Health Threat for Overachievers

Here's one more reason not to sweat the small stuff: Your perfectionisttendencies may be putting you at a higher risk for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Researchers at the New Zealand University of Auckland discoveredthat people with gastroenteritis (an inflammation of the lining of the intestinestriggered by a bacterial infection) were 1.6 times more likely to develop IBSif they were also highly driven or overly anxious. "One possible explanationis that as the nervous system is preparing you for fight or flight, it sendsout signals to shut down the digestive process," says the lead study author,Rona Moss-Morris, Ph.D. Symptoms may include cramping,constipation, or diarrhea. If you find yourself overextended and stressed, doyourself-and your stomach-a favor and lighten your load.

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