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How Low-Grade Stress Forces Us To Gain Weight

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Eat, Drink, Be Merry — and Lose Weight! What on earth happened with the notion that food is one of the finest pleasures in life? In the old times, the act of eating was something that was firmly associated with the gathering of family and friends, sharing both the food and their lives, relaxing and enjoying each other’s company.

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Oh, how things have changed! Stressed out people everywhere are gulping down their junk food with soda, barely lifting their heads as their eyes are glued to one screen or another. There is so much to do, so much content to consume, so many emails to answer!

Eating on the go, in order to continue with the daily grind as uninterrupted as humanly possible, is however not the solution — it’s a problem. It won’t save you that much time. It won’t make you stress less. And, it’s making you fat!

It is widely known that stress slows down your metabolism, as your body produces stress hormone cortisol that does its best to make everything you eat “stick”. Cortisol not only raises your blood sugar levels, which contributes to gaining weight (especially belly fat) but also interferes with other hormones that regulate body weight (such as insulin and leptin).

Don’t blame your body, it’s trying to keep you alive — after all, you are under stress day in and day out! You can’t even find the time to sit down and enjoy your meal!

You can see where I am going with this. No diet, no new exercise regimen is going to help you lose fat if you are constantly under low-grade stress. Studies have found that those women who took up yoga and meditation had better and more stable weight loss results than women who relied solely on diet and physical exercise. Experts speculate that the surprising results may be attributed to reduced cravings for sweet and fatty food that the more relaxed women experience! The women who have learned to relax gained better mental control and a better understanding of their hunger signals, so they were less likely to overeat or use food to self-soothe.

They were also generally happier and healthier!

It is obvious that when you have stress under control, it is easier to eat healthily and stick with an exercising regime. If you’re stressed about your weight, you may be actually making yourself fatter! So, stop stressing, and start stress busting instead! In the battle of the bulge, it’s high time we declare war on stress!

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