In a new study, researchers found daily stress could harm blood vessel functions in people with depression.
They found small everyday stressors such as arguments with a friend or family member may be enough to harm the blood vessels in these people and increase their heart disease risk.
The research was led by a team of researchers led by Penn State.
Previous research has shown that chronic exposure to stress is linked to the development of heart disease. Depression is also linked with heart disease.
However, how stress and depression affect the body and can contribute to heart disease are not clear.
In the study, the team tested 43 healthy people who did not have heart disease, did not use tobacco and were recreationally active.
They also evaluated the participants for symptoms of depression and endothelial function.
The participants reported any stressors they had experienced in the previous 24 hours, including
The researchers found that in adults with depression, those who had experienced stress in the previous day had a worse endothelial function.
This is a process that helps regulate blood flow.
In addition, these people experienced more stress and rated it as being more severe.
The researchers suggest that people with depression may have a worse vascular function in general.
The team suggests the finding helps explain the links between stress, depression and heart disease. It may help develop future intervention and prevention strategies.
In the future, the team hopes to continue researching a more comprehensive test of stress and additional measures of vascular function.
The lead author of the study is Jody Greaney, now an assistant professor at the University of Texas at Arlington, who led this study as a postdoctoral research fellow at Penn State.
The study is published in Journal of the American Heart Association.
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