Stress is of course an inevitable part of life, and in small doses it can be beneficial. But in recent years a growing body of research has shown that persistently high levels of social and emotional stress — the kind brought on by a high-pressure job, a divorce, financial worries or strained relationships, for example — can dampen the immune system and promote inflammationheart disease and premature aging.

In his latest book, “The Stress Solution,” Dr. Chatterjee explores the many ways that persistent stress can lead to disease, along with strategies to protect against its toxic effects.