Why human get ulcers, but zebras don’t

I finished reading book Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers, Third Edition last week, a quite interesting read. Author Robert Sapolsky, a Stanford University neuroscientist, did an excellent job shedding light on human stress.
Being highly intelligent and social, humans suffer from more stress-related diseases than any other animal, worrying about family, health, jobs and even the future. These are all diseases that are either caused by or being worsened by stress. The average beast, on the other hand, does not spend much time worrying about these things, that is in essence, why human get ulcers, but zebras don’t.
Humans can anticipate that something unfavorable is about to happen to them and can have a stress response prior to the event, which could help them cope. On the other hand, if human believes they are about to be loosing control over, but they are really not and this belief continues, then they are dealing with chronic stress.
Author's own words sum up this situation very well - “ for 99% of the beasts on this planet, stress is about 3 minutes of screaming in terror after which it’s either over with or you’re over with, and we turn it on for 30 year mortgages”.

1 comment:

j o d i e said...

I thought it had been solidly proven that ulcers are caused by a bacteria, and not stress. ?