Eric Berg 03/27/2024

Ever feel like the world's weight is on your shoulders? It could be. But not in the way you think. We're discussing a different load—The Hidden Stressor: Excessive News Consumption.

Yes, that endless stream of updates buzzing from your phone.

It’s everywhere. On our screens, in our ears, and creeping into our conversations at dinner tables. You wake up to it, perhaps even fall asleep as voices dissect the latest catastrophe or political drama.

A recent study whispered something startling: too much news can spike stress and anxiety levels. Imagine swapping those hours for something more serene and perhaps noticing how blue the sky is or how trees dance to the wind's tune.

Now let me ask: When did you last watch clouds drift by without wondering what crisis was unfolding in some corner of the world?

The Hidden Stressor: Excessive News Consumption

Today, news zips around us all the time, ready to be grabbed and read with just a flick of our fingers. It's on our phones, our TVs, and our social media feeds.

Sure, keeping up with what's happening in the world is crucial, but let's be real—being bombarded by news nonstop can really wear you down mentally.

Digging too deeply into the news daily can make us feel more stressed, anxious, and sometimes even down in the dumps. We're always on high alert, waiting for the next big story to break.

Understanding the Impact on Mental Health

When we're constantly bombarded with negative news, it triggers our body's stress response. Our heart rate increases, our muscles tense, and our mind starts racing.

As time marches on, this unrelenting stress can begin piling up, dragging down both your body and mind with a whole bunch of health issues.

According to a survey by the American Psychological Association, 56% of Americans say that following the news causes them stress. And it's not just the content of the news that's stressful - it's the sheer volume of it.

The Role of Adrenal Glands in Stress

When stressed, our adrenal glands kick into high gear, pumping hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. These hormones are designed to help us deal with short-term stressors, like running away from a predator.

But when we're constantly exposed to fear-inducing news, our adrenal glands can get overstimulated. This can lead to adrenal fatigue, a condition where our bodies struggle to cope with stress.

Sensationalism in News Media

It's no secret that some news stations use sensationalism to capture our attention. They use dramatic headlines, intense music, and even distortions of the truth to keep us glued to our screens.

But this sensationalism comes at a cost. When we're constantly exposed to fear-mongering and exaggeration, it can warp our perception of reality. We start to believe that the world is scary and dangerous, even if that's not entirely true.

The Experiment: A Week Without News

So, what can we do to combat the adverse effects of excessive news consumption? Dr. Eric Berg, a renowned health educator, suggests taking a break from the news for a week.

The idea is simple: take a step back instead of constantly checking your phone or turning on the TV. Focus on other things that bring you joy and peace, like spending time with loved ones or enjoying nature.

Choosing Peace Over Panic

When we constantly consume news, getting caught up in a cycle of panic and fear is easy. But we can break that cycle by spending time in calming environments, like parks or gardens.

Nature has a way of grounding us, reminding us there's more to life than the latest headlines. It's a chance to breathe, relax, and gain much-needed perspective.

Unplug & Unwind: Reclaim Calm Amidst Cilantro Benefits

Offers a holistic approach to reducing stress and anxiety while exploring the numerous health benefits of cilantro.

This week-long journey emphasizes mindfulness practices, digital detoxing, and incorporating cilantro into your diet to promote relaxation and overall well-being.

Cilantro, known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, can aid digestion, detoxify the body, and even promote better sleep, making it a valuable addition to your stress-relief toolkit.

Observing Changes in Well-being

After a week without news, many people report feeling calmer, more centered, and less anxious. They find they have more time for the things that truly matter, like hobbies, relationships, and self-care.

Of course, this doesn't mean we should ignore the news altogether. It's still important to stay informed about what's happening worldwide. But we can protect our mental health and well-being by being mindful of our news consumption and taking breaks when needed.


So, we've danced around the truth like leaves in a gentle breeze - that constant news consumption is more of a heavyweight champion in stress and anxiety than we ever gave it credit for.

This little adventure was so much more than just hitting the mute button on notifications or steering clear of the news cycle; it cracked open a whole new world where choosing calm over chaos brought an unexpected sense of peace.

The week without news? It's not just some whimsical idea but a concrete step towards reclaiming your calm.

The adrenal glands got their well-deserved break, proving that sometimes silence is golden. And those sensational headlines? They can wait because your mental health sure won't.

In our quest for serenity amidst the chaos, this journey unveiled something crucial: cutting the news cord doesn’t mean ignorance; choosing where to invest your energy wisely.

As trees continue to dance and skies remain unapologetically blue, remember - life’s too short to spend it perpetually on edge.

We embarked on this exploration together and found solace in simplicity—a lesson as clear as day yet profound enough to shift perspectives. So here's my final nudge: permit yourself to breathe easier by stepping back from the noise.

Because if there's anything our little experiment has taught us, finding peace isn’t just possible—it’s essential.

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