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Management article
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Reference no. 74402
Authors: Herbert Benson
Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Published in: "Harvard Business Review", 1974

Abstract

Regular use of the relaxation response counteracts the harmful effects of stress. Stress creates high blood pressure, or hypertension, through the documented "fight-or-flight" response of the hypothalamus. The relaxation response is an innate, integrated set of physiologic changes opposite to the fight-or-flight response. There are many techniques that elicit the relaxation response. Various investigations indicate that regular use of one of these can also reduce alcohol intake, drug abuse, and cigarette smoking. The business community has the opportunity to help itself and its employees by introducing these stress-reducing techniques into the workplace.

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Abstract

Regular use of the relaxation response counteracts the harmful effects of stress. Stress creates high blood pressure, or hypertension, through the documented "fight-or-flight" response of the hypothalamus. The relaxation response is an innate, integrated set of physiologic changes opposite to the fight-or-flight response. There are many techniques that elicit the relaxation response. Various investigations indicate that regular use of one of these can also reduce alcohol intake, drug abuse, and cigarette smoking. The business community has the opportunity to help itself and its employees by introducing these stress-reducing techniques into the workplace.

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