We are surrounded by things, people and situations that can make us feel stressed and anxious in our everyday life. When we are stressed and tired our body tries to restore our energy by increasing cortisol levels.
Cortisol is a hormone responsible for that “hunger and craving feeling” that we experience. Also, instead of looking for nutritious foods we tend to crave for salty and sweet foods because they reduce the tension in our body.
So before grabbing that extra bag of potato chips, here are some techniques to fight weight gain from stress:
Rest before meals.
When we are fatigued, stressed and anxious, our respiratory rate is increased and it triggers our system to release cortisol, and we tend to eat more. So if you want to fight weight gain from stress and anxiety, make sure that you are well rested before eating your meal.
Make it a habit to sit and relax for a few minutes and practice deep breathing techniques before each meal.
Consume your food slowly.
When we are stressed we tend to eat as fast as possible and as a result, we eat more than what we’re supposed to eat. Try slowing down, savoring every bite, and taking the time to feel if you are already full with each bite.
This habit will help you fight weight gain from stress because it lowers cortisol levels, decreasing your cravings for food.
It is very tempting to lie down after a sumptuous meal but break that habit by having a 5-15 minute brisk walk after meals. Walking facilitates good blood circulation and aids in metabolism. Walking also relieves stress and helps you clear your mind, freeing you from stress even for a short period of time.
Push-ups to push the cravings away.
When you crave sweets after a stressful day, make it a habit of pausing, relaxing, and hit the gym (or your favorite exercise spot in the house) instead of going to the kitchen. Your body is telling you that you need to eat to relieve stress, so fight weight gain from stress by teaching your body that physical activity and not eating is your way of relieving stress.
Exercise also facilitates the removal of cortisol through sweating and urination.
Take enough rest and sleep.
Being under constant stress and anxiety drains the energy from your body. You need to take care of your body making sure that rest and sleep are balanced with everyday physical activity. Not having enough rest and lack of sleep also triggers the hunger hormones, your body is telling you to eat because it is trying to compensate for its tiredness. So fight stress by having enough rest and sleep after a tiring day.
The real key in winning against weight loss due to stress is self discipline and self determination. Adhere to healthy lifestyle and habit no matter how stressful your day maybe and wake up every day feeling great and refreshed and full of enthusiasm.