Dear Reader,

Credit card debt has become a major burden for so many American families.  As people rack up debt and the minimum payments go up, so do risks. And one of those can be to your physical health.

We often don’t think of credit cards as being “plastic happiness.” The ability to buy whatever you want whether you can afford to or not. They have contributed to the comsumerism in the United States, but they have also bankrupted people and forced others dangerously close to the financial edge.  Now, a new study shows that credit cards can damage your physical health.

Americans are taking on ever-increasing amounts of debt and it’s harming their health and relationships, according to researchers. The average American has three credit cards and a total balance of $6,506, up slightly from last year, according to Experian’s annual study on the state of credit and debt in America. Outstanding consumer debt now exceeds $4 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve.

Debt woes and that credit card balance are associated with psychological distress and poor overall health, according to a new report by personal finance site Credit card debt is the most stressful of all likely due to the high interest rates and the ease of use.  “The cost of debt shouldn’t be measured by interest rates alone,” said CarefulCents editor Brian Roberts. “There is a psychological cost to be paid, as well.” Researchers also said that the anxiety one feels will increase as the debt to income ratio increases, further burdening the mind and body.

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    When humans are stressed out, their cortisol levels rise and then felt in the physical body. You may think illness is to blame for that irritating headache, your frequent insomnia or your decreased productivity at work. But stress may actually be the cause of your health concerns. According to the Mayo Clinic, stress that’s left unchecked can contribute to many health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.

    To better manage stress that is impacting your health caused by your credit card debt, simply eliminate your dependence on the cards.  I know those airline miles are tempting, but no reward from any credit card company is worth damaging your physical health for. If you have found yourself stressing to the point of anxiety and sleep is difficult, you could be experiencing an overload of unnecessary burden of having the credit cards.

    While this solution is easy, it isn’t fun. But remember, if you endanger your body and health, those extra rewards will be null and void anyway.  The human body can only take so much and it’s important to recognize the problems that persist and take care of them when we can.  Don’t let something silly like some airline miles steal your most important asset: your health.

    Best Regards,

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