Pocket Worthy · Stories to fuel your mind. The Science of Stress and How Our Emotions Affect Our Susceptibility to Burnout and Disease I had lived thirty good years before enduring my first food poisoning — odds quite fortunate in the grand scheme of things, but miserably unfortunate in the immediate experience of it. From Brain Pickings by Maria Popova This post originally appeared on Brain Pickings and was published July 20, 2015. This article is republished here with permission. What Pocket Users are Saying Sabine Staggl July 6, 2017 How stress affects our body. Noa Madhloum December 7, 2016 Our perception of stress, and therefore our response to it, is an ever-changing thing that depends a great deal on the circumstances and settings in which we find ourselves. It depends on previous experience and knowledge, as well as on the actual event that has occurred. And it depends on memory, too. The most acute manifestation of how memory modulates stress is post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. For striking evidence of how memory encodes past experience into triggers, which then catalyze present experience, Sternberg points to research by psychologist Rachel Yehuda, who found both Holocaust survivors and their first-degree relatives — that is, children and siblings — exhibited a similar hormonal stress response. This, Sternberg points out, could be a combination of nature and nurture — the survivors, as young parents for whom the trauma was still fresh, may well have subconsciously taught their children a common style of stress-responsiveness; but it’s also possible that these automatic hormonal stress responses permanently changed the parents’ biology and were transmitted via DNA to their children. Once again, memory encodes stress into our very bodies. Rebecca Colvin February 23, 2016 Great read. Discover more great stories — get Pocket .