It’s no surprise that stress can cause weight gain.
During difficult times or challenging situations, many people turn to eating and drinking to cope with their emotions.
If this is something you’ve experienced before, know that you’re not alone, and it’s a perfectly natural response.
When faced with mounting pressure, our body goes into fight or flight mode and releases a hormone called cortisol – “the stress hormone.”
Too much of the stress hormone can have several adverse effects on our bodies including . . .
- weight gain
- high blood pressure
- changes in mood
- flushed face
- thinning skin
- difficulty concentrating
- insulin resistance
One of the most common of these effects is overeating. A spike in cortisol can cause higher insulin levels which drop your blood sugar, leaving you craving sugary and fatty foods.
If you have been gaining weight because of stress in your life, here are three things you can do to stop it:
When we are stressed or feeling anxious, sometimes the last thing we want to do is workout.
Moving your body for just 30-minutes a day has been shown to increase overall well-being by releasing endorphins (feel-good chemicals) and distracting you from your stressors.
However, sometimes going to the gym and figuring out what to do can be stressful in itself. For best results, find a coach who will hold you accountable and guide you through a workout that allows you to sweat and clear your mind without any added obstacles.
GET MORE SLEEP
Not getting enough sleep and compound the issue of elevated cortisol levels in your body.
There is nothing worse than staring at the ceiling or scrolling endlessly through your phone to distract your mind from the stress before falling asleep.
Working out will help clear your head and prepare your body for a better night of rest.
You can also practice good sleep hygiene by eliminating screentime in bed, blocking excess light, and trying to find a consistent time to fall asleep each night.
Taking a few moments each day to clear your mind when you’re overwhelmed can help reduce stress and increase your self-awareness, allowing you to take control of the situation.
You can use an app like HeadSpace to assist with guided mediations, or you can keep it as simple as closing your eyes and focusing on your breathing for a few minutes.
Taking the time to quiet your mind will help you recenter and focus your energy on solutions rather than problems.
STRESS CAN CAUSE WEIGHT GAIN, BUT IT DOESN’T HAVE TO
We all have stress in our lives. Some more than others and how we choose to deal with that stress can have an enormous impact both positively and negatively on our overall health.
If you have been feeling the stress and need help finding a routine to get you back on track, we can help!