1st Edition

Stress, Health, and Behavior

By Richard McCarty Copyright 2023

    Exposure to stressful life experiences can disrupt key regulatory systems in the body and contribute to a variety of negative health outcomes. This authoritative text takes a biopsychosocial approach to understanding the role of stress in alcohol use disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and other chronic diseases. It presents cutting-edge knowledge about how stressors are conceptualized and measured; connections to disease processes; systemic racism as a significant, ongoing stressor for people of color; and factors that promote resilience. For each of the disorders discussed, proven and promising stress-targeted clinical interventions are reviewed. Student-friendly features include an end-of-book glossary and an extensive bibliography to facilitate in-depth study of selected topics of interest.

    1. Historical Aspects of the Stress Field
    2. Biological Measures of Stress
    3. Behavioral Measures of Stress
    4. Stress and Alcohol Use
    5. Posttraumatic Stress Disorder
    6. Stress and Depression
    7. Stress and Cardiovascular Disease
    8. Stress and Diabetes
    9. Stress and the Gastrointestinal System
    10. Stress and Cancer
    11. Stress and Infectious Diseases
    12. Systemic Racism as a Stressor
    13. Resilience
    Glossary of Terms


    Richard McCarty, PhD, is Research Professor of Psychology at Vanderbilt University, where he has taught undergraduate courses in stress and health since 2015. Dr. McCarty started his academic career at the University of Virginia and previously served as Dean of the College of Arts and Science and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Provost at Vanderbilt. He has published several books and more than 200 articles and book chapters. Dr. McCarty is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the Association for Psychological Science, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

    "McCarty provides a tour-de-force synthesis of the massive literature on the biopsychological bases of a range of debilitating and life-threatening diseases. His thorough telling embraces the history of major discoveries and leaves us with a clear picture of the status quo. This is the book clinicians need as they conceive of innovative and timely treatments, and it is an excellent primary text for a graduate course in Health Psychology or Psychosomatic Disorders."--Wolfgang Linden, PhD, Dipl-Psych, Department of Psychology, University of British Columbia, Canada

    "Stress is a ubiquitous element of modern life. This volume provides a comprehensive view of the history and current conceptualizations of stress, as well as connections to both physical disease and psychological and behavioral challenges. Chapters cover essential topics in stress research and interventions, with accessible language and informative tables and illustrations. This is a great resource in a complex area, and one that will likely become a standard reference and text."--Richard M. Ryan, PhD, Institute for Positive Psychology and Education, Australian Catholic University; Distinguished Professor, Ewha Womans University, South Korea

    "This book is a masterful achievement. It examines the intricate relationships that exist between stress, health, and behavior, beginning with one of the best historical reviews of the conceptualization of health and disease that I have seen, and following with comprehensive accounts of measurement approaches and specific disease processes. The chapter on the impact of racism as an acute and chronic stressor is particularly important. This book should be on the shelf of every clinical health psychologist and consultation-liaison psychiatrist. It is an outstanding text for advanced undergraduate courses in stress and health and health psychology, and for graduate courses in health psychology and behavioral medicine."--Alan L. Peterson, PhD, ABPP, Professor and Chief, Division of Behavioral Medicine, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio-This book is well written and adaptable to fit the needs of a wide audience. It is as suitable for an undergraduate course as it is for individuals seeking to improve their understanding of stress-related disorders….*****--Doody's Review Service, 9/8/2023