How Toxic Relationships Can Wear Down Your Body & Ruin Your Health

You may think you’re coping well with a toxic partner, parent, sibling, or adult child. Your body will complain in many ways. Tune in to recognize those many ways your body says “Too much!”

You may think that you’re experiencing the natural wear and tear on your health. But, if you’re in a toxic relationship, it is making things so much worse! Learn about the most likely ways your body and its immune system can respond to toxic relationships with narcissistic people, or antisocial people. Talk about wear and tear!!!


  • What is the “rodent brain” and how it affects us
  • What happens in your body when it is on alert too long due to the stress of a toxic relationship
  • What causes “fuzzy brain”
  • How stress affects the body from production of different hormones
  • How trauma–old or current–affects the body, emotional trauma, physical trauma, sexual trauma, abandonment
  • How the immune system distinguishes what is toxic and what is safe
  • How this all relates to relationships with difficult people, toxic people, narcissists, psychopaths, sociopaths, borderlines

Two things that cause physical health issues (among many) start with emotional abuse: stress and isolation. Both of those are present in most relationships with Hijackals, right? Constant stress and the pressure to not talk about difficulties with others outside the relationship. Very common. In this episode, I share some research findings from Dr. Gabor Mate that relate to this where he said,

“The very same brain centers that interpret and feel physical pain also become activates during experiences of emotional rejection.”

Sound familiar? This can be terribly enhanced if, perchance, you had a narcissistic mother–a Hijackal mother–and then went on to be in a relationship with another Hijackal. It takes such a toll on you!

Dr. Hughes has a wonderfully refreshing approach to medicine as she tempers Western medicine with Eastern thought and practices. Enjoy her insights!

I hope you find connections within yourself to what in your relationships might be causing health issues. Often, until you realize that, you can have physical symptoms that seemingly cannot be explained. This episode might help with that.

Be good to yourself.



Dr. Hughes is a dermatologist and former faculty member at Stanford University, where she taught dozens of physicians, including many nationally-recognized leaders in the field of dermatology.

Nearly twenty years after graduating from medical school, Dr. Hughes witnessed the rapid resolution of a patient’s chronic illness without any medical intervention. This event caused Dr. Hughes to question everything she had been taught about health and illness, and to look for better answers for “incurable” conditions.

Her quest lead her to investigate ancient spiritual traditionsnon-western systems of health and healingplacebo research, and the emerging sciences of epigenetics and psychoneuroimmunology. In the process, she became a registered yoga teacher, a certified health coach, and a practitioner of several energy medicine modalities.

Dr. Hughes has developed a revolutionary approach to health based on establishing trust in the human body. Dr. Hughes believes that once each person has cultivated a deep and abiding trust in the power of the human body, our experience of health and illness will change for the better forever.


The Stress Antidote Guide:



LinkedIn: @ElizabethHughesMD



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