Friday, August 7, 2009

Thin New Yorkers and Modern Day Stress

In a recent New York Times article, Where Thin People Roam, And Sometimes Even Eat, by Anne Barnard, according to a recent study, Manhattan has far thinner people than the rest of the country. It is also the thinnest county in New York State. Some people think one of the reasons people are so thin in Manhattan is they have to walk a lot and climb subway stairs. According to the article, "the borough's richest areas have the lowest obesity rates and, some argue, an obsession with thinness. It seems the "wealthy Manhattanites are afraid of not being able to fit into their expensive clothes," so they work out at gyms regularly and walk a lot. They also want to look good. "Everything is in excess in Manhattan, whether it's how beautiful you are, how thin you are or how hard you work." 
A few blogs ago, I wrote an entry about the benefits of cutting calories and losing weight and how important it is for good health and longevity. Exercise, which helps you lose weight, also reduces stress, which is a big problem in modern society. 
I just read an AOL article that stated more women than ever before are driving while drunk. One comment was that the stress of trying to be superwomen is causing women to drink more. One psychologist stated that she has seen "more excessive drinking, overeating, smoking and drug abuse during the recession." Working mothers who "have an extra burden to be the perfect mothers and perfect wives and perfect daughters and perfect everything." Because of that they have a bigger burden than most men do, according to Carol Goldman, a psychologist.
In my humble opinion, what works for me is I exercise and I pray a lot (prayer is essential to my daily routine and it gives me so many benefits I wouldn't know how to live without it!) I also like to read (and write obviously) and I recently found out that reading is relaxing and a stress reducer (but I already knew that). 
If you have a friend or relative who is stressed, try to help them in some way, even small acts of caring and support mean so much when you're overwhelmed. And pray for them as well.