Stress and Weight Gain

Most of the people admit that when they're under tremendous stress they find it very difficult to maintain healthy eating habits. However, weight gain under stress may also be at least partly due to the body’s system of hormonal check and balances, which could actually promote weight gain, when you are stressed out. There are many ways in which stress can contribute to weight gain. The stress hormone which is behind weight gain is cortisol.  Apart from many other reasons chronic stresses can also cause weight gain.

Chronic stress and cortisol are the main factors that can contribute to weight gain in the following ways:

MetabolismIf you feel like that you're prone to putting on more weight when you're stressed out, even if you're eating the same amount of food as you take usually. This is because that too much cortisol can slow your metabolism, which causes more weight gain than you would normally experience. This will make dieting impossible.  Cortisol also has other effects like increasing blood sugar, suppressing the immune system, and aiding in fat protein and carbohydrate metabolism.

CravingsIf people are more stressed they might prefer pint of Ben and Jerry instead of a nice salad. It is obvious one might not want to have a salty and sugary foods instead of healthy salad. People experiencing chronic stress tends to crave for more fatty, salty and sugary foods. This would include sweets, processed food and other things that aren’t good healthy for you. The nature of the foods is typically less healthy and they may lead to increase the weight gain.

Blood Sugar -- Prolonged stress can alter your blood sugar levels, causing mood swings, fatigue, and conditions like hyperglycemia. Too much stress has even been linked to the metabolic syndrome, which is a cluster of health concerns that can lead to greater health problems, like heart attacks and diabetes. Hence blood sugar is a factor in increasing the weight gain.

Fat Storage -- Excessive stress even affects where we tend to store fat. Higher levels of stress are linked to greater levels of the lower abdominal fat. Unfortunately, abdominal fat is not only aesthetically undesirable as it’s linked with the greater health risk than fat stored in the other areas of the body.

Other causes for weight gain due to stress

Stress and weight gain is caused by the following:

i.               Emotional eating – random eating without regard for nutrition or time.

ii.              Fast foods for unhealthy foods

iii.            No exercise or too busy to exercise

iv.            Taking antidepressants also can cause

Remedy for weight gain due to stress

Following relaxation techniques regularly is by far the best way to reduce stress and control increased cortisol levels that cause weight gain.  Meditation for at least 10 minutes daily can reduce stress levels that push your weight up. Exercise helps to avoid storage of fat in the body, preventing weight gain.

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