How Our Different Personality Types Affect Our Health

Every single human is unique and our personalities are what truly defines us as individuals. As we grow and evolve, so does our personality. It influences us in everything we do, every day of our life.

Even though we possess this uniqueness, we love labeling and categorizing everything and everyone.  The same has been done with our personalities. Basic characteristics and traits have been bundled together. Several basic overall personalities were reviewed by studies set up by the University of Nottingham, led by Kavita Vedhara and the University of California lead by Sarah Hampson.

A significant connection was found between the different types of personalities and the way they shape the immune system. The participants were studied, each pertaining to the category of personality they fitted and which variety of health issues they endured.

It turns out that certain personalities are more likely to develop certain weaknesses in their immune system and have the tendency to develop certain health risks and diseases; whereas others personalities tend to show more immunity for the same risks.

A distinction is made between the worrier, extrovert, agreeable and conscientious personalities.

With the results of these studies, people can anticipate what to expect when they recognize themselves in certain traits.  This gives the opportunity to adjust habits and behavior to optimize one’s health. A personality is part of a person and is in many cases unchangeable. But habits can be altered and adjusted for a better mental and physical health.

The Worrier

A person will be sub-categorized as a worrier when they indicate that worrying is a trait that dominantly shows itself throughout the day. Surprisingly the worrier group is not as much at risk as one would think. But there is a catch.

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Within the group of the worrier, we can clearly differentiate between two kinds: the excessive worrier and the healthy worrier. The last one is the most common one and it keeps us alert to possible dangers.

But excessive worrying goes along with elevated stress levels which can result in unhealthy habits like overeating and drinking. Also was found that excessive worriers tended to have a bigger chance on depressions due to over worrying.

When you have determined to belong to the category of excessive worrying make sure to keep your calmness. This is easier said than done, but activities like yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises will help. Try to find out what can help you concentrate on the positive things in life instead of letting the worrying drag you down.

Extroverts

One will be sub-categorized as an extrovert if they show traits of outgoing behavior. They find a liking to interact with other people.A person which is primarily concerned with the physical and social environment.

“Our results indicated that ‘extraversion’ was significantly associated with an increased expression of pro-inflammatory genes.

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In other words, individuals who we would expect to be exposed to more infections as a result of their socially orientated nature (i.e., extraverts) appear to have immune systems that we would expect can deal effectively with infection.” Dr. Kativa

Extroverts tend to have up to a 17% stronger immune system than the rest of the personality types. Though there are elevated risks for high blood pressure and for developing cancer.

By ensuring you get enough rest, keeping to a healthy diet (lower the sugar intake) and boosting the intake of antioxidants, you lower the risks and have a better chance at living a healthy life.

The Agreeable

When you recognize yourself as an agreeable person, you will have difficulty with saying ‘no’. Also, you will do everything in your power to please everyone around you to avoid any kind of conflict. Setting boundaries is not your strongest forte and this comes with a cost.Screen Shot 2016-08-19 at 11.14.03 PM

The health risks that go along with being agreeable are increased stress levels (consenting to things outside of one’s comfort zone), overweight and diabetes.

By learning to set your own boundaries and learning to say ‘no’, you will increase your chances of a healthy life.

There is nothing wrong with trying to keep the peace but do not go so far that you will have to pay the price in the end.

Also, plan some time for yourself to relax. Just like the worrier, start doing activities like yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises to lower your stress levels. Epsom salt baths help as well, especially to let your body relax.

The conscientious

When falling under the category of a conscientious personality, you are driven by conscious. Dedication and hard work are highly dominant traits. Also being extremely devoted to your goals.

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 9.50.05 AMWhen a person is inventive and creative they tend to look at different situations in a positive light. An optimistic approach is being associated with a healthy lifestyle. But people with a conscientious personality have the tendency to overdo things.

They lose themselves  in their work, putting work before their health. As a result, they tend to neglect themselves.

The associated risks with this type of neglect are increased stress levels, digestion problems, and chronic diseases.

It is highly recommended to make your health a priority by paying attention to the food you consume (try consuming more fish, nuts, and vegetables) and be aware of the amount of exercise you do (at least half an hour per day).  To reduce the amount of stress try to meditate daily and make sure you rest enough by differentiating between productive time and time off.