Caught an interesting article (ignorant registration required) on the Dallas Morning News this morning on stress vs. autoimmune disorders. I was pretty skeptical at first because in the intro it suggested that stress may be good for your autoimmune disease. From experience I know that stress have a very negative impact on my Multiple Sclerosis and resulted in – or heavily contributed to – one of my major exacerbations and almost certainly slowed the healing. As I read on though it divided stress into two categories: acute and chronic. Both result in the resease of Cortisol which should help the immune system straighten out but what they suspect is that during chronic stress (like I had during these exacerbations) the body becomes resistent to the Cortisol and thus loses one of its major allies. On the other hand acute stress (like from watching a scary movie, riding a roller coaster, narowly avoiding and accident, etc.) can actually be good for an autoimmune disorder because it suddenly releases Cortisol into the system. Surprisingly there was actually a study done on this in 1991 and more are ongoing. Certainly not a cure but anything to help is welcome. On the other hand I will continue to try and avoid as much stress as I can – and definitely continue to avoid scary movies!